COVID-19 has asked a lot of us. We have had to take quick and decisive action in several key areas of the business. We have placed several projects on hold and refined our operations to prioritise safety above all else. Throughout this process of moment to moment decision-making, we have learnt a lot as a practice, and stood tall as responsible and safety-aware citizens of our medical neighbourhood.
In this update, I’ll be sharing the three things that I believe have kept us going and growing, and some thoughts around our future direction as a practice.
1. A Cohesive Team
We have discovered how closely our success as a business is linked to our cohesiveness and psychology as a team. In a world dominated by uncertainty, we have had to find new ways to offer safety, hope and inspiration to our patients and to each other. We have had candid conversations about our individual vulnerabilities, and have consistently brought our full and authentic selves to work. This openness and humanity that exists within our workplace has meant that we have all had moments of deep connection with each other and by extension, this has enhanced our capacity to connect deeply with our patients.
2. A Focus on Kindness
Gurleen and I have had conversations with our team, our patients and our community regarding what you are doing to take care of yourselves during this challenging time. It has been reassuring to see a common thread emerging of the “one thing” you do to stay grounded (your “anchor”). Overwhelmingly, you have taught us what it means to be kind to your self and to others.
In this spirit, we have adopted our own self-care habits. Personally, I took up the challenge to run 100km in the month of July, and used my morning run as my consistent daily ritual. Having dedicated the last few years to lifting weights and quick bursts of cardiovascular exercise, running was quite foreign to me, and the prospect of running 3 to 5km each day almost insurmountable. However, by taking on and successfully completing the challenge with a day to spare, I taught my mind that even the toughest mental barriers can be overcome. I have continued this healthy habit and now channel this energy into showing up in the right way each day for my team, my patients, my community and my family.
By modelling healthful behaviours within and outside of the workplace, we can all work together to build a culture where self-care and self-compassion are valued, encouraged and commonplace. We are well placed to facilitate the extension of this culture into the lives of our patients, so that they see us not only as trusted advisors, but as health role models. Indeed, it is difficult for us to counsel our patients about behaviours that we ourselves do not practice.
3. A Clear and Compelling Vision
In a world seemingly dominated by fear and uncertainty, it is not uncommon for feelings of helplessness and hopelessness to surface. Finding clarity amidst chaos is extraordinarily challenging, particularly when coupled with the grim reality that others have lost so, so much to, or through, this pandemic.
Why are we here? Why do we get up in the morning? What drives us? These are the questions that we have needed to ask constantly throughout the last few months. The antidote to burnout is a compelling vision of the future, and we would like that future to be the embodiment of our core values, our dreams and our aspirations. At its foundation, breathing life into our vision must enable us to positively and proactively impact the lives of the people we exist to serve.
Are our core values, compassion and innovation, still relevant today? I believe they are, and will explore this in a subsequent article.
Where to next?
During our first year at Rosedale, Gurleen and I invested heavily in the domain of engaged leadership. Our team, patients and community have come forward to welcome us with open arms as the new leaders of the practice.
We are proud to have built upon our credibility and brand as a business, and have established a strong online presence and digital footprint. COVID-19 has accelerated our uptake of health technology, and we are now well placed to deliver care virtually. We started our journey wanting to do away with the fax and with paper, and COVID-19 taught us that even bricks and mortar are optional. We still believe that the heart of general practice is in relationship-based, in-person care. However the unique opportunity to take care to our patients has renewed our commitment to providing “Care Outside the Box”.
In line with our vision, we have built our reputation as a world-class provider of health care, as a great place to work for our team, and as a quality training practice for our medical students from Macquarie University, Western Sydney University and University of Sydney.
We have also implemented key population health programs. We have partnered with Western Sydney Diabetes to offer Diabetes Case Conferences to our patients, and have grown our practice’s relationship with our Primary Health Networks – WentWest and Sydney North Health Network. We are in discussions with our local partners about our involvement in new and innovative programs such as HeartConnect, and expect to add even greater value to the services we are able to offer our patient population.
Importantly, our participation in these projects is grounded in our principled approach. We stand for a higher purpose – with everything we do, we aim to improve the lives of our patients, our team and our community. We lean into compassion and innovation as both our core values and our key strategic levers. However, if we are to continue to grow as a business, we need to have a clear picture of what success in these two areas look like, and define some key metrics around this.
