local informer Knit Wits Warm the Hearts Contents

Your monthly newsletter from Goldfields - Midwest Medicare Local
email: [email protected]
website: www.gmml.org.au
Knit Wits Warm the Hearts
For the past 12 years, a group
of ladies called the Knit Wits
have knitted, crocheted and
sewn thousands of items for
groups or individuals in need of
a little extra warmth and love.
This very generous group of
crafters have donated more
than 5,900 items including rugs,
scarves, socks and beanies this
past year alone for the needy of Geraldton and surrounding areas.
Pictured: Amanda Burley, GMML; Joy
Reinhardt, Knit Wits; Gaylene McComb,
GMML; Pat Tyrrell, Knit Wits
Recently Goldfields - Midwest Medicare Local (GMML) was thrilled
to have received a donation with a large quantity of items by the Knit
Wits, which are being distributed to our clients through the Partners In
Recovery (PIR) and Closing the Gap (CTG) programs.
Joy Reinhardt, coordinator of Knit Wits quit her job at the mines to focus
on this full time charity work. “It is something we do all day every day and
it is a good feeling to be able to help others,” she said.
The PIR program provides coordinated support and flexible funding for
people with severe and persistent mental illness with complex needs.
Some of these individuals may have become disconnected from social
or family support networks and are likely to experience difficulties
maintaining stable accommodation and completing basic daily activities.
July 2014
Knit Wits Warm the Hearts.............. 1
Ordering your Personalised
Diabetes Diary................................. 2
Nursing and Midwifery
Telehealth Consortia........................ 2
Type 2 Diabetes Free
Workshop in Geraldton.................... 2
Health Priorities Identified............... 3
Exmouth Expo 2014........................ 4
Better Start to Life........................... 4
Dietitian Dishes out
Plateful for Academy....................... 5
Detox Diets...................................... 5
Changes to the Aged Care
System............................................ 6
Epilepsy Action Australia................. 6
Local Informer Calendar.................. 7
GMML Kalgoorlie has moved.......... 8
Gaylene McComb, PIR Support Facilitator at GMML said, “Many of our
clients are extremely isolated, usually without friends or family. Most
never receive gifts of any kind, even at birthdays or Christmas, so the
donation of handmade garments from the ladies at the Knit Wits have
been gratefully received by our participants. This wonderful gesture of
kindness has made a lot of people feel acknowledged and special and it
is great to see the smiles on their faces when they receive the gifts.”
The Knit Wits receive grants from the City of Greater Geraldton, but will
always welcome donations such as wool, yarn, polar fleece and other
materials. If you would like to donate to the Knit Wits, contact Joy at
[email protected]
Goldfields - Midwest Medicare Local Head Office, Level 1, 209 Foreshore Drive, Geraldton WA 6530
Ph: 9960 6800 Fax: 9960 6899
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Ordering your Personalised Diabetes Diary
Due to the positive response received from
general practices and pharmacies within the
Midwest and Goldfields on the diabetes diaries,
Goldfields - Midwest Medicare Local (GMML)
have now made the template available online.
personalised copy. The new GMML website has step
by step instructions for placing your order online.
Simply visit www.gmml.org.au/programs/closing-the-gap
and follow the links.
In 2013, GMML printed and distributed over 10,000 of
these unique diaries to Aboriginal Medical Services,
GP practices and selected pharmacies throughout the
Goldfields and Midwest regions.
This one of a kind A5 diary was designed to make it
easier for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
to better understand and manage their diabetes.
GMML consulted with local dietitians and Diabetes WA
to ensure the content of the diary was the most up to
date information on diabetes management.
GMML have now made it possible for general
practices and pharmacies to order their own
Nursing and Midwifery
Telehealth Consortia
Type 2 Diabetes Free
Workshop in Geraldton
To support nurses and midwives in
the Commonwealth Government
Telehealth Initiative, a Telehealth
Online Learning Program is
available free of charge on the
Australian Nursing and Midwifery
Federation (ANMF) website.
The prevalence of type 2 diabetes is continuing to rise in
Australia. Refresh your knowledge of existing therapies
and expand your skills in newer medications available
in Australia by attending an active learning module
presented by The Royal Australian College of General
Practitioners (RACGP).
