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30 May 2019

AMA National Conference Brisbane 2019 was a huge success.

Almost 200 delegates, plus guests, observers and media converged on Brisbane’s Sofitel Hotel for three days from May 24 to appraise the past 12 months and make plans for the year ahead.

Seven AMA Past Presidents were in attendance, along with distinguished guests from overseas.

These included the President of the American Medical Association (the other AMA) Dr Barbara McAneny, who presented an inspiring address at the Leadership Development Dinner; President of the World Medical Association Professor Leonid Eidelman, who spoke warmly of Australia’s active role in global health; Thai Medical Association President Professor Ronnachai Kongsakon; Indian Medical Association President Dr Santanu Sen and its Honorary Secretary General Dr Rajakani Vivekanandan Asokan; and New Zealand Medical Association President Dr Kate Baddock and CEO Ms Lesley Clark.

“It is always exciting to host our friends from medical associations around the world,” AMA President Dr Tony Bartone said when welcoming them.

“There are so many good stories about how our profession and associations operate globally. And so many of the issues and challenges that we face are shared.”

Greg Hunt – who at the time of the conference had been re-elected as part of a re-elected Coalition Federal Government, but not yet reappointed as Health Minister (that came shortly after) – sent the conference a video message that promised continued cooperation with the AMA on improving the nation’s health system.

He announced a 10-year plan to focus on primary health care. And he stressed the importance of re-thinking the approach to preventive health.

“I would like to strike a partnership with the AMA … and others to drive forward a national preventive health strategy to achieve change in the way in which we approach health care,” Mr Hunt said.

Dr Bartone told conference delegates that: “We have a lot of important work to finish with presumed Health Minister Greg Hunt.”

The three-day conference covered issues as diverse as artificial intelligence, gender equity, aged care, mental health, doctors’ health, doctor supply and medical schools, leadership, politics, and much more.

Numerous motions were debated from the conference floor. Members were honoured, awards were presented, and much fun was had.


Some of the events and proceedings of National Conference are covered in the June 3 edition of Australian Medicine, with more to follow in the next edition – a bumper print edition – published mid-June.

Conference stories will also be progressively published on the Australian Medicine web page and more social photo galleries will appear in upcoming pdf and online editions.


Published: 30 May 2019