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Message from the Chair 
As many of our country South Australian general practices will be aware the Department of Health has introduced a new Practice Incentive Payment (PIP) arrangement effective from the 1st of August. The PIP Quality Improvement (PIP QI) incentive aims to recognise and support practices that commit to continually improving patient access, outcomes and overall best practice care.

Practices who have been involved with the Improvement Foundation's Collaboratives programs in the past will recognise and understand the benefits to patients in having the practice look at its data. It enables benchmarking against yourself over time and assists with putting in place strategies to improve data collection and patient focussed outcomes. This might be as simple as targeting pneumovax coverage, or chasing diabetics overdue for cholesterol measures, or doing a blitz of urine ACRs in those at high risk of chronic kidney disease. 

Practices able to demonstrate this commitment to continuous quality improvement will be eligible for the PIP QI incentive. Practices will be supported to utilise the knowledge they have about their own patients needs to develop relevant and innovative strategies and activities to drive quality patient outcomes. 
To understand the PIP QI requirements & PIP data governance arrangements, practices will need to familiarise themselves with the following documentation:
PIP QI Guidelines 
Improvement Measures 
PIP Eligible Data Set Data Governance Framework 
PIP QI Who do I ask
PIP QI Fact Sheet
These documents can be accessed on the Department of Heath website

There are two components a general practice needs to meet to qualify for a PIP QI Incentive payment:

Participate in Continuous Quality Improvement
The PIP QI Incentive rewards practices for participating in continuous quality improvement activities in partnership with their local PHN. Practices may focus their quality improvement activities on specified Improvement Measures. There are no set targets for the Improvement Measures. Alternatively, practices can choose to focus their activities on other areas. These areas must be informed by their clinical information system data and meet the needs of their practice population.

Provide the PIP Eligible Data Set to your local PHN
The PIP Eligible Data Set is the data collected against specified Improvement Measures. General practices must submit to their local PHN on a quarterly basis the PIP Eligible Data Set from their general practice clinical information system. PHNs will use the de-identified data to provide feedback to general practices. This will help the practices identify key priority areas and quality improvement activities. 

Practices are now able to register for the PIP QI Incentive via HPOS using their Provider Digital Access (PRODA) account

Our Practice Support Team is available to assist your practice with your PIP QI transition. If you would like to receive a PIP QI Practice Readiness Checklist or for all other queries please email

Now available on HealthPathways SA - Influenza, Influenza Immunisation and Pandemic Influenza

South Australia has witnessed a significant increase in the number of notifications of influenza in 2019. In order to support clinicians to respond to cases of influenza, HealthPathways SA have developed three key resources in conjunction with South Australian Subject Matter Experts, Dr David Gordon (Infectious Diseases physician) and Angela Newbound (Immunisation Hub Coordinator).

The Influenza pathway contains concise guidelines including which patients to consider for PCR testing, anti-viral treatment and prophylaxis.  Useful information on how general practice can prepare for, and respond to, Pandemic Influenza including how best to protect patients and staff has been developed.  The Influenza Immunisation pathway clearly outlines the details of the influenza vaccines available in 2019.
Access to HealthPathways SA is free and easy. Find out more or register for a login today: Register Here
Already have a log in? Check out the new, Influenza, Pandemic Influenza and Influenza Immunisation pathways today. 

715 Preventative Health Assessment Health Promotion

Through the Integrated Team Care Activity - A Closing the Gap Initiative, a 715 Health Promotion Project has been launched for the Country SA PHN region. 
The Indigenous Health Project Officers in your area are able to assist your practice in providing support and advice in the delivery of services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, including necessary fundamentals to help get you started in 715 Health Check promotion and further supports, advice and information with follow-up care.