There are many resources in the online learning package that
can be printed and adapted for use in a variety of practice
settings, such as a range of downloadable check lists, templates
of running sheets, letters, emails and etiquette considerations. In
addition, trouble shooting tip sheets on coordinating Telehealth
services and practical solutions to technical issues are available.
An instructional video provides detailed information on conducting Telehealth online video consultations. Throughout the online
learning package, there are links to many useful and relevant
resources and websites.
Upon completion of the modules, there is an evaluation of the
course to enable further development of the program to meet the
needs of the participants.
To view the portal, log onto www.anmf.org.au and select the
About Us and Education Programs tabs.
The type 2 diabetes management in general practice, free one
day workshop, will focus on the following topics:
• Incretin based therapies (including injection
• SGLT2 inhibitors.
• Cardiovascular risk in type 2 diabetes.
• Individualisation of type 2 diabetes management.
Successful completion of this activity attracts 40 Category 1
RACGP & QI&CPD points.
The event will be held on Saturday, 2 August from 9:30am to
4:10pm at the African Reef Resort, Geraldton.
For more information and to register, visit
*NB: a three hour online session is also available prior to the
face to face workshop.
Health Priorities Identified
Goldfields - Midwest Medicare Local’s (GMML’s)
Primary Health Care Hubs and Forums have
been running successfully throughout the
Midwest and Goldfields regions for more than
12 months, and in that time have become more
widely recognised.
The hubs were designed to bring primary health
care providers and consumers together in one room
to discuss the services of the town, network, share
resources and identify what the health care priorities
The Midwest region has been divided into eight hubs;
• Batavia hub - Abrolhos, Eneabba, Leeman,
Northampton, Dongara, Geraldton and Mullewa.
• East hub - Mingenew, Morawa, Perenjori and
Three Springs.
• Golden hub - Mt Magnet, Yalgoo, Paynes Finds,
Cue and Sandstone.
• Shark Bay hub.
• Kalbarri hub.
The Goldfields region currently has a total of six hubs;
• Leonora, Laverton and Leinster hub.
• Ravensthorpe and Hopetoun hub.
• Wiluna hub.
• Healthy lifestyle education - 6 out of 8 hubs
identified both child and adolescent obesity as
requiring attention. The hubs recommended
that more healthy living education programs be
There were two main health priorities identified within
the Goldfields hub regions:
• Mental health - 5 out of 6 hubs identified mental
health as a high priority area. This varied from an
increase in service, to no service at all, as well as
a more coordinated approach.
• Podiatry - 3 out of 6 hubs requested podiatry
services high on their list of health needs.
Other needs identified at the Goldfields hub meetings
were diabetic services, health promotion, Aboriginal
health and ear health in school aged children.
With these priorities now identified for both regions,
GMML will inform other providers of the stakeholders
priorities and encourage services to work together to
improve the identified gaps and needs.
If you would like to know more about the identified
health priorities for your hub region, contact:
Midwest - Maddi Howie, 9960 6800 or
[email protected]
Goldfields - Gray Hardy, 9080 0400 or
[email protected]
• Esperance hub.
• Kalgoorlie, Coolgardie and Kambalda hub.
• Norseman hub.
Maddi Howie, GMML’s Midwest Community Liaison
Officer recently completed all eight hub meetings and
the Midwest forum. Gray Hardy, GMML’s Goldfields
Community Liaison Officer, together with Dion
Spurgeon, GMML’s Regional Coordinator, covered the
hub meetings and forums within the Goldfields.
Wondering what primary health services are available
in your community?
GMML have created a Primary Health Care Service
Directory for your convenience. You can access the
most up to date version of this on our website under
the ‘Community’ tab.
From these meetings, the following issues have been
identified as being top health priorities for the Midwest
• Mental health - 8 out of 8 hubs identified mental
health as being a priority. This varied between
current services visiting more frequently,
local mental health providers offering more
communication and a lack of primary prevention
• Drug and alcohol - 7 out of 8 hubs identified
drug and alcohol as a high priority. It has been
suggested that drugs are more readily available
within our communities, and recommended that
some education be brought in to highlight this.
Better Start to Life
The Australian Government’s ‘Better Start to
Life’ approach targets the health of Indigenous
mothers and babies so children are given the
best possible start to life.