We recognise “that the fox knows many things, but the hedgehog knows one big thing”. We stand by our desire to be the best in the world when it comes to innovation and compassion. As we gain further clarity and understanding of our shared purpose, we accept that our focus may evolve or transform. We also recognise the key area in which we are consistently outperformed by our competitors – convenience.
During the pandemic, we have been particularly conscious of our limited resources, and have leaned into our strategy of doing the best that we can for our current patients, ensuring their care is managed proactively, holistically and comprehensively. Our data so far has suggested that we have excelled in key areas such as the delivery of influenza vaccines to our most vulnerable patients.
It is very easy to brush the idea of convenience aside, and I have found myself a few times saying that we are not a “convenience” practice. However, on the flip side of convenience is access. And it is absolutely a problem when our patients are unable to access their healthcare team, particularly at a time that health care is in such great need. So increasingly we do recognise this as a problem that we need to address.
We recognise that in our efforts to provide comprehensive and personalised care to our patients we often run late. This is also unacceptable and disrespectful to our patients who we understand live very busy lives. We would like to say that we respect your time. More than this, we would like to show you that we respect your time and we would like to take very deliberate action to ensure that this is an area in which we can improved.
But we can’t improve what we don’t measure, and so during the month of August, we will be focusing our attention on “building block two” – data-driven improvement. We will set out a number of key metrics and use data to drive insights and further improvements in the way we manage our business and care for our patients. We look forward to sharing these insights with you, our valued community, in our next update.
Throw back to 1985 – a scene remembered by many as one of the most heartbreaking in Australian television history – Molly Jones of A Country Practice (played by Anne Tenney) would die of leukaemia, while lying on a couch in the garden watching Brendan play with their daughter Chloe.
35 years on, we reflect on the heritage of the beautiful home we now call Rosedale Medical Practice West Pennant Hills. We reflect on the values of #kindness, #love, #humanity, #friendship, #life, #resilience, that continue to live on to this day. There is something truly magical about serving our fellow humans from the house that Molly once called her home.
“Mad”, we said, “Mad Molly Jones”
But then we didn’t know
The kindness that was hers to spare
The joy that she took everywhere
We simply didn’t know.
“Mad”, we said, “Mad Molly Jones”
But then we hadn’t heard
How she could fight to save a flower,
And give each man and dog his hour
We simply hadn’t heard.
“Mad”, we said, “Mad Molly Jones”
But then we hadn’t seen
That she could make a dull day bright,
That she was colour, warmth, and light
We simply hadn’t seen.
Molly Jones, it’s over
Yet we cannot say goodbye
For all the loveliness we knew
And love of life and friendship true
And laughter brave once dwelt in you
And how can such things die?
Rosedale Medical Practice West Pennant Hills welcomes all new and existing patients. You can book an appointment today by calling (02) 9680 9644, or alternatively using our convenient HotDoc app.￼
Click here to book via HotDoc.
Cortisol is a hormone that helps the body respond to stress, such as exercise, by breaking down fats and carbohydrates for energy. Cortisol levels naturally rise during cardio exercise, but they usually return to normal after the workout is over. This is not a bad thing, as cortisol helps the body adapt to the physical demands of exercise and improve fitness.
However, if cortisol levels are chronically elevated due to other factors, such as lack of sleep, emotional stress, overtraining, or poor nutrition, then this can have negative effects on the body. Some of these effects include increased appetite and fat storage, especially around the abdomen, reduced muscle mass and strength, impaired immune system and increased risk of infections, disrupted sleep-wake cycle and mood swings, and lowered bone density and increased risk of osteoporosis.
Therefore, it is important to balance cardio exercise with other types of training, such as strength training, flexibility training, and recovery activities. It is also essential to manage stress levels, get enough sleep, eat a balanced diet, and stay hydrated. These strategies can help keep cortisol levels in a healthy range and optimise the benefits of exercise.