In addition, through support from your Indigenous Health Project Officers, on completion of a 715 Health Check, patients will be able to get a free Health Assessment shirt or cap. 
To get involved please contact the Indigenous Health Project Officer in your area.
North - Jacinta 08 8643 5600 
West - Josephine 08 8683 0162
Yorke, Mid North, Gawler & Barossa - Amanda 08 8209 0700
South & East - Sally 08 8531 0289     

The Australian Department of Health have launched key resources to assist Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisations and general practice.  For more information or to download the resources click here.

Welcoming Environments

The Country SA PHN (CSAPHN) Welcoming Environments Grants have enabled the Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS) to work collaboratively with Marli Macumba to scope a series of paintings that are inclusive of all the Aboriginal people who access RFDS services (Yalata, Oak Valley, Oodnadatta and Marree). 
Marli is a Contemporary Aboriginal artist from Port Augusta - Iwantja (Indulkana), Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara Lands and is descendant from Pitjantjatjara, Yankunytjatjara, Arrente, Gurindji and Walpari peoples. RFDS engaged Marli to paint artwork to create a welcoming and safe environment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who access the clinic at the Port Augusta Base when they are visiting Port Augusta from the communities. Marli created 4 paintings, the paintings reflect Port Augusta and other remote and far north communities and people who travel in and out every day and night needing medical assistance from the Royal Flying doctors service. 
Marli has an emotional connection with RFDS as her uncle was evacuated to Adelaide and as a result one of her paintings was donated. RFDS also congratulate Marli as being awarded 'Artist of the Year' at the 2019 Port Augusta NAIDOC Awards Ceremony. RFDS is extremely appreciative of Marli's generosity and are confident that the artwork will encourage Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to access primary care services as part of RFDS' commitment to delivery of culturally appropriate services.

Meningococcal B Immunisation Program

The catch-up Meningococcal B Immunisation Program ends on 31 December 2019. 

Practice staff are encouraged to recall eligible children and adolescents who have yet to be vaccinated, and to use every encounter with parents of young children and adolescents to discuss the meningococcal B vaccination program.
Childhood catch up program
Children aged from 12 months to less than 4 years of age at the commencement of the program on 1 October 2018 have until 31 December 2019 to commence the catch-up program.
Those who receive their first dose before the end of the catch-up program will be eligible to receive funded vaccine to complete the course.
Adolescent/young adult catch up program
Students in Year 11 will receive funded doses in the School Immunisation Program in 2019 only. The Year 11 catch-up program will end 31 December 2019.
Individuals aged 17 to less than 21 years of age at the start of the adolescent catch up program on 1 February 2019 have until 31 December 2019 to commence the catch-up program.
Those who receive their first dose before the end of the catch-up program will be eligible to receive funded vaccine to complete the course.
Ongoing program
From January 2020, funded meningococcal B vaccine will only be available for the childhood program (at 6 weeks, 4 months and 12 months of age) and in the School Immunisation Program for Year 10 students only.
For more information or assistance please contact the Immunisation Hub on 08 8219 5900.

Chronic Disease Management & MBS Item Number Booklet updated 1st August 2019

A current and up to date Chronic Disease Management & MBS Item Number Booklet is available covering all commonly used CDM and MBS Item numbers in general practice.
For a copy of the booklet please email

Improving Access to Primary Health for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People – GP Resource

This Desktop Guide is intended as a resource manual to assist General Practice staff to effectively coordinate care for their Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients. Additionally, it provides comprehensive information regarding the registration and provision of services for the Indigenous Health Incentive.  For a copy of the booklet please email

Join the Big Red Kidney Walk - Sunday 8 September 2019

Kidney disease is a silent killer affecting 1.7 million Australian adults with most unaware that they are affected. 
The Big Red Kidney Walk is Kidney Health Australia’s largest community fundraising event of the year, with the goal to unite to support those affected by kidney disease.

Help us fight kidney disease, join a Walk near you 

Moorundie Ruwe Ninkawi’s Group

Moorundie Ruwe Ninkawi’s Group in The Riverland came about through discussions with mothers of young Aboriginal children and the need for a culturally safe space to meet, to yarn, to improve their social and emotional wellbeing whilst being able to bring their children and also interact with them through various activities. 

