Dr Michael Gannon elected new AMA President

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The AMA have opted for a ‘new broom sweeps clean’ approach with the election yesterday of Western Australian obstetrician and gynaecologist Dr Michael Gannon as President.

Dr Gannon, head of obstetrics and gynaecology at the St John of God Subiaco Hospital replaces outgoing President Associate Professor Brian Owler, whose two year term has ended.

The AMA Presidential election was contested in 2016. Vice President under A/Prof Owler, Steven Parnis was unsuccessful in his bid for the top job. He now steps down and is replaced in the Vice President’s role by general practitioner Dr Tony Bartone.

Addressing his first media conference as President, Dr Gannon said politicians must put health front and centre of their policies for the remainder of the election.

His comments follow outgoing President A/Prof Owler’s final speech in which he accused the Abbott and Turnbull Governments of refusing to engage in a constructive debate with the health profession and deliberately undermining the work of the AMA.

However, Dr Gannon has already adopted a more conciliatory approach.

“The AMA needs strong leadership with an appetite to engage constructively with Government, whichever political party is in power,” Dr Gannon said.

“There are currently reviews into the Medicare Benefits Schedule, private health insurance, and primary health care underway.

“It is vital that the profession has a strong voice in Canberra, and is willing to embark on constructive interaction with Government in responding to the recommendations that these reports will inevitably include.”

Australian Private Hospitals Association CEO Michael Roff has welcomed Dr Gannon and Dr Bartone to their new roles.

“APHA and the AMA have a long standing relationship and have worked together over many years on issues to benefit of Australian patients,” Mr Roff said.

“We look forward to continuing this work, particularly around issues of private health insurance, with the new leadership team.”

Dr Michael Gannon:

  • Head of Department: Obstetrics and Gynaecology, St John of God Subiaco Hospital
  • AMA WA President and former Vice President
  • Chair of AMA’s Ethics and Medico-legal Committee (last two years)
  • Inducted into the AMA Roll of Fellows

Dr Tony Bartone:

  • Victorian General Practitioner
  • Outgoing President of AMA Victoria
  • Member of the AMA Federal Council
  • Inducted into the AMA Roll of Fellows

Their two year terms began on Sunday, 29 May 2016.

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