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Medical Observer's 'abrupt' end

Posted 13 August 2019

GP publication Medical Observer is "closing abruptly" after 32 years in publication, editor Rada Rouse has revealed on social media.

The publication, initially independent, became part of the Australian Doctor Group in 2014 and was changed from a weekly tabloid to a monthly magazine format in 2016 as part of ADG's digital-first strategy.

At the time, the change was meant to ensure that the title "thrives into the future" but Rouse said in a Facebook post today: "Our September issue will be the last".

Although the closure is likely to mean the loss of at least two jobs among Medical Observer staff, Rouse said she would be "staying on with the Australian Doctor group".

ADG subsequently confirmed that the print version of Medical Observer would cease to be published and the masthead would "become a digital-only brand, with new content published daily to our AusDoc.PLUS website".

As such it would "continue to provide GP opinion and perspective read by 16,000 GPs each month" via "popular opinion articles, columns, news features and clinical guides". 

It said the move was "part of ADG's commitment to making all its mastheads easily accessible to GPs - and increasingly to other prescribers - anywhere, any time, on any device".

For most of its 32 years, Medical Observer was the main rival to Australian Doctor in the battle for GPs' attention.

Both regularly delivered high readership, however, since its revamp, readership of Medical Observer has on occasions fallen below that of the RACGP publication Australian Family Physician.

Nick Lush

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