DArcy Photography Leanne Beagley 070 cropped and resized2

Congratulations to Board member Susan Brumby

Congratulations to Board member Dr Susan Brumby and the team at the Centre for Farmers Health on recently being awarded the 2017 Western District Health Service – Award for excellence and innovation – non clinical for “The Ripple Effect Project”.

The Ripple Effect Project is a collaborative online platform where people, who have been touched by suicide in any way, can learn, share their experiences and access resources on issues around suicide and well-being.

Susan was the chief investigator on this community-based project, which included the involvement of 60 community champions and over 400 stakeholders.

Through this collaboration, it is hoped that the tide of suicide in rural communities, is turned back. The project aims to understand suicide in rural areas and look at new ways of addressing it.

The Ripple Effect Project has involved lead partner – The National Centre for Farmer Health and supporters Deakin University, the Victorian Farmers Federation, AgChatOZ, the Mental Illness Fellowship North Queensland, Sandpit and Western District Health Service as part of beyondblue's STRIDE Project with donations from the Movember Foundation.

For more information, please see The Ripple Effect website

Dr Leanne Beagley, Chief Executive Officer 

General

Experts come together in Ballarat for Perinatal Anxiety and Depression Conference
Expansion of Prescribed Drugs of Dependence program in 2018
Attend our PHN Learning Hub Launch: Monday 4 December
Conversations about codeine
Chief Health Officer Advisory: Increase in Human Parechovirus (HPeV) in Victoria
Chronic Lymphocytic Leukaemia (CLL) is contraindicated for the shingles vaccine, Zostavax®
Screening and identifying chronic disease in primary care training funding
Upcoming My Health Record webinars
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Domestic and Family Violence Response Training
Victorian Opioid Pharmacotherapy Program
Photography and dermatology: the capture and storage of clinical images webinar
The Implications of Codeine Rescheduling webinar
Codeine rescheduling and its impact on the treatment of opioid dependence 

Ballarat Goldfields 

HealthPathways update
RAMPS addiction specialist available for consultations
Conversations about codeine 

Geelong Otway  

HealthPathways update  

Wimmera Grampians 

RAMPS addiction specialist available for consultations
Conversations about codeine 

General 

Experts come together in Ballarat for Perinatal Anxiety and Depression Conference

3 keynote speaksers see program conference delegates

Left photo: Conference speakers - Professor Bryanne Barnett, Professor Jane Fischer and Professor Anne Buist.

Raphael Services Ballarat partnered with Western Victoria Primary Health Network (PHN) to host the first perinatal and infant mental health conference in Ballarat on Saturday 18 November.

The conference brought together a team of experts that presented contemporary views for clinical consideration and new treatments for improving outcomes.

Anxiety and depression during the perinatal period (before, during and after pregnancy) is more common than many people realise. As many as 1 in 5 expecting or new mums and up to 1 in 10 dads are affected by anxiety and depression, and it is thought that around 100,000 families across Australia are impacted every year.

Dr Harish Kalra, Clinical Director for Raphael Services Ballarat said this was the first time the region would host an event specifically for health professionals to discuss emotional wellbeing issues, trends and practices in relation to new or expecting parents.

“This is a significant step towards greater collaboration of PIMH agencies across the Grampians region. The conference brought together experts from across the field to share insights, practice and research to encourage change, better care and reduce community stigma linked to the illness,” he said.

Dr Leanne Beagley, CEO Western Victoria PHN said that continuity of care for a pregnant woman with a mental health condition is paramount, both for her and for the early development of connection and relationship with her baby.

“At Western Victoria PHN we see that multidisciplinary collaboration is very important; that a pregnant woman at risk receives the right care from her GP through to different health services and supports within her community.”

Professor Bryanne Barnett AM, Clinical Director for Raphael Services New South Wales and one of the conference keynote speakers, has published extensively in this field. She is a tireless advocate for early intervention, prevention and health promotion to reduce the effects of PIMH.

