Decision Maker

Dr Michael Gannon

  • President of the Australian Medical Association

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Petitioning Malcolm Turnbull, Bill Shorten, Dr Michael Gannon, Greg Hunt MP

May 1st Changes to Pap Smears

  As of May 1st the following changes will be implemented to women's Pap Smears: "-women will be invited when they are due to participate via the National Cancer Screening Register-the time between tests will change from two to five years-the age at which screening starts will increase from 18 years to 25 years-women aged 70 to 74 years will be invited to have an exit test. The new program will commence from 1 May 2017 when the new Cervical Screening Test will become available on the Medicare Benefits Schedule. Until this time, women aged between 18 and 69 years who have ever been sexually active, should continue to have Pap test when due." The government run website states that: "Based on new evidence and better technology, the National Cervical Screening Program will change from 1 May 2017 to improve early detection and save more lives." Prior to May 1 the website advises: "It is very important that women continue to participate in the current two yearly Pap test program to ensure they are not at risk of developing cervical cancer. Pap tests have already halved the incidence and mortality from cervical cancer since the introduction of the National Cervical Screening Program in 1991. Women will be due for the first Cervical Screening Test two years after their last Pap test."   "The new Cervical Screening Test detects human papillomavirus (HPV) infection, which is the first step in developing cervical cancer. The procedure for collecting the sample for HPV testing is the same as the procedure for having a Pap smear. A Health Care Professional will still take a small sample of cells from the woman’s cervix. The sample will be sent to a pathology laboratory for examination. While the current Pap test can detect abnormal cell changes, the new Cervical Screening Test will detect the HPV infection that can cause the abnormal cell changes, prior to the development of cancer. Persistent HPV infections can cause abnormal cell changes that may lead to cervical cancer. However, this usually takes a long time, often more than 10 years."   Some of the reasoning behind the changes are: " -cervical cancer in young women is rare (in both HPV vaccinated and unvaccinated women)-despite screening women younger than 25 years of age for over 20 years there has been no change to the rates of cervical cancer or rates of death from cervical cancer in this age group-investigating and treating common cervical abnormalities in young women that would usually resolve by themselves can increase the risk of pregnancy complications later in life-the HPV vaccination has already been shown to reduce cervical abnormalities among women younger than 25 years of age and, in contrast to screening, is ultimately expected to reduce cervical cancer in this age group." Please see petition updates and responses. Dr Michael Gannon has responded to the petition.    

Isabella Rossi
71,645 supporters
Petitioning Greg Hunt MP, Hon Michael Ferguson, Hon Jill Hennessy, Hon Brad Hazzard, Hon Meegan Fitzharris, Hon Roger Cook, Hon Peter Malinauskas, Hon Natasha Fyles, Dr Michael Gannon, Steven Miles

Stand for change Army Against Stillbirth

Every day in Australia 6 babies are dying. We do not see it, these deaths are hidden, these deaths are silent – these babies are stillborn. Stillbirth is not inevitable, rather it can often be prevented. Yet rates have not changed in 20 years. Stillbirth is 14 times more common than SIDS. Stillbirth is double the amount of national road toll. Stillbirth is the number one cause of death among infants in Australia. This is not ok – we want change. The Army Against Stillbirth is community standing united against stillbirth. A monthly silent vigil, a peaceful protest for change. The 6th of September 2017 marks the start of this silent protest Australia wide. The Australian Medical Association need to take action and make change. The government need to step in. Obstetricians, clinicians and antenatal carers need to step up. Stillbirth is the number 1 cause of death among infants in Australia and yet we shy away from talking about it. That is not ok. 6 babies every day, 42 babies every week, 182 babies every month, 2200 babies every year! It’s time to stand up for what’s right. These babies cannot speak for themselves so Still Aware are leading a silent vigil in their honour. A silent protest towards change. Everyone is invited to join the Army Against Stillbirth and proudly stand together and sign this petition for these babies, in hopes that this visual can help guide the change further. ____________ When Claire went to hospital after nine months of waiting, it was excitement and anticipation she felt at the thought of meeting her new baby girl. She had everything ready, the nursery was set up, tiny baby clothes ironed, soft toys carefully placed on the shelves, baby bath and massage oils, even the car seat was installed ready to bring her daughter home. The world came crashing down for the entire family with three little words “there’s no heartbeat”. Incomprehensible. Impossible. Nothing prepared her for what was next. She laboured for 24 hours, utter agony but no physical pain, she birthed her perfect little girl in deafening silence. Her daughter Alfie was stillborn. With no illness or abnormality, she was born, but without breath. The moments, hours, days and weeks that followed were filled with isolation and utter agony of what ifs. Why had no one told her stillbirth was a possibility? Had they, Alfie would be here. Claire knew her little girl so well and instinctively knew something didn’t feel right. Yet she wasn't given the tools to keep her baby safe. She didn’t know that 5 words, “my baby’s movements have changed” could have prevented those 3 painful words forever echoing in her mind, “there’s no heartbeat”. Was it a lack of communication that killed her baby? Don’t we deserve better? ________________ We are asking for: 1. Mandated policy2. Coronial Jurisdiction3. Access to information for all Please sign this petition and join the force driving change and raising awareness of stillbirth and preventable measures. Your signature can help save babies lives - 50% of stillbirths are preventable. Together, we can create change!

