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AusPharm news

Sydney Uni Faculty of Pharmacy wins major NHMRC grant : 24/10/2013 :

Researchers from the University of Sydney's Faculty of Pharmacy and the Sydney Medical School have landed a major research grant from the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) to set up a new evidence-gathering research venture that will generate vital information about the role that medicines play over Australians' lifetimes.

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Shortage of Neo-Mercazole (carbimazole) : 24/10/2013 :

Most pharmacists would be aware that, at present, there is a global shortage of Neo-Mercazole (carbimazole). A new, regular supply of the drug is not expected to be available to pharmacies and patients until mid November.

The Therapeutic Goods Administration yesterday published guidelines for both consumers and health professionals on how to obtain carbimazole until then.

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2014 Intern Written Examination dates announced : 24/10/2013 :

The Australian Pharmacy Council (APC) yesterday released the dates of the 2014 Intern Written Examinations.

The Intern Written Examination is developed and conducted by the APC on behalf of the Pharmacy Board of Australia.

7 dates will be available in 2014 with one date still available in 2013 - 8 December. Practice questions and a tutorial are available.

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Poll: will the Guild's new leadership team be good for pharmacy? : 23/10/2013 :

In his opinion piece for AusPharm yesterday, Guild Executive Director David Quilty observed that, in the last 12 months, "the Guild has welcomed a new National President and Executive Director as well as new Branch Presidents and Branch Directors in the two most populous States of NSW and Victoria. This is a major changing of the guard."

Will the Guild's new leadership thing be a good thing for pharmacy? Please let us know what you think by voting in today's AusPharm poll.

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Pharmacy Under Threat petition delivered : 23/10/2013 :

The 1.1 million signature strong Pharmacy Under Threat petition has been delivered to the House of Representatives in Canberra.

22 boxes of petition forms were transported up the hill from the Guild national secretariat in Canberra. The mammoth petition response will reinforce to politicians the importance placed by patients all over Australia on community pharmacies, the Pharmacy Guild believes.

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ASMI welcomes new Guild President, looks to Guild for help in progressing S3 advertising : 23/10/2013 :

Welcoming the appointment of George Tambassis as the new national president of the Pharmacy Guild, the Australian Self Medication Industry (ASMI) said yesterday the organisation had, over many years, enjoyed a strong, collaborative partnership with the Guild which included its contribution to ASMI’s proposal for regulatory reform to permit direct to consumer advertising of Schedule 3 medicines.

In his presentation to delegates at the recent PAC13 conference Guild President Tambassis flagged Schedule 3 advertising as one of his priority issues on assuming the Guild Presidency.

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Rate of pharmaceutical poisonings in decline : 22/10/2013 :

Poisonings by pharmaceuticals have decreased significantly in the last decade with numbers decreasing from and average of 50 cases per 100,000 population in 1999–00 to 31 cases per 100,000 population in 2005–06. 

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New pharmacy app for script ordering to launch Thursday : 22/10/2013 :

The Australia-wide launch of free new pharmacy app, called eRx Express, will take place this week, allowing people to order their scripts using their smart phone.

The new app means that people can scan and pre-order their script medicines anywhere and anytime they want and collect them at a time and date that suits.

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PSA fellowships for Gilbert, Halstead : 22/10/2013 :

Pharmaceutical Society of Australia Fellowships have been awarded to two eminent South Australian pharmacists.

Professor Andrew Gilbert and Peter Halstead were presented with Fellowships to the Society by National President Grant Kardachi at the SA/NT Branch President’s Reception and Dinner last week.

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RGH E‑Bulletin: Peri-Operative Management of the New Oral Anticoagulants : 21/10/2013 :

The topic of this week's RGH E‑Bulletin is Peri-Operative Management of the New Oral Anticoagulants.

"New oral anticoagulants including dabigatran (Pradaxa®), apixaban (Eliquis®) and rivaroxaban (Xarelto®) are now available. During the perioperative period the bleeding risk and risk of thrombosis must be balanced: anticoagulants should be ceased with the aim of patients being off their anticoagulant for minimal time during the perioperative period. Processes for management of the newer anticoagulants in the perioperative period are potentially more complex.Apixaban should be used in caution in moderate (Child-Pugh B) hepatic impairment or any degree of hepatic impairment associated with coagulopathy."

Click here to read the bulletin in full. The E‑Bulletins are archived on the AusPharmList website here.

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King appointed Shadow Health Minister : 21/10/2013 :

Catherine King has been appointed Shadow Minister for Health. She is part of the opposition ministry announced on Friday by new ALP leader Bill Shorten.

Ms King is  no stranger to Health as she was Parliamentary Secretary for Health and Ageing from 2010 to 2013.