“Being pregnant or becoming a parent brings so many new challenges; psychological, social and physical.

“Providing the right support and treatment for parents experiencing anxiety and depression is crucial to a healthy parent-infant relationship and the family as a whole,” she said.

“This event provided a great opportunity for like-minded professionals to collaborate and integrate to support the emotional health and wellbeing of parents and families in our communities.”

With an impressive line-up of speakers the event attracted a number of GP’s, mental health nurses, maternal and child health nurses, obstetricians and allied health professionals.

Speakers included Professor Anne Buist, Professor of Women’s Mental Health at the University of Melbourne, Dr Jane Fisher, Jean Hailes Professor of Women’s Health, Monash University and Conjoint Professor (UNSW) Bryanne Barnett AM, Clinical Director for Raphael Services New South Wales.

Expansion of Prescribed Drugs of Dependence program in 2018

PDD photo Ballarat 2017

Western Victoria PHN Opioid Management Clinical Advisor, Pene Wood, presents at Prescribed Drugs of Dependence Active Learning Module.

Western Victoria PHN in partnership with Orticare Pharmacotherapy Network recently ran a Prescribed Drugs of Dependence Active Learning Module (ALM) in the Ballarat Goldfields region. The free 40 Cat 1 point RACGP&QI event was attended by GPs from Ballarat, Maryborough and Ararat and featured sessions on motivational interviewing, schedule 8 permit requirements, the role of allied health in managing chronic pain patients, preparing for codeine up-scheduling and clinical advice from GP educator Dr Paul Grinzi. The event aimed to assist GPs in identifying and managing patients with problematic use of prescribed drugs of dependence with a focus on improving the quality and safety of prescribing drugs of dependence in general practice.

The feedback from attendees was overwhelmingly positive with 100% of participants stating that the course was entirely relevant to their practice and 91% of participants stating that their learning needs were entirely met.

Some feedback from GPs upon completion of the Active Learning Module

“Absolutely outstanding course. It was exceptional and very professionally managed.”

“Very useful training program. Excellent speakers and materials. Very well organised.”

Expansion of program

In light of the success of the Prescribed Drugs of Dependence ALM in Ballarat Goldfields, Western Victoria PHN, Murray PHN and Orticare Pharmacotherapy Network have begun plans to extend the prescribed drugs of dependence program across the Grampians and Loddon Mallee region in 2018. Workshops are planned for Bendigo, Horsham and Mildura and will be reinforced with the provision of support and resources for general practices. Learnings from these sessions will also be used to develop similar programs across the Barwon South West region in 2018.

Why do we need this program?

The Coroner’s Court of Victoria revealed that 80% of Victorian overdose deaths between 2009 - 2015 involved pharmaceutical drugs, making them bigger killers than illicit drugs or road accidents. Opioids and benzodiazepines were the most commonly implicated medications. Due to the higher rates of prescribing and limited access to pain and addiction services, patients living in regional and rural areas were particularly vulnerable.

For further information please email or phone:

Katrina Martin - Primary Care Consultant - Prescribed Drugs of Dependence, Western Victoria PHN on 03 5304 5618
Jacqueline Keevins - Manager OrtiCare Pharmacotherapy Network, on 03 5338 0511
Pene Wood - Opioid Management Clinical Advisor, Western Victoria PHN, Barwon South West, on 03 5222 0800.

Attend our PHN Learning Hub Launch: Monday 4 December

PHNWesternVictoriaLogo halfsize.094639

You are invited to attend the launch of Western Victoria PHN’s NEW online learning management system ‘PHN Learning Hub’ on Monday 4 December at 9am at either of our offices in Geelong, Ballarat, Warrnambool and Horsham.

The PHN Learning Hub has been developed by Clinician’s Matrix and allows health professionals to learn, develop and update their knowledge and skills in an efficient and cost effective way. The PHN Learning Hub can be accessed from any location, extending the reach and accessibility of education for health professionals across the western Victoria region.