Still Aware
1,778 supporters
Petitioning CNN, Frito-Lay, PepsiCo, Ron Wyden, Oregon State Senate, sedgwick workers compensation, Earl Blumenauer, FOX News, Donald Trump, Dr Michael Gannon, Oregon Governor, Michelle Obama

Frito-Lay Knee replacement and life restoration

My Husband Gary Alexander who worked for Frito lay suffered a torn meniscus in 2010, he had corrective surgery and was able to return to both work and being a happy husband and father. In 2014 it was torn again, This time unfortunately it failed.  I have watched my life drastically change before my eyes. He used to be proud to work for such a great company. He enjoyed his career he had with them, he looked forward every day to being a part of such a great team. Then little by little he changed. With the denial of FritoLays workers compensation insurance denying treatment he desperately wanted. He walks continuously with a limp, lives in unimaginable pain every single day. Because of this he started not being able to do his job and was given a light duty position. Gary being the man he is and loving the company started to slowly decline, he started being unable to attend soccer games, school dances, still he tracked on. Many more denials for a second surgery or even a second opinion started and continues to take its toll on the father of six and grandfather to two,but most of all my best friend. Gary slowly started not being able to do the things that brought him great joy as a man, a son and a father. He would often talk about times that his Grandfather, Uncle and Father took him hunting,fishing and camping as a boy often excited  our young sons who are the ages where they want to suck all of his knowledge of those things right out. Our boys were at the time 7and 14 and lived to follow Gary and listen to the stories he had to share about guiding in Alaska and often complaining of how thier four sisters smelled like nail polish and makeup. Our daughters were 15,16,17 and 20 they lived to hear thier dads shouts at basketball, volleyball marching band and track meets. Because of the extent of his injury Gary has had to make tough decisions like "will the boys and I go fishing or will I go to our daughters game"? Knowing that it would take every bit of energy he would have because he was unable to sleep most nights and was limited in the amount of things he could do in a day so to not aggravate his knee. I lived for the time when I saw my husband smile, laugh and enjoy his new life we had created being a mixed family. Two of the children were his from a previous marriage and four were mine. We married in April of 2011 and the adoption of my children made us a complete family. We were so happy, he had a wonderful job, I was a full time nursing student and the best of all we were a family. Now we have two Grandchildren two and almost a year old. Gary is limited at this point to maybe and hour or two a day of activity that does not involve a significant rest because of his knee. Because of the injury he is no longer working for Frito-Lay and was sent to vocational rehabilitation to learn a new trade. Although hard our family adjusted well. Till the  nights he would only get two or three hours of sleep a nite. In June of 2016 our granddaughters second birthday to be exact he and our now 15 year old son went to pick out a birthday present for her, it was then our lives changed even further. Because of the exhaustion and every treatment being denied by Sedgwick Gary had a grand mal seizure while driving with our son in the car. They hit a parked simi at over 100mph and moved it back 6feet. Our son (thank God )was okay,Gary was transported to our local hospital where they said that he would be life flighted to Portland Oregon to one of our states major hospitals for a bleed in his brain. While he was there it was decided that Gary had a cavornoma ( a benign tumor) in his brain that had now caused him to have epilepsy. The exhaustion caused it to come to fruition and would have to start a seizure medication. But I was grateful that they both lived!! We could handle everything else as long as they were okay. Gary continued to go to school all the time with a bad knee and another difficulty to life. He could no longer drive, hunt, fish or shower alone ever again. In January of 2017 a year we thought for sure that his knee would be fixed and he would finally be able to sleep!! we could deal with the little things. He was told he was too young for a replacement because they only last 25 years then the cushion would need replaced and only last another 25. January 29th 2017 Gary had his second Grand Mal seizure this time falling 30ft to the ground on his head. He spent 32 days in the icu as I desperately pleaded with God to shave years off my life in order to spare his. The lack of sleep, the unwillingness of Sedgwick to treat him at all sent him into full blown exhaustion again and had also been the cause of this seizure. Again now with none of his ribs left unbroken his spine from T12 to S1 being completely broken we pick up the pieces. Now Gary is even more limited in what he can do and how much time he can do it in. All I want is for my  best friend to be happy to be able to be the father and grand father that he is and has been back. My children and I desperately miss him. We miss fishing,camping,hunting.I miss date nights going to the movies or on a late nite summer drive to look at the stars. I know that they can replace the meniscus    and if they absolutely will not replace his knee. Please, please I am begging you with my entire heart and soul to fix him. All it's going to take is a final exhaustion at the wrong time and we will loose him.  My children and Grand children are begging you that while they are still young and impressionable with Gary being only 43 to help us. We loved Frito-Lay and Gary was a devoted employee and would have stayed with them till retirement had this not happened, but the workers comp insurance has been a nightmare and we need your help. Thank you for your time and we hope you sign our petition.                          The Alexander Family 

Ms Anderson
319 supporters
May 1st Changes to Pap Smears

Dear Isabella and petition signers, My name is Doctor Michael Gannon. I’m the President of the Australian Medical Association, and a WA gynaecologist. I wanted to respond to your petition regarding the changes to pap smear testing to come into effect May 1, 2017. Myself and the AMA welcome the Federal Government’s changes to the HPV and cervical cancer screen testing. The changes adopt evidence based guidelines developed by senior gynaecologists across the country. I am confident the changes to the pap smear testing, and increasing the age of suggested testing to 25 years old, will not put young women at greater risk of contracting cervical cancer. While pap smears detect abnormal cell changes, the new test detects human papillomavirus (HPV) infection, the cause of almost all cervical cancer cases. The rare cases of cervical cancer that won't be detected by this test weren't detected by pap smears either. What is rarely mentioned is that the new testing will lead to tens of thousands of women avoiding the anxiety of an abnormal pap smear. It will lead to thousands of younger women avoiding (sometimes unnecessary) surgery to their cervix, so that they can then have safer pregnancies. What the changes don’t do is diminish the need to keep advocating for pap smears. I want to be clear that any woman, regardless of age, presenting to a doctor for a pap smear will never be turned away, and that it is always essential for women under 25 years of age experiencing abnormal bleeding to present to a doctor.

12 months ago