Table 1. Australian National Immunization Program (NIP) Schedule The primary aim of this study was to describe the compliance with current Australian guidelines for vaccination of children and adolescents diagnosed with IBD current at the time of the study [ 19 ]. A secondary aim was to review the serological screening for VPD in patients with IBD. Methods A multi-faceted retrospective review of immunization status was undertaken, with the inclusion criteria being age 0-18 years at diagnosis and on the IBD register. There were a total of nine gastroenterologists working across the two tertiary units [RCH and MMC] at the time of the study. Hospital records of all participants were audited, with any vaccinations administered recorded in the outpatient notes and/or a medication chart if administered at the RCH Immunization Drop-in-centre. A telephone interview survey was conducted with consenting parents using the parent-held child immunization record. The vaccination history was checked against the primary care physician and ACIR records. The routine primary childhood vaccinations and administration of the recommended additional influenza and pneumococcal vaccines was clarified. Therapies were categorized into four groups: ASA derivatives (sulphasalazine, osalazine, mesalazine and balsalazide); oral corticosteroids (prednisolone); immunosuppressive agents (azathioprine, methotrexate) and biologics (infliximab). The RCH patient’s hospital laboratory results were reviewed to identify if any baseline serological testing was performed to review the requirement for additional protection against VPD such as varicella and hepatitis B.
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Specialist numbers jump 11%
The numbers are affected by changes made in the way the AIHW categorises specialities. But even between 2011 and 2012 the growth in specialists was twice the growth in FTE GPs. Back in 2011, Jim McGinty, the chair of Health Workforce Australia, warned that specialisation had “gone too far”, claiming it was being driven by forces within the medical profession itself. He added that the capacity of GPs, generalists and support workers was not “being sufficiently valued or managed”. The AIHW report shows two-thirds of doctors were trained in Australia. It also reveals the small numbers of women in certain specialties, including in gastroenterology and hepatology. Only 18% of gastroenterologists and hepatologists are female, the report reveals, compared with 26% of specialist physicians overall. There were 612 gastroenterologists and hepatologists practising in Australia in 2012, the report said. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare: Medical report 2012 . Record numbers of doctors are working in Australia, but the growth of specialists still appears to be outstripping the growth in GPs. Between 2008 and 2012 the number of full-time equivalent (FTE) doctors per 100,000 people increased by 9% from 344 to 374. But the workforce report , released by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) on Friday, suggests that despite increases in GP numbers, the numbers of specialist doctors is rising faster. The headline figure shows FTE specialists per 100,000 of the population rose by 11% over the four-year time period more than four times the growth in GPs which rose by only 2.5%.