Here are five ways to combat chronically elevated cortisol levels:
- Balance cardio exercise with other types of training. Cardiovascular exercise is good for your heart health, endurance, and calorie burning, but it can also increase cortisol levels if done excessively or at high intensity. To prevent this, you should mix up your cardio routine with other forms of exercise that can lower cortisol levels, such as strength training, flexibility training, and recovery activities. Strength training can help build muscle mass and strength, which can counteract the effects of cortisol on muscle breakdown. Flexibility training can help improve blood flow and reduce muscle tension, which can lower cortisol levels. Recovery activities can help restore the body’s energy balance and reduce inflammation, which can also lower cortisol levels. Some examples of recovery activities are stretching, foam rolling, massage, meditation, or yoga.
- Manage stress levels. Stress is one of the main causes of chronically elevated cortisol levels. Stress can come from various sources, such as work, family, relationships, finances, or health issues. To cope with stress effectively, you should practice relaxation techniques that can calm your mind and body. Some examples of relaxation techniques are meditation, breathing exercises, yoga, or massage. These techniques can help lower your heart rate, blood pressure, and cortisol levels. They can also improve your mood and mental clarity. You should also try to avoid or minimize sources of stress that are unnecessary or harmful. For example, you can delegate tasks that are overwhelming or outsource tasks that are not your expertise. You can also limit your exposure to negative news or social media that can trigger anxiety or anger.
- Get enough sleep. Sleep is vital for your health and well-being. It is during sleep that your body repairs itself and restores its energy balance. Sleep also regulates your hormones, including cortisol. When you sleep well, your cortisol levels follow a natural rhythm that peaks in the morning and declines throughout the day. When you don’t sleep well or enough, your cortisol levels become disrupted and stay elevated throughout the day. This can impair your metabolism, immunity, mood, and cognitive function. To get enough sleep, you should follow a regular sleep schedule that allows you to get at least seven to nine hours of quality sleep every night. You should also avoid caffeine and alcohol before bed, as they can interfere with your sleep quality and increase your cortisol levels. You should also create a comfortable and dark sleeping environment that is free from noise and distractions.
- Eat a balanced diet. What you eat can affect your cortisol levels as well as your overall health. Eating a balanced diet that includes complex carbohydrates, lean protein, healthy fats, and plenty of fruits and vegetables can help keep your cortisol levels in check. Complex carbohydrates can provide a steady source of energy for your body and brain without spiking your blood sugar or insulin levels. Lean protein can help build and repair your muscles and tissues without adding excess fat or calories. Healthy fats can help regulate your hormones and inflammation without clogging your arteries or increasing your cholesterol levels. Fruits and vegetables can provide antioxidants and phytochemicals that can protect your cells from oxidative stress and damage caused by cortisol. You should also avoid processed foods, added sugars, and excess salt that can increase your blood pressure, inflammation, and cortisol levels.
- Stay hydrated. Water is essential for every function in your body, including hormone regulation. Dehydration can cause stress on your body and increase your cortisol levels. Drinking water throughout the day and before,
during, and after exercise can help prevent dehydration and keep your cortisol levels in balance. Water can also help flush out toxins and waste products
that can accumulate in your body due to high cortisol levels. You should aim to drink at least eight glasses of water per day, or more if you sweat a lot or live in a hot climate. You should avoid sugary drinks, such as soda, juice, or sports drinks, that can spike your blood sugar
and cortisol levels. You should also limit your intake of alcohol, as it can dehydrate you and increase your cortisol levels.
- Book an appointment with your GP or dietitian. The advice above is general and may not suit everyone. The best way to build habits and a lifestyle that is tailored to your needs is to book in with your general practice team. Your GPs, dietitian and practice pharmacist at Rosedale Medical Practice are here to help. Book an appointment using HotDoc, or by calling our friendly reception team on 02 9680 9644.
Get protected against the flu today!
The 2023 flu season is here and getting vaccinated is one of the most important steps you can take to protect yourself and those around you. At Rosedale Medical Practice, we’re now offering the 2023 influenza vaccine for patients of all ages.
Why get vaccinated?
Influenza can be a serious illness, especially for young children, older adults, pregnant women, and people with chronic medical conditions. By getting vaccinated, you not only protect yourself but also those around you who may be more vulnerable to the virus. The flu vaccine is safe, effective, and has been proven to reduce the severity of symptoms and lower the risk of complications.