Through these yarns a common theme of self-esteem kept coming up. So Aboriginal Sobriety Group (ASG) in conjunction with Riverland Crossfit and Live Better Physiotherapy, a program was developed to both increase physical and mental health well-being for these group of women.

The mother’s self and esteem and confidence as parents and as predominantly Aboriginal mothers has increased and this can be seen through attendance at community events. As the group has evolved so has the sense of pride has developed within these women. Pride in themselves as individuals, as mothers and pride of the success of the group. 

For mothers of Aboriginal children to stand in a predominantly non-Aboriginal community and to stand proud as women and mothers has assisted in developing positive social and emotional well-being for this group. 

The Moorundie Ruwe Ninkawi’s Group have overcome issues of lateral violence and family issues and have put that aside for the sake of the group. There has been nothing but positive outcomes to date and these will continue to grow.

Each week the mothers and children participate in an activity together to build on their relationships with their children. Some activities have been clay, painting canvases & card making.

The group have extended offers of inclusion to other mothers that they see struggling within the Riverland Community. They share language and teach the children language too. They actively teach their children cultural protocol and traditions.

Understanding LGBTIQ 

Many of those who work within the health profession have the desire to practise inclusively, to use the right terminology and to be accepting of sexual and gender diversity – but don’t feel they have the knowledge, skills or confidence to do this.

This online course provides an overview of the key concepts for people working with LGBTIQ individuals.

Health professionals working in country SA can access this course at no cost thanks to support from Country SA PHN (eligibility criteria apply). Go to

Heart Foundation Community Hearts Project 
The Community Hearts team will engage with South Australians aged 45–75 years (or 30–75 years for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people) across various regional locations.
Participants will be asked to share specific demographic details and will have their blood pressure and cholesterol measured. 
As a result of the Community Hearts Project you may witness an increased number of patients attending your practice and requesting a Heart Health Check.

From 1 April 2019 two new interim items (699 and 177) are available on the Medicare Benefits Schedule to allow GPs and other medical practitioners to conduct a Heart Health Check.

To find out more about the Community Hearts Project and the locations that the Community Hearts team will be visiting please contact Dr Natasha Schranz, Research & Translation Manager — Heart Foundation on (08) 8224 2838 or

Women's health - Powerful stuff
The two biggest barriers for women not maintaining a healthy lifestyle is ‘lack of time’ and ‘health not being a priority’. Women’s Health Week is the time to do something for your health and start making positive changes that can last a lifetime.

Increased screening for syphilis and HIV in SA – New advice for clinicians

SHINE SA have released a 5 minute video resource for health professionals providing advice on the current syphilis outbreak in South Australia. Syphilis is a sexually transmitted infection. It presents a serious public health issue as it causes harm to the developing foetus and increases the transmission and acquisition of HIV. The video: ‘SA Syphilis Outbreak – Advice for Clinicians’ urges health professionals to be aware that syphilis is increasing rapidly in SA and that there is a need to respond with increased screening. Click here to learn more.

ReachForTheFacts on Prescription Opioids

More people die from accidental prescription drug overdose than are killed on Australian roads 
While prescription opioids can be very effective in managing severe pain, like many medications they can also cause negative side effects and have unintended consequences. In fact, 80% of people who take prescription opioids for more than three months will have a negative side effect.  South Australia has some of the highest dispensing rates of prescription opioids in the country and in accidental deaths due to pharmaceutical have almost doubled in our state.  

Supported by more than a dozen organisations with a pure South Australian focus, ReachForTheFacts is the community awareness campaign to address the concerns arising from prescription opioid use. The campaign will run over the next 12 months, and includes television and radio ads, billboards, print media and a website – explore ReachForTheFacts now and keep an eye out! 

