1 in 5 Australians reported that they had a mental or behavioural condition during August 2020 to June 2021, and the National Health Priority Areas lists mental health as the fifth priority. Medical practitioners are the conduit between the patients, their community and access to physical and online mental health facilities and resources. As they are usually the first point of contact for patients with mental health issues, it is critical for medical practitioners to be adequately trained.
General practice plays a central role in the provision of mental health care in Australia. Easily accessed without referral, people in distress frequently turn to a general practice team for help. People talk to their GP about mental health more than any other issue and the majority of mental health services in Australia are delivered by GPs.
As such, the online Certificate Courses in Mental Health provide tailored general practitioner training to equip GPs with the skills to provide evidence-based, patient-centred care to people living with a mental illness. The online medical courses introduce skills and techniques to detect, assess and review patients with mental health issues, including PTSD, enabling practitioners to improve patient outcomes, identify and treat mental health issues and to work collaboratively with other professionals in the field. The course is delivered by GPs with a special interest in mental health and reviewed by mental health professionals.
By completing the Core Module and Clinical Enhancement Module in Mental Health, participants qualify for MBS items 2715 and 2717 (or equivalent item numbers for non-VR GPs). The Professional Certificate of Mental Health is recognised as professional development for practitioners who have completed their mental health training. The Core Module and Clinical Enhancement Module are also part of the Professional Certificate, so practitioners completing the Professional Certificate will also meet the requirements for mental health MBS recognition.
Gain an understanding of how to screen, diagnose, treat and manage common mental health conditions and provide a high-demand service to your patients in primary care.
Learn techniques to detect, assess and review patients with mental health issues including screening under the Mental Health Better Access Initiative, conduct mental health interviews, and develop and review Mental Health Plans.
Gain an introduction to PTSD with criteria to identify symptoms and provide treatments. Learn about other health conditions that may contribute to PTSD with interviews from carer and patient perspectives.
The courses are suitable for physicians and degree-qualified medical professionals.
Advanced Certificate of Medicinal Cannabis
Professional Diploma of Medicinal Cannabis
Prof Marco Falasca
Professor, Metabolism, School of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences, Curtin University, Australia
Professor Marco Falasca graduated in Pharmacy and then in Pharmaceutical Chemistry at the University of Camerino, Italy. His education further includes a Diploma of Specialisation in Applied Pharmacology at the University of Bari and a FORMEZ Research Award (PhD equivalent) at the Consorzio Mario Negri Sud, Italy. After three years at the New York University Medical Center, Department of Pharmacology (Head Prof Joseph Schlessinger), Prof Falasca took up a position as Head of the Unit of Physiopathology of Cell Signalling within the Consorzio Mario Negri Sud in 1998.
In 2001 he moved to London where he was appointed as Principal Research Fellow, Senior Lecturer within the Department of Medicine at the University College London. In 2007 he was appointed as Professor of Molecular Pharmacology at the Queen Mary University of London. He is currently Professor of Metabolism at Curtin University, Australia. He has published more than 100 papers in reputed journals and has been serving as an editorial board member for several international journals.
The focus of Prof Falasca’s research in the past 25 years has involved the investigation of signalling pathways regulating intracellular physiological and pathological processes. Prof Falasca’s current specific projects are dedicated to the investigation of the mechanisms involved in development and progression of pancreatic diseases.
A/Prof Jonathon Arnold
Associate Professor Jonathon Arnold is a world leader in the science of cannabis and the cannabinoids. He is Deputy Academic Director of the Lambert Initiative for Cannabinoid Therapeutics at the University of Sydney, Australia. This is a cross faculty research initiative that specialises in the discovery and development of cannabis-based medicines. In 2018 he was one of four scientists selected to advise the World Health Organisation (WHO) on their historical review of cannabis and the cannabinoids.
A/Prof Arnold has over 20 years’ experience in cannabinoid pharmacology and has published extensively on the molecular, cellular, neurobiological and behavioural actions of the phytocannabinoids, cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Since 2016 he and his team have conducted epilepsy research to improve the understanding of the anticonvulsant properties of the phytocannabinoids. He recently published a high-profile paper which shed new light on the mode of action of CBD in the treatment of childhood epilepsy (Altmetric 75). This paper received the Epilepsia Brain Science Prize honouring the most significant advance in knowledge in the field of epilepsy in 2019.