Free vaccine for eligible patients
Under the National Immunisation Program (NIP), the following groups are eligible for a free influenza vaccine:
- All children aged 6 months to less than 5 years
- All Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 6 months and over
- All individuals aged 65 years and over
- Pregnant women (at any stage of pregnancy)
- Individuals aged 6 months and over with certain medical conditions that increase the risk of severe influenza, such as chronic respiratory or cardiac disease, immunosuppression, and diabetes.
For patients not eligible for the free vaccine, the private cost of the vaccine will be $25
COVID-19 vaccine booster doses also available
We’re also offering COVID-19 vaccine booster doses for eligible patients who have not had COVID-19 infection or COVID-19 vaccination in the last 6 months. Co-administration of the COVID-19 and influenza vaccines is possible, although it may come with a slightly higher risk of side effects such as fever.
How to book your vaccine appointment
Booking your influenza/flu vaccination and COVID-19 vaccination appointment is easy. You can book online by clicking the “BOOK AN APPOINTMENT” button at the top of this page or by calling us on 02 9680 9644. We encourage all eligible patients to get vaccinated against both Influenza / Flu and COVID-19.
Protect yourself and those around you today by getting vaccinated against the flu!
Sleep is essential for good health and feeling our best. It’s not just about being rested and alert during the day. Getting enough sleep also helps our body work properly. One important thing to know is that gaining weight isn’t just about the number of calories we eat or burn through exercise. There are other things that can make us gain weight, and poor sleep is one of them.
Studies have found that people who don’t get enough sleep, usually less than seven hours per night, are more likely to gain weight. One reason is because poor sleep can mess up our hormones that tell us when we’re hungry or full. When we don’t get enough sleep, a hormone called ghrelin goes up, which makes us feel hungrier, and another hormone called leptin goes down, which makes us feel less full. So, we might end up eating more, even if we don’t need to.
Another way poor sleep can make us gain weight is by messing up our metabolism. When we don’t get enough sleep, our body can’t process sugar as well, which can lead to something called insulin resistance. Insulin is a hormone that helps our body use sugar for energy. But when we become insulin resistant, our body has trouble using sugar, and this can lead to weight gain and other health problems like type 2 diabetes.
Finally, when we’re tired, we might not feel like exercising, which can also cause us to gain weight. Exercise is important for keeping our body healthy and managing our weight. But when we’re tired, we might not feel like moving, and this can lead to weight gain.
To prevent weight gain, it’s important to get enough sleep every night. We can also make our sleep better by creating a good sleep environment, avoiding screens before bedtime, and having a regular sleep schedule. If we have trouble sleeping, it’s important to talk to a doctor about it. By getting enough sleep and taking care of our bodies, we can stay healthy and feel our best!
- Taheri, S., Lin, L., Austin, D., Young, T., & Mignot, E. (2004). Short sleep duration is associated with reduced leptin, elevated ghrelin, and increased body mass index. PLoS medicine, 1(3), e62. https://journals.plos.org/plosmedicine/article?id=10.1371/journal.pmed.0010062
- Spiegel, K., Leproult, R., Van Cauter, E. (1999). Impact of sleep debt on metabolic and endocrine function. The Lancet, 354(9188), 1435-1439. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0140673699044649
- Chaput, J. P., Després, J. P., Bouchard, C., & Tremblay, A. (2012). The association between sleep duration and weight gain in adults: a 6-year prospective study from the Quebec Family Study. Sleep, 35(10), 1293-1297. https://academic.oup.com/sleep/article/35/10/1293/2709365
- Knutson, K. L. (2007). Impact of sleep and sleep loss on glucose homeostasis and appetite regulation. Sleep Medicine Clinics, 2(2), 187-197. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1556407X07000145
- Van Cauter, E., Spiegel, K., Tasali, E., & Leproult, R. (2008). Metabolic consequences of sleep and sleep loss. Sleep Medicine, 9, S23-S28. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1389945708001182
Did you know that setting healthy boundaries is essential for your health and well-being? At Rosedale Medical Practice in West Pennant Hills, we understand the importance of taking care of yourself, both physically and mentally. That’s why we want to remind you of the benefits of setting boundaries and why it can be so challenging.
Many of us struggle with setting boundaries because we’re afraid of conflict or rejection. We may also be used to putting others’ needs before our own or feel guilty for saying “no.”
