Spinal Life Australia is looking to offer information to assist regional and rural GPs in supporting patients with spinal cord injury or damage.
The organisation will present at the upcoming Rural Doctors Association of Queensland (RDAQ) Conference, discussing the complications associated with living with a spinal cord injury and the importance of knowing where to go to seek advice when needed.
Chief Executive Officer Michael Powell said it was often more difficult to access medical resources in regional areas compared to metropolitan, especially with the only specialist Spinal Injuries Unit in Queensland located in Brisbane.
“Medical issues can go far beyond the initial spinal cord injury – complications such as pressure sores, hypertension, wound care, incontinence, pain management and even mental health issues can all arise as a result of spinal damage,” Mr Powell said.
“When people leave the Spinal Injuries Unit and return to their communities, the people returning to rural areas generally have less access to important specialist treatment and advice.”
Mr Powell said the organisation would speak with regional doctors during the RDAQ Conference about spinal cord injury and the late effects of polio.
“We have a many years’ lived experience and expertise in supporting people who have a spinal cord injury and there is an opportunity to use that experience to support regional doctors if they ever need information,” he said.
“We also work with our members who are experiencing the late effects of polio, a relatively unknown condition that affects polio survivors decades after they first contracted the virus.
“We have been working to boost awareness so people experiencing the late effects of polio can receive appropriate advice and treatment from doctors and health professionals.”
The 2018 RDAQ Conference will be held from 7 to 9 June at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre.
Spinal Life Australia has invited Dr Claire Panagoda from the Queensland Spinal Cord Injuries Service to share her knowledge on spinal cord injuries as part of the presentation.
For more information on the conference, visit http://conference.rdaq.com.au