Australia is responding to the complex challenge of overdiagnosis



Publication Details

Moynihan, R., Barratt, A. L., Buchbinder, R., Carter, S. M., Dakin, T., Donovan, J., Elshaug, A. G., Glasziou, P. P., Maher, C. G., McCaffery, K. J. & Scott, I. A. (2018). Australia is responding to the complex challenge of overdiagnosis. Medical Journal of Australia, 209 (8), 332-334.


Overdiagnosis is now a health challenge recognised across many nations.1 Debates about its definition continue, but in short, overdiagnosis happens when health systems routinely diagnose people in ways that do not benefit them or that even do more harm than good.2 Overdiagnosis is unwarranted diagnosis, leading to harms from unnecessary labels and treatments and to the waste of health care resources that could be better spent dealing with genuine needs. To manage overdiagnosis and the sustainability of the health system more broadly, reversing the harm of too much medicine is becoming a health care priority, demanding effective responses in policy and practice. In Australia, a new alliance is developing a national plan to deal with this problem

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