Health professionals can have access to a range of continuing professional development (CPD) learning options such as online courses, webinars, eLearning programs, and live online health related conferences as well as guidelines and decision support tools making the PHN Learning Hub the ‘central hub’ for educational resources. All features are optimised for mobile devices ensuring users can access the PHN Learning Hub at anytime from anywhere.

Come along to the launch to learn about the many features of the PHN Learning Hub and how to access it.

Please email your RSVP by Monday 27 November and advise of any dietary requirements and which office you will be attending the launch.

We look forward to seeing you at the launch.

Conversations about codeine

PHNWesternVictoriaLogo halfsize.094639  Orticare.160359

Pharmacists, prescribers and other health professionals are currently experiencing the impacts of the impending re-scheduling of codeine-containing products on 1 February 2018. It is anticipated that over the next few months, more people will require advice, assistance and alternative treatments for managing their pain conditions or for possible dependence.

In addition to the information and resources recently provided by Western Victoria PHN, a series of educational and clinical networking events are being held across the region to assist health professionals with managing the changes. These events are supported by Western Victoria PHN and the Orticare Network.

Ballarat
The Ballarat Clinical Network for Addiction Management invites interested health professionals to participate in a facilitated case discussion, focussing on local referral pathways and options.
Date, time, venue: Wednesday 29 November, 6.15pm – 8pm, Ballarat Community Health, Lucas. To find out more, please see this flyer. To RSVP please email orticare@bchc.org.au or call 03 5338 0511.

Ararat
Kindly hosted by Ararat Medical Centre, this session aimed at local prescribers, pharmacists and interested health professionals includes facilitated case discussion.
Date, time, venue: Thursday 7 December, 1pm - 2pm, Ararat Medical Centre. For more information and to RSVP please email orticare@bchc.org.au or call 03 5338 0511. 

Victoria State Government

Chief Health Officer Advisory: Increase in Human Parechovirus (HPeV) in Victoria

There has been an increase in detection in Human parechovirus (HPeV) in Victoria since July 2017.  HPeV is usually spread from person-to-person through contact with respiratory droplets, saliva or faeces from an infected person. 

Human parechovirus occurs commonly in the general population, and usually causes a mild respiratory and gastrointestinal illness in young children. Some strains can cause a severe sepsis-like and neurological illness in neonates and young infants.

Human parechoviruses are not currently detected using standard enterovirus tests used in most pathology services. Parechovirus PCR should specifically be requested in cases of severe illness, and if not available from local pathology providers, can be accessed through the Victorian Infectious Diseases Reference Laboratory (VIDRL).

No specific therapy is available; treatment is aimed at symptom relief and supportive care. Good hygiene practices are vital to protect against gastrointestinal illnesses, including HPeV infection. No vaccine is available to prevent HPeV infection.

Read more

Chronic Lymphocytic Leukaemia (CLL) is contraindicated for the shingles vaccine, Zostavax®

Other immunocompromising conditions and therapy that are contraindicated include:

Primary or acquired immunodeficiency

  • Haematologic neoplasms: leukaemias, lymphomas, myelodysplastic syndromes (including: those who remain under follow up for chronic lymphoproliferative disorders; and individuals who are currently not receiving treatment)
  • Post-transplant: solid organ (on immunosuppressive therapy), haematopoietic stem cell transplant (within 24 months, or longer if immunosuppression or graft versus host disease is present)
  • Immunocompromised due to primary or acquired (HIV/AIDS) immunodeficiency
  • Other significantly immunocompromising conditions

Immunosuppressive therapy (current or recent)

  • Chemotherapy or radiotherapy - within the last 6 months
  • Corticosteroids (short-term high dose, long-term lower dose) – see below
  • All biologics and most disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs).