Assistant Minister for Health Fiona Nash said, “Through
the $94 million investment in ‘Better Start to Life’ the
Government will expand efforts in child and maternal
health to support Indigenous children to be healthy and
go to school.”
Pictured: Shannon Mullikin, GMML
Exmouth Expo 2014
Goldfields - Midwest Medicare Local (GMML) was
pleased to have Shannon Mullikin, eHealth Officer;
Meredith Irving, Dietitian and Denise Mead, Social
Worker attend the 2014 Exmouth Health and
Wellness Expo on 19 June.
Organised by the Exmouth Shire and WA Country Health
Service (WACHS), the expo was host to many health
organisations and guest speakers, some travelling as far as
Narrogin and Bunbury to provide presentations on important
health topics.
Such topics included melanoma, men’s mental health,
spinal injuries and other drug and alcohol fuelled accidents,
alternative health treatments, sexual health, independent living
and much more.
Shannon Mullikin, GMML eHealth Officer said, “It was
wonderful to see such a large number and a diverse range
of health practitioners and agencies get involved to promote
health related goods and services available to the community
of Exmouth.”
GMML held an interactive stall with a food demonstration
orchestrated by Meredith Irving, GMML Dietitian, while
Shannon provided information on the Goldhealth Shared
Electronic Health Record and the Personally Controlled
Electronic Health Record.
The expo provided a fantastic platform for networking between
health professionals in the region. It proved to be the perfect
opportunity to meet with local health organisations to promote
the Goldhealth Shared Electronic Health Record, some of
which were keen to register in the near future.
GMML continues to deliver and fund mental health services,
hubs and forums, physiotherapy and other services to
“Well done to all at the Exmouth Shire and WACHS for
organising such a successful event. It was well worth the nine
hour drive!” Shannon said.
“The Government is committed to closing the gap by
ending the cycle of disadvantage which starts with poor
child health,” Minister Nash said.
“Focusing on the critical early years means Aboriginal
and Torres Strait Islander children will get a positive
foundation for life.”
As Minister Nash outlined in Senate question time
recently, The ‘Better Start to Life’ investment in the 2014 15 Budget will commence from July 2015. It will include:
• $54 million to increase the number of sites providing
‘New Directions: Mothers and Babies’ services from
85 to 137; and
• $40 million to expand the evidence based Australian
Nurse Family Partnership (ANFP) approach to
increase support for high need families.
The New Directions program will be expanded through
identifying and targeting funding to areas of need in order
to increase Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families’
access to:
• Antenatal care.
• Practical advice and assistance with breastfeeding,
nutrition and parenting; monitoring developmental
• Immunisation status and infections; and
• To undertake health checks for Indigenous children
before starting school.
The ANFP will also target areas of high need and
disadvantage and aims to improve prenatal health, child
health and development and parenting skills.
The ‘Better Start to Life’ approach demonstrates the
Australian Government’s commitment to overcoming
Indigenous disadvantage, particularly in the first five
years of life.
‘Better Start to Life’ is targeted at delivering long term
improvements in health, education and employment for
Indigenous Australians,” Minister Nash said.
Source - Assistant Minister for Health Media Release, 19 June 2014
Dietitian Dishes out Plateful for Academy
first myth Meredith debunked
as she started her interactive
presentation. “Many people think
that we are the food police, but it’s
usually the opposite. For me, it was
my combined love of health, food
and cooking that drew me to the
Pictured: Meredith Irving, GMML with local
high school students
34 students attending the
latest student health academy
session held at WA Centre for
Rural Health (WACRH) last
month, got a healthy serve
of nutritional information
thanks to Goldfields - Midwest
Medicare Local (GMML).
Meredith Irving, GMML Dietitian,
was one of seven local health
professionals who gave up their
time to share their experience
and knowledge with high school
students in their final years. Fourteen
members of the student cohort
belonged to Bunbury’s Manea
Senior College Health and Medical
Specialist program.
“Dietitians love all food” was the
Meredith said she thoroughly enjoyed
sharing her knowledge of nutritional
science and what this means in
the context of smaller Midwest
“Explaining to the kids that there is
so much more to the job than just
advocating for people to avoid eating
chocolate or carbs was entertaining,
but I really wanted them to
understand the multi-faceted career
choices and breadth of skills of allied
health professionals working in the
“We service areas such as Carnarvon
and Leeman, assess clinical
outpatients and work a lot with the
community, including schools and
aged care facilities.”