Better Medical - GP Opportunities
Join an innovative and forward thinking group of clinics, which highly values quality care and clinical autonomy with a community focus.
We have GP opportunities for full or part-time positions. 
Modern, fully accredited clinics, DPA and non-DPA.  Well established mixed/private billing. Opportunities in clinics located in Mount Barker and Strathalbyn with excellent nursing and administrative support. 
For further information and a confidential discussion, please contact Amy Sissman on 08 8391 2055 or

Position Criteria:
FRACGP/ FACRRM or on a recognised pathway to Fellowship; Unconditional AHPRA registration; Australian permanent residency or on visa with working rights.
Better Medical - Position available for employed Locum VR GP 
An exciting opportunity for a VR GP to locum across our 19 (and growing) clinics Australia-wide. With clinics across the Adelaide Hills and city, Brisbane and Tasmania we are in need of a GP to support our practice doctors by filling vacancies across our clinics. 
Minimum hourly guarantees can be negotiated for the right candidate, as well as remuneration for covering costs of airfare and travel when needed. 
For further information and a confidential discussion, please contact Amy Sissman on 08 8391 2055 or

Position Criteria: FRACGP or FACRRM, Unconditional Specialist AHPRA registration, Australian permanent residency or on visa with working rights
GP VR ED for Rural Hospital 
Between August 2019 and February 2020 - Range of Shifts 8am-8pm; 6pm-8am; 8pm-8am 

The rural hospital is looking for a GP VR with extensive rural and Emergency Department experience to provide services to the community. The doctor needs to be experienced in working in ED departments. They are working by themselves not supervised. There are on call anaesthetists and also obstetrics if needed. The doctor needs to be credentialed to work in South Australia and also credentialed for Port Lincoln which the agency will normally organise. Travel and accommodation provided. 

To have a confidential conversation about this vacancy, please contact Carly or Sara of Australian Medical Placements on 08 8333 5666 or email 

Supporting communities during drought online resource, Emerging Minds: National Workforce Centre for Child Mental Health (NWCCMH) has developed drought-specific resources to support GPs, health and social service providers, educators, first responders and community leaders as they engage with children and their families. Fact sheets, videos, podcasts, e-learning courses and workshops on children’s mental health are available for free online at the Emerging Minds web hub.
Understanding barriers and facilitators to opioid deprescribing in primary care The University of Sydney seek registered GPs with authority to prescribe opioid analgesics and experience in prescribing or deprescribing opioid analgesics for their views on the barriers and facilitators to opioid deprescribing, in order to design interventions to tackle the overuse of opioid analgesics. More information phone 02 8627 6267 or email
Carer Gateway, from September 2019, carers will be able to access carer-specific supports and services through a new network of Carer Gateway service providers, which will work with carers to plan and access tailored and flexible services. For more information go to
Mental Health Assessment of MDD SurveyThe study will investigate how the different signs and symptoms of Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) are weighted by clinicians in the assessment process. It will take approximately 15 minutes to complete, click here to participate in the survey.
The Blood Service Mobile Blood Donor Centre will be in Nuriootpa on Monday 2 September to Friday 6 September, in Clare on Wednesday 11 September to Friday 13 September, in Berri on Monday 16 September to 17 September, in Renmark on Wednesday 18 September to Thursday 19 September, in Port August on Tuesday 17 September to Friday 20 September, in Bordertown on Monday 23 September to Tuesday 24 September, in Whyalla on Monday 23 September to Thursday 26 September and in Strathalbyn on Wednesday 25 September to Thursday 26 September 2019.
Provide your feedback on the future of aged care system navigation, Australian Healthcare Associates (AHA) has developed a discussion paper informed by stakeholder consultations and existing system navigator models. The paper outlines proposed design principles, components and considerations for implementation of aged care system navigator models in Australia. Have your say by completing the: feedback form on page 20 of the discussion paper or complete the online survey. Submissions will be accepted until 16 September 2019.
Supporting aged care workers with a Digital Dashboard, co-designed with people working in aged care, ELDAC is developing a palliative care dashboard that can be built into existing IT systems to present data in ways that can help monitoring, reporting or decision-making. Keen to learn more and get involved click here.
Dementia services useful contacts list, if you are an aged care provider or health professional, a family carer or friend of someone who is living with dementia and you need assistance with dementia specific services, please refer to the useful contacts list the department has developed which outlines the services available to support you.

