The Health News – 19 May 2017

Overview:

• The Emergency Plus app was developed by the Triple Zero Awareness Working Group in 2013 and can be used anywhere in Australia It displays latitude and longitude coordinates derived from the smartphone’s GPS function and is therefore, not affected by poor mobile phone reception.

• A scathing report from an inquiry into the off-protocol prescribing of chemotherapy by oncologist Dr John Grygiel found: “Sydney’s St Vincent’s Hospitals senior management put their public standing ahead of the best interests of their patients as the matter unfolded and quickly became a full-blown scandal.” The hospital has issued a statement denying the finding “in the strongest possible terms”, and referred to the findings of a previous inquiry.

• Complaints are mounting about the National Disability Insurance Scheme after it shifted from trial phase to full scheme mid-last year. Disability organisations have argued the planning process for participants is often rushed, leaving people without services and equipment they need. Many of these poor-quality plans, they said, were because crucial planning meetings had been held over the phone and not in person.

News on Health Professional Radio. Today is the  19th of May 2017. Read by Rebecca Foster. Health News

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-05-18/quick-thinking-12-year-old-helps-stricken-grandmother/8531020

A grandmother who had a serious fall near a waterfall on the Atherton Tablelands has her quick thinking 12-year-old granddaughter and a smartphone app to thank for her rescue.

Sarah Grandcourt was walking with her sister Grace and grandmother Virginia Manners at Halls Falls in the Herberton Range Conservation Park in early April.

Her grandmother slipped on rocks and fell around 10 metres into a rock pool.

Ms Manners was badly injured and needed an ambulance so Sarah ran back to the carpark to get phone reception.

She phoned her dad who called Queensland Ambulance (QAS), who in turn called Sarah back for details.

The trouble was, Sarah could not explain exactly where the waterfall was.

“Well, they asked me where I was and I didn’t know exactly how to describe it, so they asked me to download this app [called] Emergency+,” she said.

“I didn’t understand …[the] phone very well because it was …[very] old.”

Sarah calmly followed the instructions of the emergency medical dispatcher in Cairns.

“I had to stay calm because I was the oldest kid there so I had to show them that it was okay,” she said.

All ended well, although Ms Manners sustained broken ribs.

On Wednesday at the Ambulance Operations Centre in Cairns, Queensland Health Minister Cameron Dick presented Sarah with a certificate of appreciation.

The Emergency Plus app was developed by the Triple Zero Awareness Working Group in 2013 and can be used anywhere in Australia

It displays latitude and longitude coordinates derived from the smartphone’s GPS function and is therefore, not affected by poor mobile phone reception.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-05-18/st-vincents-chemotherapy-dosage-report-sparks-calls-for-sackings/8537596

There are calls for senior figures at Sydney’s St Vincent’s Hospital to be sacked, after a parliamentary committee concluded it could not discount the possibility the hospital tried to cover up a chemotherapy dosage controversy.

A scathing report from an inquiry into the off-protocol prescribing of chemotherapy by oncologist Dr John Grygiel found: “the hospital’s senior management put their public standing ahead of the best interests of their patients as the matter unfolded and quickly became a full-blown scandal.”

The hospital has issued a statement denying the finding “in the strongest possible terms”, and referred to the findings of a previous inquiry.

“The exhaustive and independent Cancer Institute NSW inquiry did not produce any material to suggest anything of that nature had occurred,” the statement said.

Greens Committee member Jeremy Buckingham said the Minister needed to ensure those responsible were punished.

Opposition health spokesman Walt Secord said the hospital was dragged kicking and screaming to accountability after the ABC’s 7.30 program exposed the controversy.

Mr Secord said he was now calling for a full public apology from NSW Health to the affected patients and their families, and for St Vincent’s to be subject to more government scrutiny.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-05-18/extra-staff-needed-to-fix-ndis-problems-labor-says/8538360

People with disabilities are struggling to get answers from the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), Labor says, as it urges the Government to boost funding for the agency overseeing its troubled rollout.

Complaints are mounting about the NDIS after it shifted from trial phase to full scheme mid-last year.

Disability organisations have argued the planning process for participants is …often rushed, leaving people without services and equipment they need.

Many of these poor-quality plans, they said, were because crucial planning meetings had been held over the phone and not in person.

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten and Labor’s spokesman for families and social services, Jenny Macklin, met with NDIS participants in Geelong and said they were troubled by what they heard.

Disability service providers earlier this month demanded urgent improvements to the NDIS.

More than 75,000 people are now part of the scheme, but many in the sector say speed is being prioritised over quality in the planning process.