FHL e-news September 2014

FHL e-news September 2014

FHL e-news September 2014

In this Edition


Welcome from the Chairs

Welcome to our September 2014 e-newsletter. A special thanks to all of you who have signed up since our last newsletter. Welcome to Future Health Leaders!

It's been a couple of months now since Future Health Leaders was officially incorporated as an independent organisation. This being our first newsletter since incorporation, on behalf of the FHL council and chairs past and present we we like to acknowledge Health Workforce Australia and the Commonwealth Government for the vision of what is now Future Health Leaders Inc.

We are fast heading towards the end of 2014, which means that half of the FHL National Council finishes its term and a new cohort of energetic health leaders will join the rest of the council in taking the organisation forward into the future. Nominations for a new half of council have opened and will be open until Friday 3rd October 2014. Read further down for information on the positions up for nomination and other dates and details.

Partnership and collaboration have always been an important focus of FHL, and in this realm we are happy to announce that we are partnering with AMSA to adapt their on-line mental health short course to be used by a health professionals across disciplines. We are looking for people with experience in this area to contribute to the adaptation of the course in various ways. Please get in touch with us if you are able to volunteer your expertise for this project. This project along with FHL 2050 continues to be the core work of the organisation for the rest of 2014.  While we are on the point about partnership we are happy to announce a collaborative forum with General Practice SA in Adelaide in October. More details below.

In this newsletter, you will also find an update on our two most recent forums, an update from NSWLHD FHLAG's latest meeting, information on support available for rural and remote work and to finish off a profile of Carina, one of our council members. Revealed in the newsletter is also an announcement of our Future Health Leaders Conference in 2015!

We hope you enjoy the articles. You can continue to keep in touch with us through our social media platforms and website and also email us anytime on hello@futurehealthleaders.org.au.

Until next time​,

Dan and Emmanuel
Co-Chairs, Future Health Leaders

Melbourne Forum inspires emerging professionals

On the 28th of June, the FHL Inspiring Ideas Forum was held at the University of Melbourne. Delegates, both students and early career professionals, from over ten different health disciplines came together with the aim of equipping themselves to innovate in health.

Delegates were welcomed to Country by Wurundjeri Elder Bill Nicholson. The first session was 'Engage", which aimed to highlight innovative programs and encourage delegates to get involved. Professor Stephen Smith, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences, provided the welcome address from the University of Melbourne, which was the host sponsor for the Forum. Professor Smith urged delegates to think outside of the box and inspire others with disruptive ideas, suggesting “incrementalism is boring”.

Professor Stephen Smith, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences

REACH (Realising Education and Access in Collaborative Health), who partnered with Future Health Leaders to bring the Forum to life, shared their story of innovation with delegates. Natalie Yap, Joyce Shi and Pavithra Amadoruge, who presented on behalf of REACH, spoke about the REACH Clinic, Australia’s first student-run, interprofessional clinic.

The Engage session closed with the keynote address from Dr Linny Phuong, founder of the Water Well Project. In sharing the Water Well story, Dr Phuong shared her own story and highlighted how important it is to surround yourself with an enthusiastic team and develop strong partnerships in order to be successful.

Dr Linny Phuong, Founder of the Water Well Project

During the lunch break, delegates visited the Ideas Booth to get their picture snapped with their innovative idea.

A forum delegate and Jessica Lees, Future Health Leaders Physiotherapy Council Member, share their ideas at the Ideas Booth

The Challenge session was all about challenging delegates to consider issues from a new perspective and encouraging them to re-frame the issue. The keynote address was delivered by Professor Kerry Arabena, Chair of Indigenous Health at the School of Population and Global Health at the University of Melbourne. Professor Kerry Arabena embodied the Challenge theme in her address; presenting a unique perspective of health being situated in a complex ecosystem, where change will be achieved through coming together as a collective mind. Delegates then heard from Dr Alessandro Demaio, co-founder of NCDFREE, via video address. Dr Demaio challenged delegates to take issues from the ivory towers of academia out into the public domain and have conversations.

A forum delegate and Jessica Lees, Future Health Leaders Physiotherapy Council Member, share their ideas at the Ideas Booth

The Forum closed with the Innovate session, which aimed to present new and different ways of approaching health issues and to inspire innovation. The keynote address was delivered by Dr Sam Prince, founder of One Disease at a Time. Dr Prince shared his experience in creating diverse businesses and health initiatives. He suggested to delegates that they live their dreams, and that amazing things will follow.