WACRH Clinical Education Manager,
Kathryn Fitzgerald said the centre
held its first student health academy
earlier this year. She said the
academy targets year 10 and 11 high
school students who are interested
in learning more about a career in
nursing, medicine or allied health.
“We are working on several angles the experience students gain through
the academy is unique, insightful,
but also very practical. They talk to
health professionals from a range of
disciplines and also get involved in
active skills sessions. In addition to
Meredith’s talk and skills sessions
on sugar in popular drinks, academy
participants learned to listen to
sounds on our simulation mannequin,
had a go at plastering, got a grasp on
manual handling using a hoist and
learned a bit more about life after a
The WA Centre for Rural Health
will be continuing its student health
academy program in term 3, with
enrolments opening within the
coming weeks.
Enquiries relating to this program
can be obtained by contacting
EdSIM Centre at WACRH
on 9956 0210 or by emailing
[email protected]
To discuss the services offered by the
GMML dietitians, contact 9960 6800
or at [email protected]
Article courtesy of WACRH
Detox Diets
Detox diets such as the juice diet claim to
cleanse or flush toxins from your body leading
to a more energised and healthier you.
Despite these claims, detox diets can often cause
more damage than good. Such diets typically involve
fasting and severe restriction of whole food groups,
(such as meat and dairy) which can put your body
under stress and make it difficult for you to meet
your nutritional needs. Furthermore, they can be very
expensive and only offer a short term solution for
weight loss.
Fortunately, we remove toxins from our bodies every
day. Our lungs, kidneys, liver, GI tract and immune
system remove and neutralise toxic substances within
hours after we eat them.
The Dietitian’s Association of Australia warns that
“there is no scientific evidence to suggest our bodies
need help to remove these toxins.” Rather than a
detox diet, the answer to feeling more energised and
healthy is:
• Reduce your consumption of alcohol, sugar
sweetened beverages and other foods high in
saturated fat, salt or added sugars.
• Replace these with plenty of fruits, vegetables and
wholegrain foods.
• Drink plenty of water.
• Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate intensity
physical activity most days.
• Make sure you get a good
nights sleep.
Courtesy of GMML
Changes to the Aged Care System
From 1 July, a range of important changes to
the aged care system came into effect.
The changes will give older Australians more choice,
more control and more of the services they might need
to stay in their own home for longer.
With around 3.5 million Australians needing some
form of aged care by 2050, fundamental changes
are needed now to ensure the aged care system is
sustainable and puts control back into the hands of
Changes have included:
• More support for older people to stay independent
and in their own home through more home care
packages to meet their needs.
• People will have greater choice and flexibility for
how they pay for accommodation and services,
whether it is a refundable accommodation deposit,
a daily accommodation payment, or a combination
of both, with 28 days to decide how they would
like to pay.
• Transparent accommodation prices and services,
with all residential aged care providers required
to publish the maximum amount they charge
for accommodation and extra services, giving
older people and their families more choice and
transparency in what providers charge.
• A new means test in residential care will help
determine a person’s fair contribution, if any,
to their care and accommodation, based on
both their assets and income. New means test
arrangements will also apply to home care.
also be in place for home care, set at $5,000 a
year for part pensioners and $10,000 a year for
self-funded retirees. A $60,000 lifetime cap on
means tested care fees across both home and
residential care will limit the total cost an individual
will spend on their care overall.
Most people don’t start thinking about, or looking for
aged care services until something happens, such
as a fall or adverse health event. But it’s important to
start an early conversation about what care options
are available to you or a loved one, because this will
help ensure older people get the support and care
they need to keep them safe and living independently,
or to find the residential aged care setting that’s right
for them.
The most important thing older people and their
families can do is learn about the choices available,
so they can plan and make the right decision.
Consumers will now have access to an unprecedented
level of information through the My Aged Care
gateway, where people can compare prices and
features in the one place.
They can also use an online fee estimator for an idea
of what they can expect to pay for their care.
