Was 'idiot' politics to blame for Australia’s syphilis epidemic?
‘She was struggling to get the girl to come back for treatment so she told her that if she didn’t come back, all her hair would fall out.”
This is a GP talking about the psychology employed by one of her colleagues — an Aboriginal health worker — for patient recalls. Both are at the heart of a battle against the syphilis outbreak that has been raging across Australia for the past eight years.
“I think I know why she said it,” the GP, who works in the NT but does not want to be identified, continues.
“Hair loss is seen very occasionally in