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Your Family Doctor: Here for You
AMA South Australia celebrates GPs’ role for Family Doctor Week

AMA Family Doctor Week, 22-28 July 2018

General practitioners play a vital role in our health system, and each year the AMA celebrates that role with its national Family Doctor Week. This year, Family Doctor Week is being held from 22-28 July, with the theme ‘Your Family Doctor: Here for You’.

“Family Doctor Week is a great opportunity to stop and think about your health, the years ahead and what a trusted family doctor can do for you,” said AMA South Australia state president Associate Professor William Tam.

“Perhaps it is an opportunity to book a visit to see your GP and catch up on a health check, or get advice on a problem or concern that has been troubling you. Perhaps it is a time to find a regular GP if you do not have one: someone you can go to for those more difficult or complex problems, as well as the day-to-day.”

“Having a great GP who you trust is an investment in your future health and wellbeing. It means you have a place to go when you need help, where someone with expertise and an important referral network can help you with both the day-to-day things such as vaccinations and checkups, to the more tricky matters such as dealing with chronic disease, the aftermath of injury or sickness, mental health, and a range of situations that can come up as we grow older.”

“Having a great GP is important and helpful in good times, but it’s also an insurance policy when things go wrong. A regular GP and general practice is like your ‘medical home’ – a place where your records are, together with someone who knows you, and has a long-term investment in your health and future.”

“GPs are at the front lines of care in the community, and they also play a vital role in standing up for their patients – both in advocating for people to get the right help, and also to the system, as an alarm bell for when things are not working. When parts of the health system are not performing well, GPs may be the first to see the effects, and what it means to their communities.”

“GP visits are funded via Medicare and often general practice is seen as more of a federal government responsibility, but it is vital that the state health system understands what GPs do and engages with them in a meaningful way on state health matters.”

“That is an important message that the AMA(SA) has for the new state government and the SA Health system, under its new CEO. When people need to engage with the health system, they often rely on their GPs to help steer them. GPs are ideally placed to do just that, but they need to be kept informed, and heard.”

“GPs are health champions, so let’s make the most of the expertise they offer!”

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