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AMA salutes pathologists on Pathology Day

28 May 2013

The AMA acknowledges and supports the important work and dedication of all Australian pathologists on Pathology Day.

Pathology Day is coordinated by the Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia (RCPA).

AMA President, Dr Steve Hambleton, said today that diagnostic services are a vital element of best practice patient care.

"Diagnostic services provide crucial information to enable medical practitioners to assess and diagnose a patient’s condition, and to determine the best approach for treatment," Dr Hambleton said.

"Accurate diagnosis facilitates cost-effective treatment and significantly improves patient outcomes.

"Once a treatment plan is initiated, many medical conditions require follow-up pathology services to determine when treatment is effective and side-effects are avoided or detected - for example, positive outcomes from cancer treatment.

"Pathology is integral to cost-effective treatment as well as to ongoing patient management.

"Properly-funded diagnostic services are critical to the delivery of timely, clinically appropriate health care for Australians."

Pathologists are medical specialists who supervise scientists and technical staff in pathology laboratories. They ensure quality and accuracy and provide a pivotal role in guiding clinical care and best outcomes for patients. Interpretation of tests by pathologists is an integral part of any pathology service.

Pathologists also maintain long-standing relationships with treating doctors to ensure that high quality medical care, informed by expert medical opinion, is provided to patients.

Pathologists and treating doctors regularly confer on the appropriate test, and can personalise interpretation of results of tests requested by the treating doctor. This interaction ensures optimal patient care and facilitates quality pathology requests.

Dr Hambleton said that pathologists must be supported to continue the important work they do for the community.

28 May 2013

CONTACT:         John Flannery                       02 6270 5477 / 0419 494 761

Image by goannarun1 on Flickr, used under Creative Commons licence

Published: 28 May 2013