A/Prof Vicki Kotsirilos
AM, MBBS, FACNEM, FASLM, Awarded Honorary Fellowship of the RACGP
Adjunct Associate Professor, NICM Health Research Institute
Research Committee Member, NICM Health Research Institute
Associate Professor Vicki Kotsirilos AM is a respected general practitioner with over 30 years of clinical experience, integrating evidence-based holistic therapies such as acupuncture, nutritional and herbal medicine with mainstream healthcare.
A/Prof Kotsirilos keeps up to date with the research in these areas culminating in the development of the successful textbook A Guide to Evidence-Based Integrative and Complementary Medicine. She is also a regular writer for Medical Observer, publishing a monthly column on evidence-based Integrative Medicine and circulates research updates for Australian doctors.
A/Prof Kotsirilos holds adjunct associate professorial positions with NICM and La Trobe University's, Department of Dietetics and Human Nutrition, Faculty of Health Sciences, and formerly with Monash University. She was the founding Chair of the RACGP Integrative Medicine Working group, as well as the founder and Founding Past President of the Australasian Integrative Medicine Association (AIMA).
A/Prof Kotsirilos served as an active board member on AIMA for 20 years, forging positive relations with government and peak medical bodies such as the AMA and RACGP. She has served on many state and federal government committees, such as the Therapeutic Goods Administration, Complementary Medicine Evaluation Committee (eight years) and as the GP member on the Adverse Drug Reactions Advisory Committee (five years). In addition, A/Prof Kotsirilos served on the Victorian Council of the AMA and for several years worked closely with the Medical Panels, Victorian Workcover. She continues to work for regulatory federal government bodies such as AHPRA.
Dr Orit Holtzman
Dr Orit Holtzman is a medical doctor with a special interest in functional medicine and medicinal cannabis. She holds a Bachelor of Science in biology and psychology from the University of Tel Aviv, a PhD in neuroscience from the University of NSW and an MBBS from the Sydney Medical School at the University of Sydney.
After working in the public hospital system, Dr Holtzman has begun exploring wholistic health solutions and become passionate about utilising medicinal cannabis as a therapeutic agent. She began prescribing cannabis in 2019 under the mentorship of Dr Teresa Towpik, when she joined Compass Lifestyle Clinics. She now has more than 200 patients that have been approved for medicinal cannabis for various indications under her care, and is an authorised prescriber for multiple conditions. She also works as a medical educator, teaching doctors about medicinal cannabis and the endocannabinoid system.
She lives in the beautiful Blue Mountains in NSW with her husband and three children.
Dr Joe Kosterich
Doctor, speaker, author, media presenter and health industry consultant, Dr Joe Kosterich wants you to be healthy and get the most out of life.
Dr Kosterich writes for numerous medical and mainstream publications and is a regular on radio and television. He is often called to give opinions in medico legal cases, is clinical editor of Medical Forum Magazine, adjunct professor (teaching) at UWA and a lecturer at Curtin Medical School.
Medical Advisor to Medicinal Cannabis company Little Green Pharma and Chairman of Australian Tobacco Harm Reduction Association, Dr Kosterich has self-published two books: Dr Joe’s DIY Health and 60 Minutes To Better Health, and maintains a website and blog with health information and commentary.
Previously he held senior positions in the Australian Medical Association and sat on numerous industry and government boards. He has extensive corporate experience in the setting up and management of medical centres and in helping businesses maintain a healthy workforce.
Through all this he continues to see patients as a GP each week.
Dr John Teh
MBBS, Cannabinoid Clinician, Clinical Educator
Medical Director, PlantMed
Dr John Teh is the Medical Director of Plantmed Medical Cannabis Clinic, Australia. He has been working within the Medicinal Cannabis industry since the legalisation of cannabis for medicinal use in Australia in February 2016.
Dr Teh is actively involved in Cannabis Medicine education, training medical practitioners and allied health professionals in all areas of cannabinoid therapeutics. He is a medical advisor to various cannabis producers and suppliers within Australia, and consulted the Thailand government prior their introduction of their medicinal cannabis program in 2019.
Dr Teh has vast experience treating a variety of patients with Medical Cannabis and integrates nutrition and plant based medicines which support cannabinoid treatment in his practice. His wealth of knowledge makes him sought after in all areas of cannabis medicine and education.
Dr Shiksha Gallow
Dr Shiksha Gallow is the Medical Director and CEO of Biodata which is part of the JSE listed Labat Healthcare. She has vast academic qualifications in both the medical sector, public health and strategic management. Dr Gallow is registered with the HPCSA in Clinical Pathology as a Medical Scientist. She is also a registered Professional Natural Scientist with the SACNASP. Additionally, Dr Gallow is registered as an Ethnomedicine Medical Practioner with EPASA as well as an Ayurvedic Practioner and is also a registered Dr with the ANHA.