Confidently identify patients who may be contra-indicated for shingles vaccine by using the Zostavax - GP decision aid.

Zostavax® contains live attenuated varicella-zoster virus, containing 14 times more virus than the childhood varicella vaccine. Inadvertent administration to immunocompromised people is associated with a risk of disseminated disease from the vaccine virus.

Remember to target the age eligible 70 to 79 year old age cohort for Zostavax®. Check vaccine records first to confirm that the patient has not already had a dose. All vaccine doses should be reported to the Australian Immunisation Register.

Screening and identifying chronic disease in primary care training funding

The Benchmarque Group logo

The Benchmarque Group have a limited number of Australian Government, fully funded places available for their online Screening and Identifying Chronic Disease in Primary Health course.

The program focuses on health assessment and screening activities to identify, support and manage patients with chronic disease, and examines how the health service can provide optimum care when obtaining a patient’s history, performing clinic audits, recruiting patients (target groups) and accurately utilising Medicare item numbers to support patients through care planning and team care arrangements.

To find out more, including registration details, please see the Benchmarque Group website.  Registrations close 5pm, Friday 29 December 2017.

Upcoming My Health Record webinars

Australian Digital Health Agency My Health Record 6 Oct 2017

The Australian Digital Health Agency has just announced a three part series of My Health Record webinars that includes an introduction to My Health Record, connection information, the benefits and your contribution to My Health Record.

Webinar 1: An Introduction to My Health Record
Date: Thursday 23 November 2017
Time: 5 - 6pm (AEDT)

Webinar 2: Getting Connected to My Health Record 
Date: Thursday 30 November 2017
Time: 5 - 6pm (AEDT)

Webinar 3: My Health Record - What's in it and how do I view and upload?
Date: Thursday 7 December 2017
Time: 5 - 6:00pm (AEDT) 

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Domestic and Family Violence Response Training

Lifeline logo

Lifeline is conducting a nationally recognised training program that enables frontline workers including health professionals supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities to confidently:

  • Recognise signs of domestic and family violence (DFV)
  • Respond with appropriate care
  • Refer people experiencing or at risk of domestic and family violence to appropriate support services.

Date: Thursday 30 November and Friday 1 December
Time: 8.45am - 5pm
Venue: Aunty Irene Harrison's Gathering Place, Goolum Goolum Aboriginal Cooperative, 43 Hamilton St, Horsham

For further information including registration details, please see this flyer.

Victorian Opioid Pharmacotherapy Program

Pharmaceutical Society of Australia

The aim of this training is to provide pharmacists and pharmacy support staff with the relevant knowledge, skills and tools required to deliver a safe and consumer focused Opioid Replacement Therapy service.

ORT Part 1 training covers the basics of harm minimisation and opioid replacement programs including all technical, professional and legal requirements.

ORT Part 2 training is a case scenario based workshop in which the concepts learned from Part 1 are reinforced through real life scenarios and group discussions led by the workshop facilitator.

Date: Sunday 3 December
Time: 10am - 3pm
Venue: 381 Royal Pde, Parkville
Cost: Free

To find out more, including registration details, please see this flyer.

Photography and dermatology: the capture and storage of clinical images webinar

ACRRMlogo.150841

The role of photography in dermatology and skin cancer management has become increasingly important with the advent of digital technology.

Images can be crucial to diagnosis and management and remain the bedrock of medical education.

This webinar will focus on how to optimise your photographic technique, why you should take and store images and the potential pitfalls you may encounter.

Date: Wednesday 6 December
Time: 7pm AEST

To find out more, including registration details, please see the Australian College of Rural & Remote Medicine website.

The Implications of Codeine Rescheduling webinar

RACGP.145657 small

The RACGP Victoria New Fellows and Drug and Alcohol Committees are offering members a webinar on the implications of codeine rescheduling. The aim of this session is to inform GPs about the upcoming changes in the rescheduling of this drug and the potential implications. It also aims to provide GPs with strategies on how to treat patients who may have developed an addiction to codeine.

