The Health News – 23 November 2015

Overview:
• Tasmania’s aged care sector has called on the State Government to close hospital beds in favour of more resources in preventative health care. Aged and Community Services Tasmania (ACST) chief executive Darren Mathewson said the average hospital bed cost taxpayers up to $1,600 a day.

• Expectant mothers will be able to take private midwives into public hospitals as part of a pilot program to begin in Victoria next year, so they can experience continuity of care throughout their pregnancy.

• The Garvan Institute’s Kinghorn Centre for Clinical Genomics (KCCG) is embarking on a collaborative genome sequencing project with the Sax Institute, a largest ongoing study of healthy ageing in the southern hemisphere.

News on Health Professional Radio.  Today is the 23rd November 2015. Read by Rebecca Foster.  Health News

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-11-21/tasmanian-government-urged-to-focus-on-preventative-health/6960400

Tasmania’s aged care sector has called on the State Government to close hospital beds in favour of more resources in preventative health care.

The industry has released a discussion paper outlining a “proposed transformation of Tasmania’s health and aged services landscape”.

It said the Government should be aim to close hospital beds if it is serious about preventative health and wellbeing.

Aged and Community Services Tasmania (ACST) chief executive Darren Mathewson said the average hospital bed cost taxpayers up to $1,600 a day.

“If we continue to fund the sickness model in this state and continue to think that hospitals are the answer then we are heading in the wrong direction,” he said.

“What we need to do is resource the areas that will allow us not to put people in hospital when they don’t need to be and in effect, lets state to the community that we want to close hospital beds because we actually want a healthier population of people.”

Tasmania has the nation’s fastest ageing population. By 2030, it is projected that one in four Tasmanians will be aged over 65.

In its discussion paper, ACST said there needed to be a focus on developing “aged friendly communities”.

Mr Mathewson believes the State Government’s health reform process has promised much but delivered little.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-11-21/trial-of-private-midwives-in-public-hospitals-to-begin-in-2016/6961020

Expectant mothers will be able to take private midwives into public hospitals as part of a pilot program to begin in Victoria next year, so they can experience continuity of care throughout their pregnancy.

The Victorian Government said the trial would take place at Monash Health and Northern Health, in Melbourne, in mid 2016.

Currently women are not able to have a private midwife during a birth at a public hospital.

The Government said it would consider how the program could be expanded across the state following the trial.

It said the plan meant women would be able to see the same midwife throughout their entire pregnancy and birth.

Health Minister Jill Hennessy said it gave mums more choice about the support they receive.

“It means women can have continuity of care, they can have the same midwife that they start their pregnancy journey with right through to the end of that birthing process,” Ms Hennessy said.

“What the pilot is really doing is helping Monash Health and Northern Health with some of the administrative and credential checking processes.

“These are private midwives, they are credentialed and regulated by the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia.

Ms Hennessy said there was no limit to the number of women allowed to take part in the program, but about 1,000 families took it up when first introduced in Queensland.

Private midwife Andrea Quanchi said the idea would help reduce any fear and confusion for women.

http://www.garvan.org.au/news-events/news/45-and-up-working-with-australias-biggest-health-study

The Garvan Institute’s Kinghorn Centre for Clinical Genomics (KCCG) is embarking on a collaborative genome sequencing project with the Sax Institute, whose ‘45 and Up’ study is the largest ongoing study of healthy ageing in the southern hemisphere.

Blood samples from two thousand of the study’s participants will form part of the NSW Government-funded Medical Genome Reference Bank – the largest of its kind in the world. Genome sequencing of the samples by KCCG will help researchers identify what the genetic profiles of the “wellderly” look like, and use these as a filter to distinguish between normal genetic variation and variation caused by disease.

The full story is available on the Sax Institute website