However, setting boundaries is essential for our overall well-being. It allows us to communicate our needs and expectations clearly, reduce stress, and improve the quality of our relationships.
As Brené Brown puts it, “Daring to set boundaries is about having the courage to love ourselves, even when we risk disappointing others.”
Here are a few examples of ways to set boundaries:
- Learn to say “no.” Saying “no” may be difficult, but it’s an important part of taking care of yourself.
- Identify your limits. Take the time to reflect on what you’re willing and not willing to tolerate in your relationships, both personal and professional.
- Communicate assertively. Assertiveness is an essential part of setting boundaries. When you’re assertive, you can communicate your needs and expectations in a clear and respectful way.
Remember, setting boundaries is not selfish, it’s necessary for your health and happiness. So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed or stressed, take a moment to reflect on your boundaries and whether they need to be adjusted.
At Rosedale Medical Practice, we understand the importance of setting healthy boundaries and are here to support you in your journey.
If you’re interested in speaking with a GP at Rosedale Medical Practice about setting healthy boundaries or any other healthcare concerns, you can easily book an appointment online by visiting our website at http://www.rosedalemedicalpractice.com.au.
Alternatively, you can call us during practice hours on 02 9680 9644 to book an appointment over the phone or to speak with one of our friendly reception staff. We’re open from Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm, and on Saturdays from 8am to 1pm.
We are delighted to welcome new patients to our practice. Whether you’re new to the area or just looking for a new GP, we’re here to provide you with the highest level of care and support.
#HealthyBoundaries #SelfCare #SelfRespect #Relationships #CommunicationSkills #RosedaleMedicalPractice #WestPennantHills #CareOutsidetheBox
Welcome to Rosedale Medical Practice in West Pennant Hills
We are delighted to welcome new patients to our practice. Our experienced and friendly team is dedicated to providing high-quality healthcare services to our community. We understand that visiting a new medical practice can be daunting, so we have created this page to help make your first visit as smooth as possible.
Before Your First Visit:
• Please arrive 10 minutes before your scheduled appointment to complete any necessary paperwork.
• Bring your Medicare card, any referral letters, and a list of current medications.
• Familiarise yourself with our location and parking options. We have ample onsite parking available.
During Your First Visit:
• You will be greeted by our friendly reception team, who will assist you with any queries and complete your registration.
• Our experienced doctors will conduct a thorough consultation and discuss your medical history and any current health concerns.
• Depending on your needs, our doctors may conduct a physical examination and order any necessary tests.
• We value the privacy and confidentiality of our patients and maintain a safe and comfortable environment.
After Your First Visit:
• Our doctors will provide you with any necessary referrals, prescriptions or follow-up appointments.
• We encourage our patients to book a regular check-up with our doctors to ensure the ongoing health of their wellbeing.
• We welcome any feedback or suggestions to help us improve our services.
At Rosedale Medical Practice, we are committed to providing our patients with high-quality healthcare services. We understand that visiting a new medical practice can be daunting, so we strive to create a warm and welcoming environment for our patients. We look forward to meeting you and providing you with exceptional healthcare services.
To book an appointment or for more information, please contact our friendly reception team.
Call us on 02 9680 9644, or book via HotDoc
Skin cancer is one of the most common types of cancer in Australia. It is important to have regular skin checks to identify any early signs of skin cancer and reduce the risk of it spreading. At Rosedale Medical Practice, our experienced doctors provide comprehensive skin checks to detect and treat skin cancer.
Our Skin Check Service:
• Our doctors use the latest technology and techniques to identify and diagnose skin cancer.
• Our skin checks are thorough and include a full body examination, checking for any suspicious spots, moles or lesions.
• If a suspicious spot is identified, our doctors may take a biopsy to test for skin cancer.
• Our doctors will discuss your skin check results with you and provide recommendations for ongoing care.
Who Should Get a Skin Check:
• People with fair skin and/or a history of sun exposure
• People with a family history of skin cancer
• Anyone with a new or changing mole or lesion
• People with a weakened immune system or other risk factors
How Often Should You Get a Skin Check:
• People with a history of skin cancer or a high risk of developing skin cancer should have regular skin checks every 3-6 months.
• For others, an annual skin check is recommended.