Date: Wednesday 6 December
Time: 7pm - 9pm

To find out more, including registration details, please see the RACGP website.

Codeine rescheduling and its impact on the treatment of opioid dependence

Indivior logo

This educational event aims to provide participants with:

  • An update on issues related to the rescheduling of codeine that will come in effect on 1 February 2018
  • An opportunity to discuss how services can prepare for this event
  • An opportunity to examine appropriate treatment options for codeine dependence.

Dr David Jacka, Addiction Medicine Specialist at Monash Health and Dr Suzanne Nielsen, Senior Research Fellow at NDARC (UNSW) will be speaking.

Date: Thursday 7 December
Time: 6.30pm - 9pm
Venue: Fenix, 680 Victoria St, Richmond

To find out more, including registration details, please see the Eventbrite website.

Ballarat Goldfields

HealthPathwayslogo.115903

HealthPathways update

New on HealthPathways:

  • Cultural Awareness Training
  • CTG Scripts and Allied health Services
  • Health Assessment of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander People (MBS Item 715)
  • Integrated team Care (ITC)
  • Practice Incentives Program Indigenous Health Incentive (PIP-IHI)
  • Aboriginal Health Support Services
  • Early Childhood Early Intervention Service
  • Acute Ent Assessment
  • Non-Acute ENT Assessment
  • ENT Advice
  • Acute Haematology Assessment
  • Non-Acute Haematology Assessment
  • Haematology Advice.

To stay up to date on recent, locally agreed guidelines see HealthPathways.  

RAMPS addiction specialist available for consultations

PHNWesternVictoriaLogo halfsize.094639 Orticare.160359

GPs in the Grampians region are able to access a free fortnightly secondary consultation service with Dr Raymond Chan (FAChAM). Dr Chan’s RAMPS Service provides GPs, nurse practitioners and other clinical healthcare staff with access to expert and documented advice and consultation. He can provide expert secondary consultations for cases where there is:

  • Concern about a patient’s opioid dependence – including patients with chronic pain conditions
  • A patient that may be suitable for or is currently on opioid replacement therapy (pharmacotherapy)
  • Other/multiple concerns about a patient's alcohol or drug misuse
  • Expert advice required regarding a medical withdrawal.

RAMPS consultations are currently available via phone or email. For further information and details on how to book, please see our flyer.

Next available consultation sessions are on the mornings of:

  • Thursday 30 November
  • Thursday 14 December.

Half-hourly time slots are available.

You can also access RAMPS in the Geelong Otway and Great South Coast areas by emailing Amy Collins or calling 5564 5888.

Referrals can be made using standard clinic management software referral templates:

  1. Fax to 5564 5800 with RAMPS clearly stated in the referral or fax cover page
  2. OR send via ReferralNet Id: RAMPS.

For all RAMPS referrals ensure patient consent has been obtained and include:

  • All relevant patient information
  • Preferred time and date for consultations to occur
  • Preferred contact method: face to face, tele/videoconferencing.

All referrals are triaged by the Pharmacotherapy Clinical Nurse and will be processed within two business days.

All urgent opioid management clinical advice should be referred directly to the Drug and Alcohol Clinical Advisory Service (DACAS) 1800 812 804.

Conversations about codeine

PHNWesternVictoriaLogo halfsize.094639  Orticare.160359

Pharmacists, prescribers and other health professionals are currently experiencing the impacts of the impending re-scheduling of codeine-containing products on 1 February 2018. It is anticipated that over the next few months, more people will require advice, assistance and alternative treatments for managing their pain conditions or for possible dependence.

In addition to the information and resources recently provided by Western Victoria PHN, a series of educational and clinical networking events are being held across the region to assist health professionals with managing the changes. These events are supported by Western Victoria PHN and the Orticare Network.

