December 2022 Volume 8 Issue 12

Message from the CEO

Mark Hartigan

It has been yet another challenging year for many of us – professionally and personally. The effects of COVID-19 have continued to change the way we do business and many aspects of the way we live our lives. Living in uncertain times, combined with the increasing cost of living and consecutive interest rate rises has resulted in many of us feeling stressed or anxious. Country SA PHN is acutely aware of the challenges that face many of our country South Australian communities. Read more...

Country SA PHN commissioned service providers

Country SA PHN commissions a variety of Mental Health programs across country SA. Do you know what Mental Health programs are in your region. To find out more click here.

General News

Pop-up COVID-19 vaccination clinics
Country SA PHN recently funded and supported pop-up COVID-19 Vaccination clinics at two Port Augusta market days.  The uptake of vaccination at both clinics was positive and access to a drop-in style service was popular. A total of 32 vaccinations were given across both events. The vaccination clinics were conducted by Stellar Health and services were provided by one of their experienced Registered Nurses Credentialed in Immunisation Administration with SA Health and their Aboriginal Cultural Consultant. 

Pathways of care for people living with dementia
It is estimated there are 40,300 people living with dementia in South Australia in 2022. Without a medical breakthrough, the number of people living with dementia is expected to increase to an estimated 73,000 people in 2058.  In 2019-20 over half (54%) permanent residential aged care residents in Australia had dementia. Read more...

Palliative care services during the holiday period
As we head towards Christmas festivities and welcome in 2023, Country SA PHN acknowledges that these occasions can be difficult for those who are grieving the loss or anticipated loss of a loved one. Family and togetherness are key to Christmas and New Year, and when we are missing the physical presence of someone we love, these celebrations can make us feel alone in times that once provided joy. Read more...

New Year Resolutions with HealthPathways!
As the new year approaches, it’s always a great time for reflection and to focus on the new year ahead. Many people reflect on their health and their lifestyle habits and make resolutions to make positive changes. HealthPathways has numerous pages that see increased popularity in January. Read more...

Gender Connect Country SA attends Port Pirie Picnic in the Park
Sean and Brynn from the Gender Connect Country SA team recently attended the Port Pirie Picnic in the Park to make some connections with the local community and services at large. Overall it was a great day, and it makes it very heart-warming to be able to reach out directly to families with young trans and gender diverse community members and let them know that our Gender Connect Country SA service exists for both them and their young person.  Read more...

Callout to Riverland Mallee Coorong GPs to help promote SA’s JEV Serosurvey Project
The National Centre for Immunisation Research and Surveillance (NCIRS) is working with health authorities across Australia to understand more about the extent and mechanisms of transmission of the Japanese Encephalitis Virus (JEV), through the introduction of a national human JEV Serosurveillance Program to be targeted to specific regional areas. Read more...

Telehealth Mood Management Group
The Black Dog Institute Psychology Clinic will be offering an 11-session cognitive-behavioural therapy group for depression and anxiety via telehealth. The course is suitable for adult patients with depression or mixed depression-anxiety. Read more...

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Worker/Practitioner Mentoring Program
Applications open at the beginning of February 2023 with the program commencing at the end of March 2023. The aim of the program is to provide culturally safe and appropriate professional development opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workers and Health Practitioners to develop and use diabetes knowledge. Read more...

Practice Resources

COVID-19 remote health monitoring to continue for rural patients
Remote health monitoring for regional and rural COVID-19 patients with underlying chronic health conditions will be maintained when the service is discontinued in metropolitan areas after Saturday 31 December 2022. Read more...

Chronic health conditions remote health monitoring
Remote health monitoring is also available to rural patients with chronic health conditions, including heart and respiratory disease, hypertension and infections and during post-operative recovery. Read more...

Information in General Practice – RACGP Resource
Information security is essential in general practice. Creating an informed, proactive cyber secure workplace culture requires continuous learning and is essential to the resilience and success of your practice and the provision of safe, high-quality healthcare. Download the resource here

Australian STI Management Guidelines for use in Primary Care
The guidelines are an online resource for primary care health professionals, providing concise information to support the prevention, testing, diagnosis, management, and treatment of sexually transmissible infections (STIs) for adults and adolescents. Read more...

New guiding principles for medication management 
Three national quality use of medicines (QUM) publications have been updated to improve the quality and safety of medication management for all Australians. Read more...

Gender Connect Country SA
A free service that provides information and support from Peer Support Workers with lived experience of gender diversity. Read more...

Electronic prescriptions Podcast: A guide for practice managers
Find out what practice managers can do to get ready for implementation with advice from leading health professionals currently benefiting from electronic prescriptions in their practices. An Australian Digital Health Agency Podcast. Listen here...

COVID-19 Symptom Checker translated assets
To help more Australians understand their COVID symptoms, what care they need and if they may be eligible for antiviral treatment, the healthdirect COVID-19 Symptom and Antiviral Eligibility Checker is now available in 11 languages. Read more...

