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President’s Welcome to 2022

Magda welcoming members to 2022

Dear AFMW Members and Friends,

I hope you have all had an opportunity to rest and spend time with family and friends. We are already in full swing for the new year with a line up of Events and Open Forums planned. You will see that I have been active in the media already in an effort to provide health advice to the public through major media platforms.

My recent article in The Age / Sydney Morning Herald on Saturday 15 January, titled GP tips on how to manage COVID-19 at home  was the second most read article in the nation for the day and is still being circulated widely. It was preceded by a similar article in the Greek paper Neos Kosmos, both in English and in Greek. This was then reprinted as a double page lift out in the weekend edition just passed, for people to pull out and retain for further reference. I’ve been advocating for more GP support as you will see in my interview in The Guardian and in NewsGP as the  state of Victoria has declared a ‘code brown’.

Despite the spread of COVID  in the Eastern States and elsewhere in Australia and the world, the year ahead is looking exciting for AFMW.

Our Herstory this month features Dr Rosalind ‘Ros’ Terry, a long-standing member of Victorian Medical Women’s Society (VMWS). Through Ros, we learn that the path to medicine can sometimes be curly due to obstacles, but that loving medicine and believing in yourself brings  you to closer to your goals.

We will start the year with an Open Forum special COVID session on Thursday February 3rd 8pm AEDT, which I’ll be speaking at and we’ll be talking about COVID in general practice.

Our first AFMW Council meeting is scheduled for February 7th 8PM AEDT.

In March this year, AFMW will be hosting another parallel session at this year’s 66th UN Commission on the Status of Women.

Our event session is, Australian Women Doctors: Climate Change and Gender Equity Advocates and Activists. DATE & TIME: 20/03/2022 at 8:00 AM EST.   I hope many of you participate and regarding attendance, you will notice I selected a time that suits the northern hemisphere for this year.  The intention is that we will host our own session at an agreeable time for the Southern hemisphere, record it then run the recorded session at the allocated time to encourage people from the northern hemisphere to attend.

Climate change and COVID-19 are our greatest challenges and our hope is that the focus on Climate Change should not be shifted despite the daily reminders regarding the pandemic. If any of you have not seen the film Don’t Look Up, please make the time to watch it. It’s a very confronting film that demonstrates how difficult it is to communicate science to the public and how people’s interpretation of science messages can be manipulated. We all have a part to play in making the changes needed to avert what is otherwise inevitable.

Around midyear, we all look forward to the MWIA Congress in June this year in Taiwan, and this is a reminder that  the final abstract submissions for the MWIA Congress close on January 28th. We are gearing up to having many of our members submit abstracts and attend from Australia.

As a final note, I hope you all remain safe and keep positive despite the constant pressure we face as healers, during one of the world’s greatest health challenges and I look forward to riding these challenges and taking the journey through 2022 together.


Magdalena Simonis
President, AFMW


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