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3 May 2019

New AMA(SA) president wants health changes to focus on people: patients and those who care for them


Incoming Australian Medical Association (SA) President Dr Chris Moy says that after years of low morale and dysfunction resulting from changes imposed on the state’s health system, there must be a return to a simple focus on people.


‘The focus and intent of our health system and its services must be the health and wellbeing of our patients and the doctors and nurses who care for them,’ Dr Moy said.


Dr Moy was elected as president at the association’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) last night. He assumes the position after a term as Vice President under the outgoing president, Associate Professor William Tam.


Dr Tam will officially congratulate Dr Moy at the AMA(SA) Gala Dinner on Saturday, 11 May.


Dr Moy is a Parkside-based GP who, in his willingness to become a ‘public face’ of the AMA and its membership in South Australia and nationally, has become a recognised advocate for patients’ rights and healthcare system improvement.


He has had long-standing and extensive involvement in aged care, end-of-life decision making, palliative care, digital health and health system design, at state and national levels.


Dr Moy is a member of the AMA’s Federal Council and its Medical Practice Committee, and has chaired its Ethics and Medico-legal Committee since 2016.


The incoming vice-president, Dr Michelle Atchison, is a private psychiatrist who works with patients suffering the effects of trauma, including the impacts of war service. Dr Atchison is a foundation member of the Royal Australian & New Zealand College of Psychiatrists’ (RANZCP) Faculty of Forensic Psychiatry and Adult Psychiatry, and helped establish South Australia’s Medical Panels for the resolution of medical disputes in work-related injuries.


She is the past Chair of the RANZCP’s SA Branch and represents South Australia at the Federal level at the RANZCP in registrar training and advocacy roles.


Dr Moy said his own and Dr Atchison’s different but always patient-focused interests demonstrated the diverse breadth and depth of understanding of the health system within the AMA(SA) Council and membership.


‘In this state and across the country, the AMA is an advocacy body with enormous influence that must be used to help governments develop the best healthcare system and services possible,’ Dr Moy said.


‘I have had the privilege over many years in being able to help influence the health system so it is better for patients. Now, in this role, I hope to use my experience to support our members, and in particular our next generation of doctors, to take up the mantle and develop the skills they will need to stand up for the interests of their patients now and in the future.’