Self collection - a cervical screening game changer for women after menopause
A big change to cervical screening commenced in July 2022. A self-collection option is now available to everyone who is due for their cervical screening test. Read more...

Pain Revolution Rural Outreach Tour
The Pain Revolution Rural Outreach Touris a community awareness and fundraising event where over the course of a week, a group of 50+ cyclists, educators and clinicians tour the Southest region, undertaking community and health professional engagement sessions in rural and regional towns, in collaboration with local agencies. Read more...

nitial Assessment and Referral - Decision Support Tool Update
The Initial Assessment and Referral (IAR) is an initiative of the Australian Department of Health on establishing effective systems for the initial assessment and referral of individuals presenting with mental health conditions in primary health care settings. Read more...

National Authentication Service for Health (NASH) - SHA-1 to SHA-2 transition
NASH SHA-2 certificates are available on the Healthcare Provider Online Services to request and download. All healthcare provider organisations must transition to NASH SHA-2 by 31 December 2022 to meet Australian Government cyber security requirements. If your organisation is still using a NASH SHA-1 certificate and is ready to upgrade to SHA-2, information can be found here or contact the Primary Care Support Team on

Provider Connect Australia
Provider Connect Australia (PCA) is a service operated by the Australian Digital Health Agency. It connects healthcare provider organisations with their business partners to streamline updates of the services they provide and the practitioners that provide them. Read more...

Japanese Encephalitis Virus Vaccines
As part of the national response to the Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV) outbreak, SA Health is offering free Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV) vaccines to eligible people. Read more...

Japanese Encephalitis Virus Resources
Various websites containing resources, frequently asked questions and campaign materials related to Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV). Read more...

Monkeypox resources, including ATAGI clinical guidance
A series of Monkeypox resources including ATAGI clinical guidance on vaccination and treatment guidelines, are now available. Read more...

Voluntary Assisted dying in Aged Care: New fact sheets
Laws that legalise voluntary assisted dying (VAD) have been passed in all States except the Northern Territory. However, there are differences between the States as well as the obligations for different health professionals and institutions. The ELDAC End of Life Law Toolkit provides factsheets and other resources to assist health professionals in navigating VAD and end-of-life law. Read more...

Safer Baby Bundle Stillbirth Prevention Campaign
Wellbeing SA is supporting promotion of the Australian Safer Baby Bundle via a new campaign to help increase awareness of the practices that can reduce stillbirth and keep a baby safe during pregnancy. Read more...

Food security and Indigenous mental health 
Food security is a fundamental human right recognised in international law. This report looks at the extent of food insecurity affecting Indigenous Australians, its effect on mental health and well-being, and what is being done to address it. Read more...

Job Postings

Mount Compass Medical Centre GP position
Part time General Practitioner 4-6 sessions, located in Mount Compass, a small country town, our Medical Centre is expanding and progressive. We have recently moved into brand-new purpose-built premises. Read more...

headspace Murray Bridge - Seeking expressions of interest from GPs to work with headspace
Are you a GP with skills and interest in working with young people 12-25 years and want to be part of a dynamic, passionate headspace team? Read more...

headspace Murray Bridge - Experienced Mental Health Clinician Position
Do you have a passion for working with young people and their families to improve their mental health? Read more...

Professional Development

For more professional development opportunities go to

Face to Face

Contraception Workshop for Nurses and Midwives - Woodville
Wednesday 8 February 2023
Register Here

Let’s Talk About Sexual Health: Youth Focus - Woodville
Tuesday 14 February to Wednesday 15 February 2023
Register Here

A weekend getaway with a difference: Prehospital trauma care for rural clinicians - Hahndorf
Friday 28 April - Sunday 30 April 2023 Register Here

Webinars / e-Learning

Paediatrics Education Series: Autism
Tuesday 14 January 2023, 6.30pm - 8.00pm
Register Here

Paediatrics Education Series: Cough and Wheeze in Children & Adolescents
Tuesday 17 January 2023, 6.30pm - 8.00pm
Register Here

Mental Health Webinar Series: Women's Mental Health
Wednesday 25 January 2023, 6.30pm - 8.00pm
Register Here

Palliative Care ECHO Program
Commencing 22 February 2023
Register Here

Mental Health Webinar Series: Men's Mental Health
Wednesday 23 February 2023, 6.30pm - 8.00pm
Register Here

Supporting telehealth services in residential aged care facilities: The case for My Health Record
Monday 24 April 2023, 2.00pm - 2.30pm
Register Here

Supporting telehealth services in residential aged care facilities: The case for My Health Record
Tuesday 2 May 2023, 11.00am - 11.30am
Register Here

Your Opinion Matters

National survey on short-stay joint replacement programs
Monash University is seeking health professionals who provide care to patients undergoing hip or knee replacement surgery in Australia to take part in a study examining your views on short-stay joint replacement programs (also called ‘fast track’ or ‘enhanced recovery’ programs). Taking part involves completing a short anonymous online survey. For more information, please click here

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