Consumers Shaping Health

Consumers Shaping Health is a bi-monthly newsletter published by the Consumers Forum of Australia (CHF) for members, consumer representatives and stakeholders in health. It promotes current advocacy work of CHF in its three priority areas: safety and quality in health care; health care for people with chronic conditions; and safe and appropriate use of medicines.   ISSN 1835-2057 (Print)   ISSN 1835-2065 (Online)

Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 9, issue 5, October 2015
Contents:This edition contains a report of the highlights from our Members and Stakeholders Forum held in August 2015, as well as links to the presentations.
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 9, issue 3, June 2015
Contents:Budget 2015: CHF's initial response; Pharmacy agreement offers pills with a sugar coating; Online health records trial a big step forward; What patients want from clinicians but often don't get: being treated as an individual; Choosing Wisely; Looking for ways to engage your consumers?; Congratulations Senator Di Natale; Recent submissions
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 9, issue 2, April 2015
Contents:CHF's new CEO; Pharmacy deal in urgent need of new script; Health Minister Ley: 'above all, consumer-focused'; Now co-pay is cremated, time to revive Medicare; Asthma Australia conference; In sickness and in health; Why do I even need this test?; "Frequent flyer" claim shown to be a sick joke for many patients; AHHA Think Tank on Reform of the Federation and Health; Life Saving Drugs Programme Review
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 9, issue 1, February 2015
Contents:Nothing about us, without us!;Tackling obesity: Australia wants change; Price Signals and Health Hazards; Federal Government must not send medicines safety checks offshore; Thanks and farewell to Adam; The costs of chronic illness; Would you like to be part of Consumers Shaping Health?; Problems with Federal/State buck-passing?
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 8, issue 6, December 2014
Contents:CHF celebrates another year of success at the AGM and Lecture in Honour, CHF welcomes new Board members, Former CHF Chair awarded Honorary Life Member, Co-payment a budget barnacle, It's not a hand out, it's a hand up, Statement on the Review of Medicines and Medical Devices Regulation, Health cuts will be even harsher for mental health patients, Improving Integrated Healthcare, The evolution we need now, Correction
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 8, issue 5, October 2014
Contents:Features in this edition include: Health in a Time of Change: the Role for Consumers and Community; Groups reject secret co-payment talks when it's about the wellbeing of ALL of us; Technology and Chronic Illness; The Role of Pharmacists in Primary Care should be Debated; Patient Power: End Secrecy on Bad Apple Doctors; 'Public interest rather than pharmacy interest' – CHF on the Competition Policy Review; Save the Date - CHF AGM
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 8, issue 4, August 2014
Contents:When does medical confidentiality become unjustified secrecy?, Rumble of evidence against co-payment turns into avalanche, Dying is a serious business, CHF & HCRRA talk rural health, Establishment of Primary Health Networks, Unwarranted surgery: time to take the gloves off, CHF on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement negotiations, Call for consumer stories, Survey of CHF publications, In Brief
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 8, issue 3, June 2014
Contents:Features in this issue include:$8.5 billion ripped out of health care, Australian health bodies join forces against Government co-payment model, Medicare co-payment plan a massive concern to voters new poll finds, Keeping the health system universal without blowing the budget, MyHealthRecord revives hope for eHealth, Consumers should be wary about homeopathic remedies, Call for consumer stories, Survey of CHF publications, In Brief
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 8, issue 2, April 2014
Contents:Features in this issue include:CHF Co-Payment Report Makes an Impact, CHF Slams Co-Payments at the Senate Audit Inquiry, Out-of-Pocket Inquiry a Win for Consumers, Minister Questions Fee-for-Service, Hospital Waiting Times Highlight the Need for Change, Means-Testing Medicare Would Hurt Consumers, Medibank Sale Should Deliver Dividends for Health Consumers, CHF Condemns the Shutdown of Food Labelling Site CHF Calls on La Trobe to Axe Swisse Research Deal, Limiting Medicine Checks will Hurt Consumers, Drug Resistant Infections: Consumers Need the Figures, CHF Welcomes Pharmaceutical Benefits Pricing Authority Decision, In Brief
