AMA National Conference calls on pharmacists to stop prescribing

Australian Medical Association/AusMed

The AMA has passed an urgent motion that the Federal Council and Federal President call for an immediate end to the trial of prescribing of antibiotics, paediatric vaccinations and oral contraceptives by community pharmacists in Queensland and nationally. The motion, put forward by Dr Bavahuna Manoharan, also calls for the Queensland Health Minister to adhere to national processes as occurring under the direction of the Council of Australian Governments.

Following contributions from the floor, all in favour of the motion, that went to issues of privacy, evidence-based medicine, incorrect prescribing, and Pharmacy Guild tactics, it was passed without dissent.


Another urgency motion passed at the AMA National Conference has recommend the AMA become a signatory to the Colombo Declaration 2017, which condemns attacks on healthcare facilities and workers – and their patients – around the globe.

Moved by Dr Sarah Whitelaw, the motion expresses concern about the rise of serious attacks on medical centres and facilities in war zones and other trouble spots in various parts of the world.

The Colombo Declaration calls in the United Nations Security Council to take immediate action against such attacks.

The Declaration also reaffirms: “Our belief that all people regardless of gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity, political affiliation, or religious beliefs should have the right to access health care, and all medical professionals should be able to deliver this care in facilities without threat of attack.”


Delegates at the AMA National Conference have also voted to push for all GP registrars to be employed under single employer contracts.

After considerable debate, the motion was emphatically passed to urge the Government to adopt a single employer model.

The motion reads: That our AMA recommends the Government develop a single employer model as an alternative to fee for service arrangements to deliver equitable remuneration and employment conditions for GP registrars, and between GP registrars, while at the same time meeting the needs of supervising practices. It was put forward by Dr Danielle McMullen.

Other motions passed at the National Conference include:

That our AMA advocates for all employees to have access to a minimum of 10 days of paid domestic violence leave. Moved by Dr Jill Tomlinson.


That the AMA support NHMRC guidelines that clinicians should advise women who are pregnant or planning a pregnancy that the safest option is to avoid alcohol entirely, based on the information that prenatal alcohol exposure may harm the unborn child and that no safe level ha been established for alcohol consumption in pregnancy. Move by Professor Elizabeth Elliott.


That the AMA calls on the National Health and Medical Research Council to introduce a rural research funding scheme for health and medical research. Moved by Dr Shehnarz Salindra


That our AMA promotes awareness of the risks of non-fatal strangulation among medical professionals and includes mention of the risks of non-fatal strangulation in the next iteration of the AMA Policy on Family and Domestic Violence. Moved by Dr Jill Tomlinson


That the AMA lobbies the Federal Government to increase funding for general practice, so that it represents at least 16 per cent of total health spending, and that this figure be mandated. Moved by Dr Richard Kidd.


Credentialed pharmacists in rural and remote areas. That the AMA advocates for the removal of the limit of 20 Medication Management Reviews per month credentialled pharmacists are able to perform in Modified Monash Model 4-7 to improve patient care and reduce adverse medication events. Moved by Dr Dilip Dhupelia.


That the AMA calls on the Commonwealth and State/Territory Governments to adopt a central repository for credentialing to store all relevant documents, as well as providing a scope of clinical practice library. Moved by Dr Sandra Hirowatari.

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