The Ballarat Clinical Network for Addiction Management invites interested health professionals to participate in a facilitated case discussion, focussing on local referral pathways and options.

Date: Wednesday 29 November
Time: 6.15pm – 8pm
Venue: Ballarat Community Health, Lucas.

To find out more, please see this flyer. To RSVP please email orticare@bchc.org.au or call 03 5338 0511.

Geelong Otway

HealthPathways update

HealthPathwayslogo.115903

New on HealthPathways:

  • General Surgery Referrals – Acute, Non-acute and Advice
  • Infectious Disease Referrals – Acute, Non-acute and Advice
  • Cardiac Rehabilitation
  • Aboriginal Health Services
  • CTG Scripts and Allied Health Services
  • Cultural Awareness Training
  • Aboriginal Health Support Services
  • ENT Assessment – Acute, Non-Acute and Advice
  • Haematology Assessment – Acute, Non-Acute and Advice.

Recently reviewed and updated HealthPathways:

  • Adverse Events following Immunisation
  • Home and Community Support for Older Persons
  • Practice Incentives Program Indigenous Health Incentive (PIP-IHI)
  • Metatarsal Fractures
  • Developmental concerns in Children.

To stay up to date on recent, locally agreed guidelines visit HealthPathways.

Wimmera Grampians

RAMPS addiction specialist available for consultations

PHNWesternVictoriaLogo halfsize.094639 Orticare.160359

GPs in the Grampians region are able to access a free fortnightly secondary consultation service with Dr Raymond Chan (FAChAM). Dr Chan’s RAMPS Service provides GPs, nurse practitioners and other clinical healthcare staff with access to expert and documented advice and consultation. He can provide expert secondary consultations for cases where there is:

  • Concern about a patient’s opioid dependence – including patients with chronic pain conditions
  • A patient that may be suitable for or is currently on opioid replacement therapy (pharmacotherapy)
  • Other/multiple concerns about a patient's alcohol or drug misuse
  • Expert advice required regarding a medical withdrawal.

RAMPS consultations are currently available via phone or email. For further information and details on how to book, please see our flyer.

Next available consultation sessions are on the mornings of:

  • Thursday 30 November
  • Thursday 14 December.

Half-hourly time slots are available.

You can also access RAMPS in the Geelong Otway and Great South Coast areas by emailing Amy Collins or calling 5564 5888.

Referrals can be made using standard clinic management software referral templates:

  1. Fax to 5564 5800 with RAMPS clearly stated in the referral or fax cover page
  2. OR send via ReferralNet Id: RAMPS.

For all RAMPS referrals ensure patient consent has been obtained and include:

  • All relevant patient information
  • Preferred time and date for consultations to occur
  • Preferred contact method: face to face, tele/videoconferencing.

All referrals are triaged by the Pharmacotherapy Clinical Nurse and will be processed within two business days.

All urgent opioid management clinical advice should be referred directly to the Drug and Alcohol Clinical Advisory Service (DACAS) 1800 812 804.

Conversations about codeine

PHNWesternVictoriaLogo halfsize.094639  Orticare.160359

Pharmacists, prescribers and other health professionals are currently experiencing the impacts of the impending re-scheduling of codeine-containing products on 1 February 2018. It is anticipated that over the next few months, more people will require advice, assistance and alternative treatments for managing their pain conditions or for possible dependence.

In addition to the information and resources recently provided by Western Victoria PHN, a series of educational and clinical networking events are being held across the region to assist health professionals with managing the changes. These events are supported by Western Victoria PHN and the Orticare Network.

Kindly hosted by Ararat Medical Centre, this session aimed at local prescribers, pharmacists and interested health professionals includes facilitated case discussion.

Date: Thursday 7 December
Time: 1pm - 2pm
Venue: Ararat Medical Centre.

For more information and to RSVP please email orticare@bchc.org.au or call 03 5338 0511.