Dr Sam Prince, Founder of One Disease at a Time

We asked the delegates what they thought the best thing about the Inspiring Ideas Forum was. Here’s what they had to say…

“All speakers posed practical questions – I like how this was incorporated into breakout sessions”

“Hearing from inspirational speakers and working with people from diverse backgrounds”

“Networking and meeting people”

“The group work in the afternoon – I enjoyed being given the opportunity to learn from others”

“Hearing from such inspiring leaders and being challenged by them to be leaders and build innovative idea"

Throughout the day, delegates also took part in a series of activities around the themes of Engage, Challenge and Innovate to address the issues of the aged care workforce and of health literacy. At the end of the day, they shared their ideas in the Ideas Booth.After the close of the Forum, delegates took part in Celebrate, the forum social event. At Celebrate, the Celebrating Inspiring Ideas compendium was launched.  The compendium can be found on the Future Health Leaders website. Future Health Leaders was grateful to have Jo Sharkey, co-founder of Prickle Community Acupuncture, present at the event. Delegates had the chance to talk about the different speakers, share their experiences, and get to know other delegates.

Delegates with their idea to address the aged care workforce

After the close of the Forum, delegates took part in Celebrate, the forum social event. At Celebrate, the Celebrating Inspiring Ideas compendium was launched. Future Health Leaders was grateful to have Jo Sharkey, co-founder of Prickle Community Acupuncture, present at the event. Delegates had the chance to talk about the different speakers, share their experiences, and get to know other delegates.

The Inspiring Ideas Forum team at Celebrate. From left to right: Emmanuel Gnanamanickam (FHL), Jessica Lees (FHL), Cynthia Luk (REACH), Anna O’Halloran (FHL), Sarah Carter (FHL), Alison Hiong (REACH). Also part of the Inspiring Ideas team were Oneil Bhalala (REACH), Matthew Kilpin (REACH), and Winnie Sim (REACH).

Moving Forward Together: Leadership and Partnership

Future Health Leaders believe that working alongside and building the leadership skills of Indigenous health professionals is integral for addressing the health disparities that exist today. Our Indigenous Health Forum held in Canberra, Moving Forward Together:  Leadership and Partnership, showcased some strong Indigenous health leaders and future leaders who provided an insight into their lives and achievements and inspired participants to consider working in their area of healthcare.

Thank you to Aunty Agnes Shea who performed the Welcome to Country and shared some of her stories about growing up in Canberra and the surrounds. Following this, Danielle Dries, an engaging medical student and physiotherapist talked about her personal journey and the challenges she has overcome throughout her studies. We were challenged to think about a reversal in the healthcare system; where Indigenous health professionals outnumbered non-Indigenous health professionals. What would be the cultural implications and challenges of this?

We were also sad to hear Danni had experienced racism and that this is still an issue today. She explained that every time someone says something that is not culturally appropriate, not only is it important to highlight that this is not ok but also to offer an explanation. A lot of this racism exists due to naivety and therefore the explanation is important. Being challenged to think from other perspectives and question what we think we know was a great way to showcase what leaders do- they challenge and engage us to think in different ways.

Bruno Aloisi provided an insight into the mental health services that are run in partnership with ACT Health and Winnunga Nimmityjah Aboriginal Health Service. Similarly, Julie Tongs OAM, outlined the range of health services that Winnunga delivers to the Indigenous peoples of Canberra. It was fantastic to listen to the incredible transformation Winnunga has undertaken over the 25 years it has been in operation; from offering a small GP clinical service to the thriving service it is today with a range of health care professionals servicing the community. Some of the services that are now provided are a comprehensive diabetes education and management program, mental health services, allied health services and a drug and alcohol program. Julie Tongs is a well-known Indigenous health leader and wears many different hats. She assured all participants of the Forum that they can make a difference to Indigenous health if they are committed and willing to listen to the community.

Finally, we were very fortunate to be joined by Indigenous Allied Health Australia’s Donna Murray and Larry Brandy. Donna presented a leadership workshop, which really got us thinking about our values, leadership styles and what our leadership goals were. It was a privilege to participate in this workshop and learn more about ourselves and how we can further develop our leadership skills.

To finish the day, Craig Dukes, Director of the Ngunnawal Centre at the University of Canberra, facilitated a group discussion session focusing on what we had learnt throughout the day and the key action points for Future Health Leaders to work towards.

Racism: This is still a big issue in Australia. On an individual level we have the power to say “no” to racism. At an organisational level, Future Health Leaders can partner with programs such as STAR (Stand Together Against Racism) to take a stance against racism within our communities.

Phrasing questions about Aboriginality: Some people are hesitant to ask about an individual’s heritage, fearing that they may cause offense. Why we ask these questions and how we use the information from the answers was discussed. Future Health Leaders will work with its stakeholders to provide more information about this to its members through videos and links to relevant websites.

Aboriginal Health Workers versus Aboriginal Liaison Officers: There was confusion about the role of these professionals and scenarios were discussed to highlight which professional was appropriate for different situations. Again, Future Health Leaders can add information on this to their website.

Positive stories: There are many unpublished positive stories that people have shared about the benefits of working in Indigenous health. Positive stories inspire others and could even encourage more Indigenous people to take up careers in health. When appropriate, Future Health Leaders should promote working in Indigenous Health.

Cultural Competency: Future Health Leaders should encourage everyone to complete a cultural competency course to gain a deeper understanding of Indigenous culture, beliefs and practice.


