LAST week, NPS MedicineWise, in association with the learned medical colleges and special societies, launched Choosing Wisely Australia.
The Australian launch follows the successful Choosing Wisely program run in the US by the American Board of Internal Medicine Foundation. In that program, more than 80 colleges and specialist societies each contributed five evidenced-based guidelines in their area of expertise of things that doctors should not do.
In Australia, there has been great support from the medical community to establish the program here, including from the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP), which is essential, as its members will be the major recipients of this advice.
There has also been support and input from the Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia, the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Radiologists, the Australasian College for Emergency Medicine, and the Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology, all of which have already developed lists.
The Royal Australasian College of Physicians is fully supportive of this project, and has established the EVOLVE initiative, which is working in partnership with its associated special societies and divisions to develop peer-led guidelines.
NPS MedicineWise is also liaising with other interested colleges, including the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons, which will be an essential part of Choosing Wisely Australia.
Consumer information will be developed so patients can discuss these issues with their doctor. It is hoped this will reduce the number of patients asking for unnecessary tests and procedures, without impacting on the patient–doctor relationship.
Choosing Wisely Australia is being launched at the same time as the federal government has launched a review into the MBS. While Choosing Wisely Australia is focused solely on quality, if it does lead to cost savings this would be welcomed as we recognise the need to also ensure funding is spent wisely.
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Stewardship toolkit for clinical educators
The Health Resource Stewardship for Clinical educators contains educational material about the Choosing Wisely initiative for use in universities, hospitals and health professional colleges
5 questions to ask your doctor or other healthcare provider to make sure you end up with the right amount of care.