For more professional development opportunities go to
North & West Region
Chronic Pain: Complexities and Contemporary Care - Port Augusta
Monday 30 September 2019, 6.30pm - 9.00pm
Managing Personality Disorders: an integrated approach - Port Augusta
Wednesday 9 October 2019, 6.30pm - 9.00pm
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health training for General Practice - Port Lincoln
Wednesday 18 September 2019, 6.00pm - 9.00pm
Aboriginal Cultural Awareness Workshop - Port Lincoln
Saturday 9 November 2019, 6.00pm - 9.30pm
Yorke & North Region
Cardiology Update: Contemporary heart failure management - Maitland
Wednesday 11 September 2019, 6.30pm - 9.00pm Register Here
Aboriginal Cultural Awareness Workshop - Port Pirie
Saturday 12 October 2019, 6.00pm - 9.30pm
Rashes in Kids Paediatric Dermatology - Maitland
Friday 27 September 2019
Rashes in Kids Paediatric Dermatology - Clare
Friday 8 November 2019
Central Region
Bowel Cancer Workshop - Hahndorf
Wednesday 4 September 2019, 6.30pm - 9.00pm
South & East Region
Aboriginal Cultural Awareness Workshop - Berri
Wednesday 18 September 2019, 6.00pm - 9.30pm
Immunisation Practice in Primary Healthcare - Mount Gambier
Tuesday 22 October 2019, 8.30am - 1.00pm
Metro Region
17th Rural Weekend Update on Cardiovascular Management - Adelaide
Saturday 14 September to Sunday 15 September 2019
Implanon NXT Training for Registered Nurses and Midwives - Woodville
Tuesday 22 October 2019, 6.00pm - 8.30pm
Advanced Life Support (ALS) - Adelaide
Saturday 28 September 2019
Register Here
2019 Australian Rural & Remote Mental Health Symposium - Adelaide
Monday 28 October to Wednesday 30 October 2019
HOW2 Create LGBTI Inclusive Services - Woodville
Starts 4 October 2019, 9.30am - 2.30pm
(4 sessions over 6 weeks)
Helen Mayo House Annual Conference Parenting: Passions and Pain - Adelaide
Monday 25 November to Tuesday 26 November 2019
2019 AAPM National Conference - Queensland
Tuesday 1 October to Friday 4 October 2019
Lead the Way Towards Wellbeing Conference 2019 - Sydney
Thursday 31 October to Friday 1 November 2019 Register Here
RMA19 Conference - Gold Coast
Thursday 24 October - Saturday 26 October 2019
Register Here
Make Dying Deadly - Palliative Care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Communities Symposium - Brisbane
Friday 1 November 2019 Register Here
Chronic Disease Management and Healthy Ageing Program
APNA's new 12 month program offers over 50 hours of online and face-to-face learning, designed for nurses by nurses in primary health care.
Mental Health Course
A four-week online Mental Health course, with a specialised focus on rural and remote Australia by addressing issues such as isolation and drought. Starting Thursday 7 November 2019.

Beckwith Park, 30 Tanunda Road, Nuriootpa SA 5355
PO Box 868, Nuriootpa SA 5355
T  08 8565 8900    F  08 8311 1723
SA Rural Health Network trading as Country SA PHN.
Country SA PHN gratefully acknowledge the financial and other
support from the Australian Government Department of Health.
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