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Doctor Jobs in Australia: What Changes Are Coming?

August 26, 2019 0 Comments

Doctors in Australia work hard on a daily basis and often times have the interests of many in mind. We hear about the challenging times as well as the fun and rewarding lifestyles.

Between managing your appointments and ongoing education, a GP can have their hands full. And with the personal life on top of that it can be a challenge itself keeping up to date with new changes.

Below are a few developments that may impact doctors at work. From an increased involvement in recruitment processes to changes in public health and technologies – we hope you enjoy.

Changes Coming to Doctor Jobs 

Teen Mental Health and Social Media

Australia’s 5G Mobile Network

Opioids Marketing to Doctors

Smoking in Australia

South Australia Rural GP Shortage

Teen Mental Health and Social Media

For a lot of parents social media is a tricky subject. It has pros and cons, both as recommendations and with some interesting research findings included.

As the Australian parenting website Raising Children highlights, there are many benefits but also major risks.

Benefits may include: Digital literacy, Collaborative learning, Exploring creative skills and educational content, Connecting with communities and extended friends

Major risks though, may include: Exposure to inappropriate and upsetting content, Exposure to targeted marketing, Sharing of personal information with strangers, Direct bullying from digital communication

The recent findings are sending mixed signals. Nature Human Behaviour posted this year that there was only a small 0.4% negative impact on psychological well-being in the young people used in their dataset and the digital technology use.

And this recent Lancet report found that over the course of a 3-year observation of 10,000 young people aged 13-16, it was the teenage girls that had a higher risk of mental health issues than the boys in frequent social media use. Nearly 60% of the girls experienced distress in areas such as disrupted sleep patterns from late night social media use and exposure to bullying. For the boys? That impact was only 12%.

GPs can help to educate and help their young patients with guidance through the mental health issues that may arise. There is no need to ban or regulate their usage, but certainly there are areas that they also benefit from knowing about which will keep them safe.

Patient registration form with smiley pen

Australia’s 5G Mobile Network

In 2020, it is estimated most Australians should be able to access the new 5G mobile network. It is being hyped as a much faster network with a greater capacity for data transfers.

There have also been protests and questions about the public health issues associated with this new network. We will know more as time goes by, but what do we know already?

The World Health Organisation published a report last year that indicated no harmful evidence in human health from the exposure to low-level electromagnetic fields.

Here, the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency devote their website to highlighting the misinformation spread bout the 5G mobile network.

GPs need to be aware that this new network is coming soon. It may have side effects that need to be monitored over time.

Opioids Marketing to Doctors

Targin, a strong opioid we have recently mentioned, has now officially been announced as being the target of an investigation into how compliant its promotional material has been within the Medicines Australia Code of Conduct.

Multiple doctors in Australia have spoken out against the opioids usage and warn about the alarming negative impacts of them in the United States. Even the media and some journalists who have written books about opioid addictions have chimed in hoping to inspire and make a change. One example is where Switzerland was discussed, and how they managed to handle a bad opioid epidemic in a bit over a decade as a country with tremendous results to public health and safety. Peoples lives changed for the better.

There can be great benefits to medication but perhaps not always with opioids as examples have shown us.

Heart and doctor instrument

Smoking in Australia

GPs should be encouraged to help manage patients with tobacco consumption. But what facts do we have in Australia?

Firstly, there is a reported decline in smoking rates in Australia between 1990 up to 2018. National Health surveys similarly indicated various findings.

But, as one Professor recently found out, trying to get a health and medical question into 2021’s census related to smoking was not an easy task and it is unlikely the question will be included. New Zealand have done it in the past with interesting findings and data but Australia may not have this in the near future.

South Australia Rural GP Shortage

We know there has been a serious shortage of rural doctors in Australia. Some of our consultants have been involved with locum doctor jobs in Australia for years and have many stories to tell about what the doctors have endured.

South Australia have been heavily influenced by this shortage of doctors. This year Keith and District Hospital set up a crowdfunding page to help keep it open.

The South Australian government drafted a Rural Medical Workforce Plan this year with interesting findings towards Building a Skilled Workforce, New and Sustainable Models for Rural Health Care and Developing a Collaborative and Coordinated Health System. They also opened it up to feedback from the involved parties to identify key recruitment issues.

Their own medical facts and figures indicate SA Health provides rural health care to a population of around 505,000 covering 99,8% of South Australia. A lot of rural towns and communities can be reached from Adelaide and locum positions for GPs are available.

Heart and doctor instrument listening on it

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