All Posts tagged chronic disease

HIV Shared Care for GPs

HIV Shared Care for GPs

The Australasian Society for HIV Medicine (ASHM) have developed a suite of resources to support GPs who provide care to HIV positive patients in their practice. Key to the HIV Shared Care for GPs model is the knowledge that improved treatment outcomes means that HIV is now considered a chronic condition. GPs, specialists, nurses, allied health and support services are involved in the management of people living with HIV and this management involves team-based interdisciplinary communication and planning.


Central to HIV Shared Care for GPs is the GP Management Plan (GPMP) for HIV - a tool that encourages comprehensive disease management using an annual cycle of care for HIV based on current guidelines including the RACGP Red Book and STIGMA Guidelines for STI testing.

HIV GPMP Audit and Shared Care Training

To evaluate the GPMP for HIV, an Audit and training package have been developed by ASHM with endorsement by the RACGP.

GPs with a caseload of five or more HIV positive patients have the opportunity to earn 40 RACGP QI&CPD Audit Points and 6 ASHM HIV Points when they participate in the Audit.

The Audit consists of three parts:

Part 1: A retrospective audit of five HIV positive patients for whom they have provided care in their practice. Each audit consists of 24 questions about the HIV management provided for that patient, and the level of communication between GP and HIV specialist or specialist service.

Part 2: Shared care training. The training consists of nine short videos from GPs, and specialist HIV services outlining how to develop a comprehensive GPMP for HIV and including the key issues in monitoring, management and best practice shared care between GPs and specialists.

Part 3: 6 months following the training component, the GP will be asked to complete a second retrospective audit of five HIV positive patients for whom they have provided care since the training.

The results will compare pre- and post- GPMP Shared Care training. GPs will receive a report that highlights their management of patients living with HIV, where their communication and monitoring needs improvement and encouraging GPs to reflect on their practice.

Participating in the Audit

The HIV GPMP Audit and Shared Care Training is available on the ASHM Learning Management System (LMS). Participants need to register for a username and password to access the LMS. Once registered GPs, and other health professionals, have access to an extensive library of online modules, training and webinars which accrue points towards their continuing professional development (CPD).

For more information, visit the ASHM Website
or contact ASHM via email hivsharedcare [at]



To Lead People, Walk Behind Them

To Lead People, Walk Behind Them

We are pleased to have as our guest blogger this week: GP, Edwin Kruys.

To Lead People, Walk Behind Them

Support for family medicine will reduce the cost and burden of disease. Just listen to what
some GPs have to say.

Queensland GP Dr Ewen McPhee tweeted the following message when he attended the
recent WONCA Global Family Doctor Conference in Prague:

“Chronic diseases is principal health burden, family GPs manage 95% of health problems
absorbing only 5% of the health budget ”

UK GP and Chair of the RCGP Dr Clare Gerada posted this on Twitter:

“Health systems based on strong primary care, which includes strong family medicine, are the
most efficient, equitable and cost-effective.”

All GPs know this, but they should be shouting it from the rooftops because politicians seem
to forget that investing in primary care will pay off in the long run.

Before introducing new health policies, governments should do two things:
1. Research the need for change (business case)
2. Research the support from health providers (stakeholder support)

This sounds simple, but too often changes are made because “they seemed like a good idea
at the time” and nobody bothered to consult the people on the work floor.

The PCEHR is a good example. There was never a business case for this project, and
nobody asked what clinicians needed to make their jobs easier.

This week, Pulse+IT magazine announced that NEHTA intends to start a ‘Clinical Steering Committee”
to make the eHealth records system more useful and usable for clinicians and consumers.
This of course should have happened years ago. It’s like building an expensive car, and when
you’re about to finish it, asking the driver what kind of vehicle he would have preferred. In this
case the driver wants a safer car. A few more control buttons to make things easier would’ve
been nice too.

But guess what? It’s too late now, because the car has been built already.

A recent online poll by Australian Doctor magazine found that 58% of GPs will never take part
in the PCEHR and will not be promoting its use to patients. It’s a shame because eHealth has
many potential advantages, especially for family medicine. The majority of doctors clearly
prefer to take the train, instead of using a brand new car that was never really designed for

It is going to be a challenge for the government to change this around.
Sadly, Minister of Health Tanya Plibersek simply declined to comment on the poll.
Instead she announced another multimillion-dollar cash injection in the PCEHR.

In supporting family medicine, Minister Plibersek would do well to follow the sage advice of Lao Tzu:

“To lead people, walk behind them.”

Dr Edwin Kruys is a GP who blogs at


Follow him on Twitter @EdwinKruys


Can Medicare Locals Help Close the Gap?

Can Medicare Locals Help Close the Gap?

Before we kick off, we’d like to acknowledge the apparent confusion between the terms Closing the Gap and Close the Gap. Far be it from me to elucidate here as, to be honest, I have been none too clear on the difference myself. That was until I came across respected Aboriginal Health GP, Tim Senior’s excellent explanation. We’ve provided his blog link below so you can refer to it later…. but first, let’s see where we’re at with Closing the Gap.