Welcome to Victoria - A healthy checklist
Coming to live in Victoria? Smart move. You’re joining millions of others who have decided this is the place to be! Our population is growing by 1.7 per cent per annum which only goes to show that Melbourne and Geelong, in particular, are dynamic and prosperous places to call home.
While moving to a new house can be a daunting prospect, relocating from another country or interstate certainly adds a layer of complexity, especially if you’re leaving a trusted general practitioner or medical specialists.
Dr Ron Sultana, Director of Emergency Medicine, Epworth HealthCare has some tips to ensure your move is as smooth as possible, from a health perspective.
It is also reassuring, he says, to be prepared for the unexpected.
Victoria’s largest population centres of Melbourne and Geelong are home to Epworth’s two large, fully-equipped emergency departments.
Richmond is home to Epworth’s largest inner-city hospital and an hour away to the south-west is Epworth’s newest hospital, Epworth Geelong in Waurn Ponds.
Unless you’ve chosen to opt-out, every Australian is soon to have a personal, electronic health file known as My Health Record. Having a My Health Record will allow new treatment teams to check your health history wherever you present for a planned or emergency medical consultation.
Other tips for a smooth and healthy move:
Redirect your mail, so reminders from health services reach you
Provide your new address to existing health providers and let them know you’re moving. Don’t forget your dentist and maternal and child health services.
Join Ambulance Victoria
Update your health insurance details
Obtain pet medical records from the vet (well let’s face it - they are part of the family)
Things to remember on the road:
Check your mirrors: there are lots of cyclists and bike lanes in Melbourne
Familiarise yourself with hook turns (they’re only scary the first time!)
Learn about trams and what the road rules are with them, like when to stop and when you can overtake
Finally, have you heard of thunderstorm asthma? In 2016, Melburnians experienced a rare and frightening event when ten people died following a mass asthma event. During the evening of November 21, more than 8,500 people sought help from hospitals and medical centres. 1,900 people made emergency calls in just five hours, overwhelming emergency services.
Dr Sultana recommends new residents download the free Emergency Victoria app from iTunes, Google Play or visit the Emergency Victoria website, so we are all aware when there is a risk of thunderstorm asthma. Even if you have never had asthma, we are all potentially at risk of an epidemic thunderstorm asthma event from October through to the end of December.
“And, of course, regardless of weather events, if you know you live with asthma, ensure that your hay fever and asthma are well controlled, and you have an asthma action plan in place.”
When feeling unwell, it can be difficult to determine the appropriate measures for your recovery. You will likely have many questions - do I need to stay home from work? Should I visit a GP? Do I need to go to the emergency department?
Recipes brought to you by the Epworth team. Seafood paella, easiest to cook on the BBQ to ensure you get that all important crust.
Margaret McKelvie started volunteering at Epworth HealthCare after the death of her husband in April last year.
For Margaret, it was an opportunity to give back to the hospital and staff that had cared for her husband until his final days.
Swaddling has been done for centuries to help settle a newborn baby. It feels more familiar to them – they’ve been tucked up in your womb until now and lots of space can feel foreign
Parkinson’s disease affects 100,000 Australians, second only to dementia when it comes to neurological disease cases. Chances are you or someone you know will be affected by the disease, so it’s important to stay informed and be aware of the relevant forms of help available.