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12 Jun 2018

New AMA President Dr Tony Bartone has wasted no time since being elected to lead the Association for the next two years; holding a string of media interviews, policy discussions, and political meetings to ensure the voice of the nation’s peak medical group is clearly heard.

Dr Bartone was elected President on the final day of the AMA National Conference, held at Canberra in May.

He replaces Dr Michael Gannon, whose two-year term expired with the conclusion of the National Conference.

Dr Bartone has promised to fight for GPs, represent all medical professionals, and build the AMA’s membership and influence.

He also signalled an intention not to go easy on politicians and policy makers.

One of his first meetings was with Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt, who congratulated Dr Bartone on his election.

“Our Health Minister needs to understand the time for rhetoric is over. We need to see real action now,” Dr Bartone told conference delegates.

“We will have a Federal Election in the next year, and I am ready for any early election call.”

The President also met with Shadow Health Minister Catherine King, as well as other MPs and political offices.

His media diary has remained full from day one.

“General practice has been systematically starved of funding, putting at risk its very survival,” he said.

“The AMA, under my leadership, has the solutions. A GP President will send a message.”

Dr Chris Zappala, a thoracic physician from Queensland, was elected Vice President to replace Dr Bartone.

The AMA has also already released policy statements and endorsements under the new leadership regime.

CHRIS JOHNSON


Published: 12 Jun 2018