Many SmartClinics GPs specialise in managing chronic disease (long term) health conditions. Some examples of chronic health problems include high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, asthma, emphysema, arthritis, osteoporosis, long term back pain and many others. Please note that our expertise is not limited to these conditions. If you have a chronic health problem come and talk to your GP – chances are we can help! To find a SmartClinics GP near you who has a special interest in helping patients with Chronic Disease use you our Doctor Search tool and enter your location into the search bar.
Chronic Disease Management Plans and Team Care Arrangements
If you have certain chronic health conditions you may be eligible for a Chronic Disease Management Plan. This is a bulk billed health summary done by our GPs that summarises all of your health conditions and what the current management plan is. This can be a very useful document to have if you are likely to go in to hospital or will be travelling. If you would like to find out if you are eligible please discuss it with your GP.
Under certain circumstances, after having a chronic disease management plan done, you may also be eligible for a Team Care Arrangement. This is a bulk billed document that allows you access for up to 5 allied health visits (generally bulk billed) such as podiatrist, physiotherapist, exercise physiologist, occupational therapist, dietician or diabetes educator.
Both of these plans can be renewed every 12 months, including the 5 allied health visits.
Please note that we may be unable to deal with a specific health concern at the same time as doing a Chronic Disease Management Plan or Team Care Arrangement, and may have to rebook another appointment. If you are coming in for either of these please let the reception staff know.
Help quitting smoking
Smoking is one of the leading causes of cancer, not just lung but many other types throughout the body. It can also result in developing emphysema and greatly increases the risk of major blood vessel disease such as heart attacks and strokes. It also increases the risk of minor blood vessel disease, which can result in problems such as impaired kidney function and erectile dysfunction. In addition it is a very expensive habit and the cost is only going up with increased taxes on smoking over the coming years.
If you are thinking about quitting smoking or have already made the decision but are struggling please come in and talk to one of our doctors. We can provide advice on the best way to go about quitting and also provide a prescription if indicated for various treatments including nicotine patches and Champix.
Lung testing (for asthma / emphysema)
Many of our nurses are able to perform lung function testing (Spirometry) which can help detect all sorts of lung disease including asthma and emphysema. Our doctors will then interpret and discuss the results with you. If you wish to have this performed please notify the receptionist when booking – a longer appointment is required.
ECG (investigation of electrical activity in the heart)
An electrocardiogram, or ECG as it is more commonly known, is a useful tool for detecting abnormal heart rhythms as well as other heart problems including heart attacks and enlarged hearts. Our nurses are able to perform ECGs. However, this is usually done at a doctor’s request. If you think you may require an ECG it is usually best to make an appointment to discuss it with one of our GPs first. If you have chest pain or think you might be having a heart attack you should call 000 directly without delay to seek urgent medical treatment.