"Operational Health" Podcast

Operational Health is occassional podcast hosted by Craig. In conversation with other industry experts, the podcast examines planning, delivery and management of health and emergency ​medical services. From in the air to pre-hospital. From inside the hospital to international responses.


The podcast is freely available on iTunes and Craig's companion site www.operationalhealth.com. A number of podcast episodes are available on this page. 

Guest: Jan Biciancin

Jan Biciancin speaks to Craig about disaster, emergency planning and how it contrasts with pandemic planning. He also speaks about the role of the community, media and elected officials during a disaster.

Healthcare professionals ability to respond to disasters.

Part One             Part Two

Provision of healthcare in a low resource & disaster environment
Part One        Part Two
Managing the Operating Room
         Part One             Part Two     
Guest: Assist Professor Jamie Ranse

Jamie Ranse speaks with Craig about disaster management, disaster nursing, the educational requirements to support clinical disaster deployments and the willingness- and ability- of healthcare staff to respond to a disaster situation. 


We explore the financial, industrial and workforce planning issues that can influence healthcare staff support of an emergency or disaster and discusses the disaster healthcare education situation in Australia.

Guest: Dr Nancy Kerr

Dr Nancy Kerr talks about what she believes is the biggest advances in her specialty of Obstetrics/ Gynecology, and reflects upon its empowering nature. Nancy also contrasts the resource-rich healthcare environment of her usual place of practice to her experiences at the remote Navaho Indian Reservation Health Service and the disaster zone in Haiti. While in Nepal, Nancy and her team developed an amazing device to assist management of life threatening post-partum haemorrhage. A device that can be built, not by a medical device company with costs in the $1000s, but by a local tailor in a village anywhere.

Guest: Professor Dr Mark Hauswald.

Dr Mark Hauswald talks about providing healthcare services, from a developing country like Nepal, through to his experiences in the Haiti disaster and with a Malaysian Ambulance Service. He also reflects upon the importance of tailoring healthcare interventions for that environment.


In Part Two, Mark discusses his experience with the University's Global Health program and Gates Foundation in Nepal, and the team's approach to capacity building. He explores the importance of teamwork and how it works in disaster response, in contrast to low- resource environments.

Guest: Adam Starr

With a background in pre-hospital emergency care, and now a professional pilot, Adam Starr is a voluntary pilot for Angel Flight. Adam Starr talks about Angel Flight and its role in supporting healthcare service delivery in rural Australia..

Guest: Kate Mears, RN

The Operating Room, Operating Theatre or Operating Suite is a mysterious place, even for health care staff. Healthcare Management Consultant Kate Mears discusses the changes to technology and management techniques and their impact on the work of the Operating Room. Kate and I reflect upon the operating theatre hierarchy, surgery cancellation, patient advocacy and the use of Time-Out/ Checklists in this critical department. We also discuss the development of safety and quality in healthcare within the Operating Theatre and its impact on both staff and patients.

Guest: Zule Khan, RN

The experience of working in an Emergency Department is often a daunting one for Doctors and Ward Nurses alike. Welcome to the curious world of Triage! In this special Christmas edition of the podcast, Zuleika Khan explores the sometimes cruel, occasionally pleasant, always stressful world of emergency medicine, and how she has evolved from performing healthcare to performing cabaret. Huh? Cabaret?

Guest: Noelle McCabe, Ambulance Victoria's Solution Delivery Manager

Used by all Ambulance Services in Eastern Australia, VACIS, the Victorian Ambulance Clinical Information System, is a patient care record computer application specifically designed for Australian ambulance services. Ambulance Victoria's Solution Delivery Manager, Noelle McCabe, discusses the development of a mobile patient care record and reveals some of the difficulties along the way.

Telehealth- delivering healthcare regardless of location
         Part One             Part Two    

Guest: Dr Laurie Wilson, PhD

It is against the backdrop of e-health and electronic patient care records that Craig speaks with Dr Laurie Wilson, formally of the CSIRO and University of Western Sydney. Dr Wilson and I explore what telehealth actually is, the growth and development of Telehealth in Australia and how his participatory design approach was used in a landmark virtual critical care telehealth project.


In Part Two, we discuss issues surrounding the cross-over between technological and organisational change in healthcare. Laurie reflects upon the potential future of a healthcare system empowered by telehealth and the need for a telehealth strategy.

Guest: Roxanne Moore

In 2014, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs  funded a “Think Paper” about the use of new media in disasters. Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook and other new media (including YouTube) are all in the mix, but it is twitter that is certainly the most immediate. It is from that foundation that Roxanne Moore wrote “Hashtag standards for Emergencies” with Andrej Verity. I explore the research with Roxanne and the discuss the impact of the research.


Guest: Rachel Worsley

Social media in all its forms infiltrates our lives on a daily basis. Whether it be FaceBook, YouTube, Blogs, Twitter, Pinterest or some other platform, social media is a modern communication device for many people. Reporter Rachel Worsley and I explore the use of Social Media by healthcare professionals, from patient engagement through to providing personalised clinical advice. The perceptions of national lead organisations, such as AHPRA (the Australian Health Professional Registration Authority) are also discussed as we uncover misunderstandings around the use of social media. 

Guest: Martin Sosa

Dr Martin Sosa is a General Surgeon who has been deployed on multiple missions with Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors without Borders). However, over his work with MSF, he found himself in emergency situations were surgery was not the only medical specialty required. Martin is an example of the work being done by organisations, like MSF, that rapidly adapt to the immediate clinical need, in extremely difficult operational environments.  I spoke with Martin about his experiences in Yemen and South Sudan shortly before his MSF deployment to Central African Republic. 

Guest: Clinical Associate Professor Paul Middleton

DREAM is an abbreviation for "Distributed Research in Emergency and Acute Medicine". By using a new approach, it seeks to explore a problem which is still only partially recognised or appreciated. That is; to expand the epidemiologic knowledge of emergency medicine patients, a medical specialty that annually serves the equivalent of a third of the Australian population.


Prof Middleton is the Chair and Principal Investigator of the DREAM) Collaboration. Paul is Clinical Associate Professor in the Discipline of Emergency Medicine at the University of Sydney; Conjoint Associate Professor in the School of Biomedical Engineering and Conjoint Senior Lecturer in the School of Public Health and Community Medicine at the University of New South Wales. 

Guest: Assist Prof Jamie Ranse, RN

Craig chats with Assistant Professor Jamie Ranse about the clinical and operational planning that sits behind mass gatherings. Using World Youth Day 2008 as a case study, Jamie discusses the need to engage a cross section of health and healthcare providers. International perspectives are also discussed with the underlying messaging being that progress toward improved health planning at mass gathers relies on shared definitions and data points and moving away from purely descriptive journal articles to articles.


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craig AT cahooper DOT com