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 8, issue 1, January 2014
Contents:Features in this issue include: Consumers Health Forum Leadership Changes, CHF Outlines Budget Priorities, GP Co-Payments a Step in the Wrong Direction, Health Insurance Price Rise Hurts Consumers, Lower Medicine Prices Welcomed by Consumers, Consumers Contribute to Medicare Local Review, One Step Closer to Universal Dental Care, Why Do I Even Need This Test? Local Responses Needed to Stop Preventable Deaths, Preferential GP Visits Strike at the Heart of Medicare, Government Explores Medibank Private Sale, CHF Joins Accredited Pharmacists Reference Group of the Society of Hospital Pharmacists Australia (SHPA), Prescribing Pathway Welcomed by Consumers, Changes Proposed to the TGA, AllTrials Campaign Gains Momentum, In Brief
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 7, issue 6, December 2013
Contents:Features in this issue include: CHF bids farewell to a visionary and courageous leader, Increasing costs highlights the need for a Medicare rethink, Timely review into Personally Controlled Electronic Health Records system, Chemotherapy promise welcomed, CHF celebrates another year of success at the AGM and Lecture in Honour, CHF board members re-elected, CHF welcomes PBS threshold increase, Medicare Local Review – an opportunity to learn and evolve, CHF hopes health remains a focus for Labor in Opposition, CHF expresses alarm at growing obesity rates, Out-of-pocket costs continue to grow, CHF welcomes a focus on medicines safety, Health fund nib exploring new options and models, Big differences in hospitalisations demand investigation, Still ticking away… medicine savings Australians never see, Drug adverse reaction reporting: consumers overlooked, Congratulations Robert Pask
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 7, issue 5, October 2013
Contents:Features in this issue include: CHF Welcomes the New Government, New Minister and New Parliament,Health and the Election,The Healthcare Challenge for the 44th Parliament of Australia,Mend Medicare – Highlighting Health Issues in the Lead Up to the Election, CHF participates in National Press Club Aged Care Forum, Stand Up For Cheaper Medicines, Ticking Away….Medicine Savings Australians Never See, Consumers Share Experiences as Part of the Chemotherapy Funding Review, Informed Consent a major focus for CHF, Want better healthcare? Work with those that know what works, and what doesn't, Big Tobacco No Longer Making Political Donations, Alarm around AAT decision to allow the registration of Di-Gensic and Doloxene, Calls for National Inquiry into Rising Direct Health Costs for Australians, Reducing Health Costs While Improving Health Outcomes,Dr Stephen Duckett to give 2013 Lecture in Honour of the late Rev Dr Christopher Newell AM
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 7, issue 4, August 2013
Contents: Features in this issue include: Out of pocket costs loom as an election issue; Changes to the Ministry; Consumers to be consulted on chemotherapy review; ANAO to audit Fifth Community Pharmacy Agreement; CHF contributes to parliamentary inquiries;Progress towards better teeth; New PBS listings highlight the need for reform; Consumers call for greater transparency in medicines regulation; Stephen Murby warns of the risks of biosimilars; CHF joins international push for transparency in clinical trials; New report exposes gaps in healthcare; Investment in medical research welcomed by consumers; Government passes aged care reforms; Consumers welcome new front of pack labelling system; Plain packaging is delivering results; CHF contributes to HTAi in Seoul; Consumer keynote at Lead Clinicians Forum
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 7, issue 3, June 2013
Contents:Feature articles in this issue include: Budget offers no relief for hip pocket pain; Hip Pocket Pain campaign makes an impact; CHF contributes to the World Health Assembly; Australian Government partners with IAPO and WHO on medication safety; Wait times increase despite hospital funding; Outcomes on chemotherapy drugs; ANAO audit of Pharmacy Agreement welcome; CHF calls for better regulation of medical devices; Drug decisions highlight the need for reform; McKeon Review recognises consumer role in research; CHF CEO re-elected to the IAPO Governing Board; Consumers want improved pharmaceutical transparency.
