• A recent survey conducted by the Royal Australasian College of Physicians found that only 17 per cent of physicians believed doctors were always aware of their patients’ death-related preferences.
• The New South Wales Health Department has confirmed that a person has died after contracting legionnaires’ disease at Burwood, in Sydney’s inner-west.
• The Chiropractic Board of Australia has received an undertaking that Dr Ian John Rossborough will not treat anyone aged under 18 years before June 2. His video cracking the back of a newborn baby went viral and has been temporarily banned from treating children.
News on Health Professional Radio. Today is the 18th of May 2016. Read by Rebecca Foster. Health News
Australia is developing a death-denying culture that needs to change, according to some of Australia’s most senior doctors.
A recent survey conducted by the Royal Australasian College of Physicians found that only 17 per cent of physicians believed doctors were always aware of their patients’ death-related preferences.
The lack of discussion on such matters is one of a number of issues being discussed by about 1,000 physicians at their annual congress in Adelaide.
“We still all have to die and there’s still a period where we can no longer really extend life,” the college’s outgoing president, Professor Nick Talley, said.
“There is a bit of death-defying culture, one almost might believe, some people believe they won’t die.”
The college’s incoming president, Catherine Yelland, maintains there are many benefits to planning end-of-life care.
“It means that we can then try to fulfil the patient’s wishes as much as is possible, that we actually understand what it is they want, how they want to die, where they want to die,” she said.
“It also means that their family is aware that this is going to happen and can prepare for that, and can also respect the person’s wishes in terms of their treatment and how best the family can help with that.”
The college has made 28 recommendations on the topic, including improving communication skills for doctors.
The college has formed a working party to investigating questions around whether euthanasia should be an option for the terminally ill.
The college will release a discussion paper and recommendations on euthanasia, but it could not give a timeframe on when it will happen.
A person has died after contracting legionnaires’ disease at Burwood, in Sydney’s inner-west, the New South Wales Health Department has confirmed.
Three people have fallen ill in the area in the past week or so, health authorities said.
Director of Public Health Dr Leena Gupta said the person died last week, and two other people had also been affected.
“One patient unfortunately has passed away, another patient has been discharged, and another patient is still in hospital,” she said.
“These three cases are not related to the CBD outbreak. This afternoon we found a small case, all of which have been in the Burwood area.”
Dr Gupta said health authorities and Burwood Council were investigating all the cooling towers in the area, as the disease is associated with contaminated air-conditioning systems.
It follows an outbreak in Sydney’s CBD earlier this month in which five cases were confirmed by health authorities.
The death is the second legionnaires’ fatality in NSW this year – a man aged in his 80s died in March after contracting the disease in the CBD.
A Melbourne chiropractor who cracked the back of a newborn baby in a video that went viral has been temporarily banned from treating children.
The Chiropractic Board of Australia has received an undertaking that Dr Ian John Rossborough will not treat anyone aged under 18 years before June 2.
Dr Rossborough recently appeared in a video where he was seen manipulating the spine of a four-day-old baby to treat colic.
His agreement not to treat children followed a number of concerns raised by Victorian Health Minister Jill Hennessy with the board and the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency.
Earlier this month she said the State Government would crack down on rogue chiropractors, following claims the health practitioners could cure autism and other behavioural issues.
Ms Hennessy said she still had concerns about claims made by a number of chiropractors.