Do you want to be a part of a dynamic, innovative organisation? Are you passionate about health issues in Australia and abroad?  Well becoming a Future Health Leaders Council Member may be right up your alley!

We are looking for leaders from all walks of life to become a part of our team, so if you have the passion and commitment to improve the health of people in Australia as well as our surrounding neighbours then get clicking and be sure to nominate yourself for a position on our Council.

For 2014, we are looking for super talented folk from the following disciplines:

  • Audiology
  • Chinese Medicine
  • Dentistry and Oral Health
  • Exercise Physiology
  • General Member (See Policies and Procedure Manual for definition)
  • International Representative (See Policies and Procedure Manual for definition)
  • Medicine
  • Midwifery
  • Occupational Theraphy
  • Orthoptics
  • Orthotics and Prosthetics
  • Radiation Science and Sonography
  • Social Work
  • Speech Pathology

We're sure you're wondering what this involves, so we have included the fine print for you to peruse.  Be sure to check it out to make sure you have the time to commit to this exciting group and apply !! 

FHL and GPSA Forum

We are pleased to announce our partnership with General Practice SA, to bring to our members (especially those in South Australia) an evening to discuss where health and health care needs to be headed in the future. On 23rd of October GPSA will run a seminar as part of their Skill-set series that will bring together Professor Kerry Arabena from the Melbourne School of Population and Global health and FHL Co-chair Emmanuel. While Prof Arabena will discuss the holistic approach of planetary health, Emmanuel will draw on the experience of FHL to provide an insight into the value of collaboration. Registration is now open and special FHL member rates are available.

The flyer provides more information on the event and more information on GPSA's seminar series can be found here.

Save the date - FHL Conference 2015

We are excited to announce the dates for our National Conference in 2015 - For a sneak peak into what you can expect see the video of our last conference below !!

The FHLAG is still flying strong

Future Health Leaders Council member and Social Work representative Alice Munro updates us on the latest activity of the Future Health Leaders Advisory Group (FHLAG) for the Western NSW Local Health District.

A local group of committed early career health professionals met in western NSW last month to continue to drive change from the ground up. The Western NSW Local Health District Future Health Leaders Advisory Group, or FHLAG, met with Scott McLachlan (CEO of WNSW LHD) in the remote town of Bourke, some 800km north west of Sydney. The formation of this group has been a direct outcome from the FHL National Rural Health Leadership Forum, held in Orange, NSW, in September 2013.

Ongoing agenda items discussed included social media, promoting work and lifestyle in rural areas and investing in technology to improve effectiveness of health care in the bush. Illustrating the impact of working together to achieve shared rural goals, WNSW LHD teamed up with Far West Medicare Local for an once in a lifetime rural health networking event - a cruise on the mighty Darling river’s historic ‘Jandra’ paddlesteamer with dinner and drinks where we were fortunate to be in the company of some very esteemed rural GPs, practice managers and CEOs. A few of us were even able to brush up on our Henry Lawson poems! Definitely made for a unique and memorable occasion!

The following day, we were fortunate to be invited to participate in a Far West Medicare Local interactive workshop focusing on a model for integrated health service delivery, which places primary health care and innovative leadership at the front and centre. We then did a quick pit stop for fascinators, hats, heels and ties and headed out to the iconic Louth Races, where we our love of life and work in rural areas got the better of us amongst the dust and winter sunshine! Here a few of us were fortunate to meet Honourable Kevin Humphries (pictured below). It was a chilly -1 degrees swagging the night of the races before we all packed up and headed back home to Dubbo, Bourke and Orange and ready for another busy working week! A sincere thank you to Far West Medicare Local CEO, Stuart Gordon, and Western NSW LHD CEO, Scott McLachlan for hosting this sensational event, and for also continuing to support and mentor the future rural health workforce in NSW.

Resources for Rural Health

Do you work in or are about to start work in a rural or remote area?

Are you looking for resources on mentoring or want to find out more?

Here are some useful links and resources to help you along your journey !!

Get to know your council - Carina Trinh

This edition we catch up with Carina Trinh, FHL Optometry Representative, vision crusader and soon to be mountain climber.

Nine to five: Optometrist at theeyecarecompany in Top Ryde. An independent optometric practice that prides itself in patient education, contact lens specialty, myopia control, and dry eye treatment. I am the resident optometrist and spend my days educating and treating patients from all walks of life, whether they are 3 year old toddlers that require specs necessary for development, office workers with high visual demands on computer devices, diabetics with potentially blinding eye disease, or the elderly!

Passionate about: Empowering individuals, and therefore communities to enrich their lives with better health outcomes. I believe this will stem from an inspired and empowered health work force.

What pumps me up: Watching opportunities become actions, and eventuating into results. Knowing that people want to better the world. Believing that our projects will truly contribute to society. The ability to help others, and make a difference to their life.

Future Health Leaders to me is... an opportunity to engage across different spheres of society, starting with early career health professionals; who have daily interactions with the general population, working synergistically and connecting us to those in governmental roles to then truly effect change on a larger scale.