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 7, issue 2, April 2013
Contents:In this issue: Bad drug deal for taxpayers; More uncertainty over Home Medicines Reviews; Consumers the losers in Federal State funding battle; CHF supports health insurance sustainability; Health issues across international borders; Chemotherapy drug pricing at Senate inquiry; It has to be about health outcomes, patient experience and working in partnership; Healthy Communities Report a step forward, but more needed; Report released – Senate inquiry on social determinants of health; NHMRC supporting consumer participation in research; New consumer voice on the PBAC; CHF CEO to contribute to human services planning; Opportunities for pharmacy outlined at Neil Naismith lecture; Changes to the Ministry; CHF contributing to Medical Journal of Australia; Health Voices to focus on out of pocket costs
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 7, issue 1, February 2013
Contents:In this issue: CHF Outlines Election Priorities; Coalition Releases Election Platform; Universal ambulance cover must be a national priority; Ita Buttrose Named Australian of the Year; Anticoagulant review raises more questions than answers; MA Code of Conduct approved,­ with a catch; Draft determination to allow GP fee setting; NHPA Emergency data first national baseline;; Consumers’ voices heard on key health issues; New food labelling regulations introduce minimum standards; Consumer Centred Care at the Forefront of WHO Executive Board Meeting
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 6, issue 7, December 2012
Contents:In this issue: Complementary medicines under the spotlight; New Chair appointed; AGM and Lecture in Honour; Our Health, Our Community project launched, Annual Report available; CHF Budget submission to Federal Government; McKeon Review cannot be another missed opportunity; Consumers cautious on MYEFO impact; Out of pocket medical bills hurting consumers; CHF submissions to major inquiries; CHF position on chemotherapy medication; In Brief
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 6, issue 5, October 2012
Contents:In this issue: Decision made on PBS deferral, New dental scheme to put bite on tooth decay, OurHealth is here!, Why does Australia allow unsafe medication to stay on the market?,Consumers perspective heard in Parliamentary Committee hearings, Medicare Locals launched, NSW Health consumers find their voice, Complementary Healthcare Code of Conduct not strong enough, New report confirms Australia among most expensive health system, International appointment for CHF CEO
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 6, issue 4, August 2012
Contents:Features in this month’s Consumers Shaping Health include Health System Performance – how do we shape up?, Medicines Australia Code doesn’t go far enough towards transparency, Government responds on PBS inquiry, Progress on NDIS good for consumers, Consumers the focus of NZ pharmacy funding, Free atorvastatin raises more questions about the cost of medicines, PIP inquiry emphasises informed consent and post market surveillance, TGA blueprint implementation plan flags more consultation, PCEHR system now live, CHF provides more advice to the McKeon Review.
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 6, issue 3, June 2012
Contents:The June edition of Consumers Shaping Health is now available. Features in this month’s Consumers Shaping Health include: Action taken on teeth at last, a healthy Budget for consumers, the PIP Inquiry – Recommendations from previous reviews must be implemented, BUPA Foundation award for CHF, clinical trials critical to Australia’s health and evidence requirements in use of medicines
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 6, issue 2, April 2012
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 6, issue 1, February 2012
Contents:New health Minister Tanya Plibersek welcomed; PCEHR Senate inquiry submission; regulatory reform of TGA needed in wake of PIP implant scare; Price disclosure leads to cheaper drugs; reform underway in not-for-profit sector; Government review anticoagulants.
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 5, issue 6, December 2011
Contents:Call for Pharmacy Agreement Inquiry welcomed; Consumer views incorporated into eHealth legislation; Time for action on devices safety; CHF delivers 2012 13 Budget Submission; Consumers central to health reform discussions; Shared values emphasised at nursing conference.
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 5, issue 5, October 2011
Contents:Consumers welcome moratorium on deferrals; Would you like coke and fries with your prescription? Audit Office critical of complementary medicines regulation; Consumers have a voice at Senate inquiries; Health reform — taking on the challenge; Personally Controlled Electronic Health Record; Medicines, Health Technologies and Reform Workshop; Consumers must be at the heart of HTA initiatives; Clinical trials factsheet launched; Health of the Nation; Farewell Lloyd Sansom
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 5, issue 4, August 2011
Contents:CHF wants reversal of changes to medicines listings policy; New Chair for PBAC; New mental health consumer organisation; CHF provides input to Parliamentary inquiries; COAG Reform Council Report on health system performance; PCEHR Legislation Issues Paper; Review urges greater TGA transparency
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 5, issue 3, June 2011
Contents:Keep your Cabinet out of our medicines /CHF Welcomes Extra Health Spending in 2011-12 Budget / Complementary Medicines – More Transparency Needed / Plain Packaging for Cigarettes Most Welcome / New National Health Performance Authority / Government Moves on Vaccine Safety / Governance Must be Central to New PCEHR System / Consumers Expect Health Reform Structures to Connect with Community
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 5, issue 2, April 2011
Contents:New Health Policy Developments / Consumers question Cabinet medicines decision / NSW People’s Parliament / Caring for Older Australians and National Palliative Care Strategy / Personally Controlled Electronic Health Records / Medical Benefits Schedule / Clinical Trials Action Group / Health Reform Priorities / New Peak Body for NSW / Medicare Locals / Private Health Insurance
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 5, issue 1, February 2011
Contents:The Year of Getting Things Done / Our Health, Our Community / TGA Transparency Review / Testing of Complementary Medicines / Healthcare Costs