She was first elected to Federal Parliament in 2001 as member for Ballarat and was re-elected at subsequent Federal Elections in 2004, 2007, 2010 and 2013.

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Tambassis assumes Guild Presidency : 21/10/2013 :

Victorian pharmacist George Tambassis will today take over from Kos Sclavos as National President of the Pharmacy Guild of Australia.

This follows Mr Tambassis' appointment as 'Interim Council Nominee' to the position by the Guild's National Council in June. According to the Guild at the time, the purpose of appointing Mr Tambassis as Interim Council Nominee was to provide him with the opportunity to build networks with Guild members and stakeholders.

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Supply of PBS medicines in areas of NSW affected by bushfires : 21/10/2013 :

The Department of Health on Friday activated its disaster management protocol for the supply of PBS medicines in areas affected by the NSW bushfires.

The protocol covers a range of issues including medication supply when no hard copy prescription is available, variations to the 4/20 day rule and to the 'too soon' rule with regard to authority prescriptions.

The Department of Health letter, with all the details, is available here.

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Pharmacists don't like to make decisions : 18/10/2013 :

In an enlightening presentation at the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia's PAC13 conference on Friday, Canadian academic Professor Zubin Austin asked delegates to consider whether it is primarily pharmacists' personality traits that is making the pace of practice change towards a service driven model of care so glacially slow.

He spoke about the differences in background between pharmacists and doctors, suggesting that pharmacists more typically come from lower social classes than doctors and, as such, may be more willing to accept authority from above and less willing to lead.

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November 2013 PBS schedule : 18/10/2013 :

Download the Full PBS schedule

Download the PBS ‘Summary of Changes’

Download the Efficient Funding of Chemotherapy – S100 Arrangements Supplement

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Tambassis gets the leadership nod, Rigby a close second : 18/10/2013 :

The person voted by 'listers in this week's AusPharm poll as the best leader for the pharmacy profession, with 27% of the vote, is incoming Guild President George Tambassis. Mr Tambassis takes up his new position on Monday. 

A close second in the poll, with 23% of the vote, was well known clinical and consultant pharmacist Debbie Rigby.

Former Guild President and current PSA NSW President John Bronger polled 14% and current PSA National President Grant Kardachi polled 12%. The best of the rest was Justin Lee who attracted 10% of the total vote. Of note, Mr Lee is some 20 years younger than those who polled above him.

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APHS Managing Partner recognised by Financial Review : 17/10/2013 :

APHS Managing Partner, Cathie Reid, has been included in the Australian Financial Review’s list of the top 100 Women of Influence in the Business Entrepreneur category. 

Ms Reid sits at the helm of the Brisbane-based APHS Group. APHS are suppliers of pharmaceutical and clinical services for the hospital, oncology, aged care and community pharmacy sectors.

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Pharmacies set to lose $2 a script, need to change focus : 17/10/2013 :

The average net profit per PBS prescription is set to drop by about $2 once price disclosure cuts in fully, JR Pharmacy Services Managing Partner Mark Nicholson believes.

Mr Nicholson revealed the forecast during a presentation at the PAC13 conference in Brisbane last Saturday.

He also highlighted that, while almost all of a typical (non warehouse) pharmacy's net profit dollars come from the dispensary and from S2/S3 medicines, non health related front of shop stock accounts for a large percentage of total stock holding both in dollar terms and shelf space.

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SHPA Sydney Leadership Symposium : 17/10/2013 :

The NSW branch of the Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Australia (SHPA) will soon be running a leadership symposium focusing on 'Expanding personal influence and negotiation skills.'

The symposium will feature two presenters who have worked closely with pharmacists in the past, Philip Pogson and Brad Rilatt.

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RGH Pharmacy E-Bulletin CPD Digest - Issue No 64 : 17/10/2013 :

The next in our 2013 series of continuing professional development activities is the RGH E-Bulletin Digest No. 64.

This CPD activity assesses your understanding of four recent RGH Pharmacy E-Bulletins, Volumes 51-7 → 51-10 (Aug/Sep 2013).

You can access these E-Bulletins individually here or as a group here (this Digest includes the 4 bulletins, the references and the questions).

After completing this activity, pharmacists should be able to:

  • Discuss the clinical pharmacology of degarelix
  • Describe current evidence in relation to the association between fish oil supplementation and prostate cancer
  • Discuss issues in relation to VTE thromboprohylaxis for obese patients
  • Outline approaches that can be used for the management of Behavioural and Psychological Symptoms of Dementia (BPSD).

This activity has been accredited for 0.5hr of Group One CPD (0.5 CPD Credits) that may be converted to 1 Group Two CPD Credit upon successful completion of the corresponding assessment for inclusion on an individual pharmacist's CPD Record.
Accreditation number: A1310AP1.

Click here to do this Continuing Professional Development activity.

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