New Bill for community workers’ rights

THE NSW Government has unveiled a draft bill to extend leave rights for up to 250,000 community sector workers, allowing quicker access to long service leave and portability across multiple employers. Targeting disability care, domestic violence, and homelessness services, the reform aims to address job insecurity and retain essential workers. The scheme, mirroring other jurisdictions, responds to the sector’s high casualization and predominantly female workforce, aligning with the Government’s commitment to support social service workers.

Surgery waitlist drops 85%

SINCE March 2023, NSW’s planned surgery waitlist has dropped by 85%, thanks to the Surgical Care Governance Taskforce and dedicated health staff. Over 12,000 fewer people await overdue procedures, with 83.6% of surgeries performed on time. Measures like expanding same-day surgery eligibility and boosting healthcare workforce help alleviate pressure on hospitals. Premier Chris Minns commends progress but acknowledges ongoing efforts to ensure prompt healthcare delivery.

Half admit emotional baggage

NEW research by eharmony highlights the impact of past relationships on future love lives. Almost half of respondents admit to carrying emotional baggage, with anger issues and addiction cited as the most troublesome. Despite this, many aim to learn from past mistakes to improve future relationships. However, there’s a paradox: while individuals acknowledge their own baggage, they may judge potential partners harshly for theirs, revealing complexities in navigating emotional baggage in relationships.

Mathematics won’t be mandated
THE Independent Education Union of Australia applauds NSW Education Standards Authority’s decision not to mandate mathematics for Years 11 and 12 students. With teacher shortages at peak levels, the move is considered pragmatic. Compulsory math would exacerbate the deficit in STEM educators, reducing subject choices and hindering student enrolment in non-government schools. The IEU advocates for enhanced professional development for primary teachers to bolster mathematics education.

Experts recommend using mouthguards

AS the 2024 rugby and football seasons approach, parents and athletes are urged to prioritize oral health. Shockingly, only 36% of Australians wear mouthguards during contact sports, increasing the risk of severe injuries like fractured teeth and broken jaws. Dr Cathryn Madden emphasizes the importance of custom-fitted mouthguards from dentists to ensure proper protection, comfort, and prevention of injuries. Bupa Health Insurance members can access no-gap mouthguards at participating clinics, promoting safer sports participation.

Pharmacy trial proves successful

THE NSW Government’s pharmacy trial has exceeded 12,000 consultations, easing GP burden and enhancing medication access. Trained pharmacists manage UTIs and provide oral contraceptives, with over 11,000 UTI consultations and 854 pill consultations since May and September 2023, respectively. The trial expands to include treatments for minor skin conditions. Minister Ryan Park emphasizes the initiative’s efficiency and safety, aiming for further expansion to improve healthcare accessibility.

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