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 4, issue 6, December 2010
Contents:Consumers Health Forum Annual General Meeting / TGA Transparency Review / Consumers Welcome Cheaper Medicines / Consumers Must Be Involved in eHealth Roll Out / Permanent Safety and Quality Commission / Launch of Updated Private Health Insurance Website / Early Pilot of Diabetes Coordinated Care / Preventive Health Agency
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 4, issue 5, October 2010
Contents:Health Politics / Our Health, Our Community / Policy into Action Medicines Policy / Vale Sheila Rimmer AM / Health in the Bush / eHealth time to connect
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 4, issue 4, August 2010
Contents:Health Reform and the Federal Election / Medicines industry faces stricter controls / MyHospitals website a good start / Unique Health Identifiers a vital first step / Another move in the right direction for the TGA / CHF presents to Senate Inquiry on the COAG Reforms Relating to Health and Hospitals
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 4, issue 3, June 2010
Contents:Budget provides major pieces for Health Reform jigsaw / CHF welcomes COAG outcomes / E-Health needs strong community and industry support / Parliamentary Secretary for Health talks reform with consumers around Australia / Consumer provisions in Fifth CPA welcome / CHF presents to Senate Inquiry on the Health Practitioner Regulation (Consequential Amendments) Bill / PBS Reforms / Consumer role in developing Quality Framework for the Medical Benefits Schedule
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 4, issue 2, April 2010
Contents:Health reform needs to be more about consumer outcomes; less about politics / CHF welcomes focus of new GP payments on health / eHealth - get the Individual Health Identifier (IHI) building block in place / National Manager of the TGA, addresses CHF Members' Policy Forum / CHF signs National Compact / Consumers talk Fifth Community Pharmacy Agreement (Fifth CPA)
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 4, issue 1, February 2010
Contents:2010-11 Budget Submission calls for better dental care and emphasises consumer participation in achieving major reform / Consumers inform Fifth Community Pharmacy Agreement / Health Technology Assessment / Australia needs a single 'principles-based' Code of Conduct for therapeutic goods / Cataract rebates - finally a resolution / Consumers talk pathology / Keeping Clinical Trials in Australia
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 3, issue 6, December 2009
Contents:Health consumers advocate reform with Minister Roxon and consumers input to Fifth Community Pharmacy Agreement.
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 3, issue 5, October 2009
Contents:The Government and medical specialists continued to debate the proposed (and some have now been passed in the Senate) cuts to Medicare rebates.
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 3, issue 4, August 2009
Contents:CHF has called on the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) to investigate claims that pathology companies are pressuring doctors to reduce bulk-billing of pathology services.
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 3, issue 3, June 2009
Contents:The 2009-10 Federal Health Budget is a step towards the promised reform of the health system but does not deliver some important initiatives that consumers wanted.
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 3, issue 2, April 2009
Contents:Australia needs a national registration scheme / People-centred care must drive reform / Local consumers share their views / Consumers influence doctors' code / Evidence, not spin, needed for weight loss products / Look beyond medicine for solutions / Measuring patient outcomes is a good idea
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 3, issue 1, February 2009
Contents:Report focuses on consumers / New Executive Director joins CHF / Consumers want preventive health / Safety and quality workshop / CHF works with Divisions of General Practice / CHF works with the health professions / Private Health project highlights consumer needs / Medical Technologies and Devices
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 2, issue 5, November 2008
Contents:Health Minister helps CHF celebrate 21 years / New Chairperson to further strengthen CHF / Safety and quality is everyone's business / Celebrate, Challenge and Change / CHF project looks at workforce issues / Representative’s program boosted
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 2, issue 4, September 2008
Contents:Health reforms need consumer voice / E-health must gain consumer confidence / Involve community in team-based care / Better approval and monitoring process needed / Consumers included in accreditation scheme
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 2, issue 3, July 2008
Contents:Primary health care reform offers hope / Looking forward, looking back / CHF farewells Cristopher Newell / CHF welcomes national e-health strategy / New CHF project begins / Workshop shares medicines information
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 2, issue 2, May 2008
Contents:Budget funds health reform / New CHF project on medicines / 2020 health to centre on consumers / Involving people in research / E-health for consumers / Health funding dictates health
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 2, issue 1, March 2008
Contents:Minister encourages consumers / Consumer views welcomed / Health consumers talk health rights / Agreement addresses consumer issues / New devices need better monitoring / A step towards electronic health records / Get to know your medicines
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 1, issue 3, December 2007
Contents:Government must consult consumers / Improve care coordination / Expert panel to monitor broader health cover / Minimise costs to consumers / Mackay health consumers speak out / Consumer representative makes history
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 1, issue 2, October 2007
Contents:Consumers shape safety and quality in health care / Close the gaps in health care / Quality use of medicines will improve with better information / Better information for better health
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Issue:Consumers Shaping Health, vol 1, issue 1, August 2007
Contents:What health consumers want / Why listen to consumers? / CHF improves the health system / CHF has a national voice
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