She holds a Masters Degree in Medical Science (MMedSci), a Masters in Medicine in Public Health Medicine (MMedMPH), Masters in Business Admin (MBA), and a PHD. She is currently completing a second PHD in the health profession with cannabinoids and prostate cancer. Furthermore, she completed her Clinical Pathology medical board exam Cum Laude (the most distinguished in South Africa at the time). She has also completed a Medical Cannabis accredited course for doctors with the University of Washington Medical School.
Dr Gallow has obtained degrees from Durban University, University of Roehampton UK, Open University UK, Milton Keynes University UK, University of Washington Medical School, and UNISA, and her MBA was affiliated with Harvard University. To add to her educational profile, Dr Gallow is also a qualified trainer, assessor and moderator with SETA and ETDP SAQA, as well as a Prince 2 Practitioner registered with APMG. Dr Gallow has also recently published two academic books internationally one in the field of Medicine and the other in Business Science.
Dr Gallow’s successes started in Clinical Pathology as the Regional Manager of Ampath Drs Du Buisson & Partners. Here her role was to advise clinicians on pathology results, interpretation and further diagnostic tests. She was responsible for the quality management and accreditation of the Ampath laboratories. She was then the Chief Operations Officer at Clinical Lab Services which is a division of the Wits University. Here, she was involved in many reputable clinical trials, such as the HIV vaccine study (IAVI), FACTS study, PreP study, IMPAACT, as well as the H3 Africa Biorepository study to name a few. She has been involved with and received funding from the NIH, USAID, PEPFAR, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for the clinical trial research projects.
Dr Gallow has vast experience in ensuring a facility obtains and retains accreditation and certification and complies with required accreditation quality standards and legislation. She has been involved in ISO 17025 and 15189 standards, British Qualogy GCLP, FHI DAIDS, OHS Health and Safety, and FDA inspections. At Biodata, she is involved in the clinical trials and registration of cannabinoid medicine. She is involved in the formulation of these medicines and holds the IP of a range of treatment protocols.
GP REGISTRARS: Doctors in training who are on a pathway to General Practice Registration through a recognised training provider receive a HealthCert Scholarship and save $500 on face-to-face certificate courses (two-day practical workshops) and $300 on online and hybrid certificate courses (one-day practical workshop with supporting online theory). This offer cannot be used in conjunction with the Early Bird special.
Each of the three levels of this course consists of eight modules which are delivered online and can be viewed and replayed at any time. All courses include:
There is a three-month exam period for the Professional and Advanced Certificates. In order to pass the assessment and progress to the next course, you must complete the assessment within three months of the exam opening date. Exam extensions of up to six months are available on a case by case basis.
Online activities for the Professional and Advanced Certificates include a pre-course activity, responding to interactive case discussions, knowledge- and scenario-based questions, two interactive webinars, and a post-course activity.
Online activities for the Professional Diploma level include a pre-course activity, literature review, responding to interactive case discussions, knowledge- and scenario-based questions, two interactive webinars, and a post-course activity. A clinical audit is also a module of the Professional Diploma designed to demonstrate your application of learning in clinical presentations. The clinical audit is separately accredited.
In order to meet the requirements of professional and academic learning, the course assessment includes professional requirements and two online examinations.
HealthCert recommends completion of all requirements at your convenience within three months of the exam opening date for Professional and Advanced Certificates and nine months of the course commencement date for the Professional Diploma.
Upon successful completion of the exam, course participants will receive the respective Certificates of Medicinal Cannabis and below points.
RACGP and ACRRM points pending.
This online three-part program consists of the Professional Certificate, Advanced Certificate, and Professional Diploma of Medical Cannabis.
Certified clinical attachments pathway
Course graduates may continue their professional development by completing a clinical attachment, which are available on request. These will be on a 1:1 basis providing the opportunity to observe clinical nutrition consultation, planning and decision-making and ask questions of the expert. Clinical attachments are available in Australia.
Postgraduate pathway for Medical Cannabis
This pathway is suitable for medical practitioners who are mainly interested in clinical academic study. Medical professionals who successfully complete the HealthCert Professional Certificate, Advanced Certificate and Professional Diploma of Women’s Health will be eligible to apply for recognition of prior learning