The Health News – 31 March 2014

Overview

  • Health unions have spoken out against attempts by the QLD gov to take them to court concerning their opposition to new work contracts for doctors in the state.
  • New immunisation statistics show vaccination rates for young children in Western Australia’s Great Southern and south-west are below the national average.
  • Research presented at the American College of Cardiology conference recently showed that the start of daylight savings is followed by a spike in heart attacks, and the end followed by a drop.


Doctors’ contracts dispute: Unions unfazed by Queensland Government legal action – no author listed

Health unions have spoken out against attempts by the QLD gov to take them to court concerning their opposition to new work contracts for doctors in the state.

QLD health has appealed to the federal court in Brisbane apparently to stop the release of information they say misrepresents the government’s position on individual employment contracts.

Doctors and the unions representing them fear the contracts will see widespread pay cuts of around 30% and the removal of unfair dismissal protection. Queensland Health director-general Ian

Maynard says “The unions are exaggerating and not being factual and that is why legal action is being taken.

These proceedings do not injunct unions and professional organisations from talking with their doctors and presenting information. I openly encourage unions and professional organisations to talk with our doctors.

This application targets specific documents which are dressed up as legal opinion and they are not legal opinion.

” But Together Union secretary Alex Scott says “The move will escalate the dispute and the Newman Government’s answer to everything is legal action.

This would have cost the Government tens of thousands of dollars in taxpayers’ dollars for an interstate law firm to come up with a novel and completely illegitimate legal basis for law that is not relevant for Queensland and not relevant for the doctors dispute.

Once again we are seeing taxpayers money flushed down the toilet to try and silence the criticism of this Government.

I think we are seeing a new low in desperation from this Government because they’re not only attacking (corruption fighter) Tony Fitzgerald and (former solicitor-general) Walter Sofronoff and the whole legal community, they are now taking action through the courts to try to stop what is a very significant debate about the future of the hospital system.”

Figures show child immunisation rates lagging in WA’s south-west – no author listed

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-03-28/figures-show-child-immunisation-rates-lagging-in/5352166

New immunisation statisctics show vaccination rates for young children in Western Australia’s Great Southern and south-west are below the national average.

The report by the National Health Performance Authority found there was a significant gap between the best and worst performing regions in the percentage of children who were fully immunised.

The report put the south-west region, which also includes the Great Southern, in the bottom half of all Australian regions.

It is below the national average in all three age groups measured, which are children aged one, two and five. However, the region had the second highest rate of full immunisation in WA, behind only Perth’s north metropolitan area.

Heart attacks spike following start of daylight saving time, US study finds – no author listed

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-03-30/heart-attack-spike-follows-daylight-saving-time-study-says/5354546

Research presented at the American College of Cardiology conference recently showed that the start of daylight savings is followed by a spike in heart attacks, and the end followed by a drop.

The phenomenon was limited to the start and end of the daylight saving period, but the study’s authors said the knowledge will help emergency rooms prepare for an increase in heart attacks during the beginning of these periods.

Lead author Amneet Sandhu, cardiology fellow at the University of Colarado said “It may be that we, as people, are very sensitive to the loss of even one hour’s sleep.

It may mean that people who are already vulnerable to heart disease may be at greater risk right after sudden time changes.

” The findings were based on data from a number of Michigan hospitals.

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