At Rosedale Medical Practice, we understand the importance of skin checks in detecting and treating skin cancer. We encourage our patients to book a skin check with one of our experienced doctors to ensure the ongoing health of their skin.
To book a skin check or for more information, please contact our friendly reception team on 02 9680 9644. Prefer to save time and book online? Use our convenient HotDoc appointment booking tool to book your Skin Check right now.
Welcome to Rosedale Medical Practice – a trusted medical practice in West Pennant Hills that is committed to training the next generation of healthcare professionals. We are proud to offer our patients the highest quality of care and access to talented GP Registrars.
What is a GP Registrar?
A GP Registrar is a fully qualified medical doctor who is undergoing further training to become a specialist GP. The training involves a minimum of three years of supervised clinical practice under the guidance of experienced GP supervisors.
At Rosedale Medical Practice, our GP Registrars are passionate about providing exceptional healthcare services to our patients. They bring fresh perspectives and the latest medical knowledge and practices to our team, which enhances the quality of care that we provide.
What are the benefits of seeing a GP Registrar?
There are several benefits of seeing a GP Registrar, including:
1. Access to the latest medical knowledge and practices: GP Registrars are continually updating their skills and knowledge to provide the best possible care to their patients.
2. Longer consultations: GP Registrars often have longer consultation times, allowing them to take a thorough and comprehensive approach to your healthcare needs.
3. Focus on preventative health: GP Registrars place a strong emphasis on preventative health, empowering patients to take a proactive approach to their health and wellbeing.
4. Access to a wider range of services: GP Registrars are trained in a broad range of medical specialties, allowing them to provide a wide range of services and treatments.
At Rosedale Medical Practice, we are proud to offer our patients the opportunity to see a GP Registrar. Our GP Registrars are highly trained, caring, and dedicated to providing the highest quality of care to our patients.
Please contact our friendly reception team to book an appointment with our current GP Registrar, Dr Jessica Chen, or for any questions or concerns about your healthcare needs. We look forward to seeing you at Rosedale Medical Practice!
Book now by calling us during practice hours on 02 9680 9644. Alternatively, you can use our online booking service, HotDoc, which is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
If you’re an expecting or new mum or dad who might be struggling, it’s okay to reach out for help.
1 in 5 new mums and 1 in 10 new dads will experience perinatal depression and anxiety.
Most parents will feel emotional or anxious in the first 2 weeks of having a baby. But if those feelings persist or feel overwhelming, it might be time to talk to a friend or a health professional.
At Rosedale Medical Practice in West Pennant Hills, all of our GPs are trained, willing and able to assist with your mental health. We can empower you with resources tailored to your situation, as well as connect you with our wonderful community of mental health professionals.
You can book online via HotDoc, with face to face, telephone and video consultations available, so that you can speak with us at a time and location most convenient and comfortable for you. Alternatively, speak to our warm and friendly reception team by calling 02 9680 9644 during practice hours.
Remember, we’re here to help.
For more information, resources and advice:
For those requiring more support:
- PANDA supports families struggling with perinatal anxiety or depression 1300 726 306
- If you need to talk to someone immediately, The Mental Health Line is available to everyone in NSW and operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call 1800 011 511
Information credit NSW Health
✅ On arrival, our wonderful, superstar admin staff greets you, checks your details, checks your temperature and directs you to your seat
✅ Each of our doctors takes the time to explain the vaccine to you, including information about the vaccine, and expected side effects, and signs to watch for
✅ We have a detailed conversation with you about the risk of thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome (TTS – a rare type of ‘blood clot’), the signs to watch for, and what to do if you develop these signs
✅ We observe you for 15 minutes (or 30 minutes if you have had a previous history of anaphylaxis, a severe allergic reaction) and are ready to respond with emergency medication if needed
✅ On Tuesdays we are joined by our amazing medical student from Macquarie University
Our systems and processes are carefully designed with your safety as our highest priority, to ensure that you receive the best possible experience.
Remember, our team is ready to serve you and your loved ones. We are doing just over 100 vaccines a day and have the capacity to do more – so if you know anyone that would like the Astra Zeneca vaccine, please send them our way so that we can help.
In the photo: Dr Jas Saini, Medical Student Gareth, and Admin Assistant Simran