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"The road to medical knowledge is through the pathological museum and not through an apothecary's shop."
William Withey Gull


Hospital safety & quality assurance in Victoria

The report commissioned by the Minister for Health: Targeting zero: the review of hospital safety and quality assurance in Victoria, found that the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has failed to provide adequate oversight of quality and safety across Victorian health services. The DHHS has accepted in principle all the recommendations made in the review, and in response has prepared a blueprint outlining its planned reforms to achieve the goal of zero avoidable harm in Victorian hospitals.

Targeting zero: supporting the Victorian hospital system to eleminate avoidable harm and strengthen quality of care: report of the review of hospital safety and quality assurance in Victoria 2016


Dementia: urgent action required

In Australia from 2006 to 2015, the number of deaths due to dementia doubled, while deaths from stroke and cardiovascular disease decreased. With Australia's rapidly ageing population, dementia is a National Health Priority Area and is likely to become the disease that will claim the most lives by 2021. According to dementia research from the UK, "further studies are needed to understand how family carers of people with dementia can be best supported and how resilience may contribute to the health of adults".

Source: MJA InSight 2016; 39, 10 October

Further reading:
Clinical practice guidelines for dementia in Australia
Source: Medical Journal of Australia 2016; 204 (5): 191-193

Investigating what works to support family carers of people with dementia: a rapid realist review
Source: Journal of Public Health 2016; online first: 27 September


End-stage kidney disease

The incidence of end-stage kidney disease (ESKD) is an important indicator of the health of the Australian population and valuable for health-care planning. ESKD is the most severe form of chronic kidney disease and kidney replacement therapy - dialysis or transplant - is required for the survival of those affected. This Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) report estimates the total number of new cases of ESKD in Australia from 1997-2013, and indicates that for every new case treated with dialysis or transplant there is one that is not.

Source: AIHW 2016

Further reading:
The Austin Library subscribes to The Transplant Library which contains a wealth of information regarding Kidney transplantation, including all randomised controlled trials and high quality systematic reviews.


Preventing patient falls

Despite extensive attention being given to fall prevention programs, hospitalised patients continue to experience falls with injury. There are numerous contributing factors for patient falls and these can be grouped into: fall risk assessment issues; handoff communication issues; toileting issues; call light issues; education and organisational culture issues; and medication issues. Research shows that the keys to successful implementation of a falls reduction program involve the adequate measure and analysis of contributing factors within each organisation, and addressing organisational cultural change to enhance ownership of a 'zero falls' target. This US report outlines the risks that lead to patient falls, the root causes for those risks, and the solutions designed to reduce them.

Source: Health Research & Educational Trust 2016

Further reading:
Australian Commission on Safety & Quality in Health Care latest falls prevention research and practice.


Perinatal deaths in Australia 1993-2012

Although giving birth in Australia is recognised as being very safe, almost 1% of pregnancies from 20 weeks gestation onwards end with the death of a baby. A new report from University of New South Wales' National Perinatal Epidemiology and Statistics Unit (NPESU) and AIHW shows that during 2011 and 2012, 6,065 babies were stillborn or died within the first four weeks of life. "The findings of the report help us better understand the timing and causes of perinatal deaths, so that we can learn more about how they might be prevented"- Associate Professor Chambers (report author).

Source: AIHW 2016

Further reading:
Maternal mortality trends in Australia
The rate of maternal mortality in Australia is low and continuing to decrease. However, "advanced maternal age, maternal obesity and caesarean deliveries, are all associated with an increase in the risk of maternal death, and any future growth in their incidence will threaten the efforts to further reduce the maternal mortality rate".
Source: Medical Journal of Australia 2016; 205(8): 344-346



Fiscal policies for diet – WHO report

An average can of sugary drink contains the equivalent to 10 teaspoons of table sugar. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), the worldwide prevalence of obesity more than doubled between 1980 and 2014. In a WHO report launched on World Obesity Day, expert findings show that taxing sugary drinks can lower consumption and reduce obesity, type 2 diabetes and tooth decay. "Fiscal policies that lead to an at least 20% increase in the retail price of sugary drinks would result in proportional reductions in consumption of such products."