People can contact the My Aged Care gateway on
1800 200 422 or visit www.myagedcare.gov.au
Source - Social Services Media Release, 30 June 2014
• New capping arrangements will help make the
system more affordable overall for individuals. A
$25,000 annual cap to means tested care fees in
residential care will be introduced and caps will
Epilepsy Action Australia
On 20 June 2012, The Hon. Terrence Keith Waldron MLA, Minister
for Sport and Recreations, Racing and Gaming; Deputy Leader
of the Parliamentary National Party of Australia (WA), announced
funding over three years to enable Epilepsy Action Australia (EAA) to
implement a Regional Outreach Service Program in WA to improve
epilepsy understanding and care in the Goldfields, Midwest, Greater
Southern and Kimberley regions of WA.
EAA conducted a community engagement program during 2013
and as a result, have developed a program to be rolled out over
the next two years and the third location to hold these events is in
These events will aim to improve understanding and awareness,
increase knowledge and skills of people supporting those with
epilepsy and enhance people’s capacity to self-manage their
For a complete list of community and professional activities within
Geraldton, visit the GMML website and search under Events.
Opportunities are also available to make an appointment with the
Epilepsy Nurse Educator by making a booking at 1300 374 537.
Epilepsy Action Australia
To celebrate International Men’s
Health Week, local health
organisations in Kalgoorlie-Boulder
are holding a men’s health team
challenge event. Free entry and
dinner provided to all participants.
Contact Rachel Nugent, Population
Health 9080 8200 to register.
An education session for
professionals to enhance their
knowledge of epilepsy and the
educational tools and services
offered by Epilepsy Action
23 July | Goldfields Institute of
Technology (Mining Hall of Fame)
Kalgoorlie | 6:00pm - 8:00pm
Health Professionals Breakfast
1 Aug | SJOG Training Room
Geraldton | 7:15am - 8:30am
Anaesthetists Monthly Meeting
Advanced Care Planning in Patients
with a Medical Illness
Presented by Dr Harry
Bretschneider with case study by
Dr Murray James-Wallace.
This course will help you to identify
patients with non-malignant chronic
organ dysfunction and managing
their symptoms, as well as planning
for EOL care plans. Presented by
Dr Paula Moffat, Geriatrician &
Palliative Care Physician and Dr
Derek Eng, Palliative Medicine
7 Aug | SJOG Training Room
Geraldton | 7:30am - 8:30am
25 July | Rodanthe Room,
Geraldton Hospital
Geraldton | 8:45am - 4:00pm
Presented by Pharmacist, Piyush
Health Professionals Breakfast
8 Aug | SJOG Training Room
Geraldton | 7:15am - 8:30am
National Bowel Cancer Screening
Program Course for Nurses
APNA in conjunction with Cancer
Council Australia have developed
this course to provide primary
health care nurses with an
understanding of the risk factors
and symptoms of bowel cancer,
different screening tests, features
of the National Bowel Cancer
Screening Program (NBCSP)
and duty of care associated
with the management of NBCSP
APNA is offering this course free to
APNA members and a special rate
of $59 for non-members.
To access the course visit the
APNA Online Learning website
or contact APNA at
[email protected]
Musculoskeletal Injury & Trauma
Vital Signs Respiratory
AstraZeneca presents an
interactive GP educational live TV
event with independent expert GP
and specialist panel discussions on
asthma and COPD.
29 July | Skeetas Restaurant
Geraldton | 5:00pm - 8:00pm
The RACGP WA faculty, in
collaboration with GMML is pleased
to present this workshop on the
assessment and management of
acute injuries and trauma.
15 Aug | Comfort Inn, Bay of Isles
Esperance | 8:30am - 5:00pm
Epilepsy Information Evening
A free information evening for
people with epilepsy and their
families to build knowledge of
epilepsy, self-management tools,
online resources and access to
the expertise of Epilepsy Nurse
31 July | City Hive
Geraldton | 6:00pm - 8:00pm
For further information on any of
these events, please contact your
local GMML office
Geraldton 9960 6800
Kalgoorlie 9080 0400
Esperance 0428 041 564
Please note that events are subject
to change at short notice
GMML (Kalgoorlie office)
has moved
On 16 July 2014, Goldfields - Midwest Medicare Local’s
Kalgoorlie office has relocated to:
Viskovich House
Suite 6
377 Hannan Street
Kalgoorlie WA 6430
Phone numbers and postal address remain the same.
Goldfields - Midwest Medicare Local
t: 9080 0400
f: 9021 6641
PO Box 4575, Kalgoorlie WA 6430