Source: World Health Organisation 2016


Did you know?

Austin Health has an institutional fellowship for BMJ Case Reports. This entitles Austin authors to the following:

    • Austin Health can submit an unlimited number of cases for publication
    • Access to 6000+ peer-reviewed case reports across all specialties. These can be searched by specialty, type of case, patient demographics or publication date
    • Reuse any of the published material for teaching and personal use without requiring further permission

    For further details and to obtain the 'fellowship code' to publish a case report, please contact the Library on 9496 5393 or


    Austin Health Research Online - recent submissions

    Maintaining weight loss: an ongoing challenge
    Sumithran P, Proietto J. Current Obesity Reports 2016; online first: 3 October

    Spontaneous renal calyceal and ureteric rupture secondary to intravenous contrast during computed tomography intravenous pyelogram
    Nzenza TC, Hennessey DB, Dunshea T, et al. BMJ Case Reports 2016; online first: 28 September

    MRI-negative temporal lobe epilepsy: a network disorder of neocortical connectivity

    Vaughan DN, Rayner G, Tailby C, et al. Neurology 2016; online first: 30 September

    Targeting the vasculature: anti-angiogenic agents for malignant mesothelioma

    Chia PL, Russell PA, Scott AM, et al. Expert Review of Anticancer Therapy 2016; online first: 4 October
    Full text available for Austin & MHW Heidelberg staff via document delivery

    Introduction of renal key performance indicators associated with increased update of peritoneal dialysis in a publicly funded health service
    Toussaint ND, McMahon LP, Dowling G, et al. Peritoneal Dialysis International 2016; online first: 28 September

    See more at AHRO, Austin Health Research Online


    eBooks spotlight

    Pathophysiology of blood disorders / edited by Jon C. Aster, H. Franklin Bunn - 2nd ed. - McGraw Hill Education, 2017.
    Introduction to the physiological principles underlying the regulation and function of blood cells and haemostasis.

    Callen's ultrasonography in obstetrics and gynecology / edited by Mary E Norton, Leslie Scoutt and Vickie A. Feldstein - 6th ed. - Elsevier, 2017.
    Completely updated to reflect new advances, it addresses the shift in today's practice to a collaborative effort among many professions with an emphasis on genetics and clinical management.

    New books on display

    Atmosphere of hope : searching for solutions to the climate crisis / Tim Flannery - Text Publishing Melbourne, 2016.
    Describes climate change in simple terms and provides an analysis of new possibilities for mitigating the effects of rising emissions.

    Cancer nursing : principles and practice / edited by Connie H Yarbro, Debra Wujcik, Barbara H Gobel - 8th ed. - Jones & Bartlett Learning, 2018.
    Guide for new oncology nurses learning to translate the complexity of malignant cell biology into simple messages for patients and families.

    Marshall & Ruedy's on call : principles and protocols / Australian and New Zealand adaptation by Anthony FT Brown, Mike Cadogan, Antonio Celenza - Elsevier, 2017.
    Latest guidelines providing a practical, and effective bedside approach to problem-solving on the ward.


    Journals spotlight

    Looking for the latest journal issues?
    These links provide access to the current table of contents:

    Alzheimer's & Dementia: Diagnosis, Assessment & Disease Monitoring

    American Journal of Kidney Diseases

    Archives of Medical Research

    Best Practice & Research: Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism

    CIN: Computers, Informatics, Nursing

    Disability and Rehabilitation

    Journal of Perinatology


    The New England Journal of Medicine


    All our journal titles with electronic access are available via the Journal List
    (outside the Austin Health network use your Library barcode no. & PIN for access)

    If you require an article from a journal that is not in the Journal List, please use our online document delivery form.


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    Sign up now & start using BrowZine - all you need is the free app and a Library card! 


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    The Austin Health Sciences Library accepts no liability for the information or advice provided by external links. Links are provided on the basis that readers make their own decisions about the accuracy, currency and reliability of the information contained therein. Any opinions expressed are not necessarily those of Austin Health.