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AusPharm news

SHPA Award to take young pharmacist from Alice Springs to London : 08/08/2011 :

Sophie Higgins, pictured right, is the recipient of the 2011 SHPA DBL Hospira Young Pharmacist Award which will enable her to undertake an international preceptorship at Evelina Children’s Hospital and King’s College Hospital, London.
 
Since her graduation in 2001 Sophie has had a varied career which has included an appointment as an Australian Youth Ambassador Pharmacist in Vanuatu where she educated pharmacy staff in regional hospitals about medication, disease management and patient counselling.  Her current role is Paediatric Pharmacist at the Alice Springs Hospital.

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No change to paracetamol dosing guidelines in Australia following changes overseas : 08/08/2011 :

There have been recent changes to the recommended dosages of some paracetamol-containing products in the USA and the UK.

In July, McNeil Consumer Healthcare announced their decision to reduce the maximum recommended adult dosing on their paracetamol 500 mg Tylenol products, from 4000 mg to 3000mg per day. This change was instigated by McNeil, not the USA Food and Drug Administration.

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RGH E-Bulletin: Antidepressant augmentation : 08/08/2011 :

The topic of this week's RGH E‑Bulletin is Antidepressant augmentation.

"There are currently many effective pharmacological therapies available for the treatment of major depressive disorder. Despite this, only 50-60% of patients respond to an initial trial of an antidepressant, and 35-40% experience remission in the first eight weeks of treatment. The next step in the treatment of depression that does not respond to first choice therapy can be a switch to an alternate antidepressant, or to augment the antidepressant with another drug."

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

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Nominations called for SA Pharmacist of the year : 05/08/2011 :

Nominations are now being taken for the South Australian Pharmacist of the Year, with the finalists moving onto the national finals for the PSA Excellence Award.
 
The Pharmacist of the Year award acknowledges an achiever in the profession: a pharmacist who is innovative and strives to raise practice standards through their professionalism by providing a model of practice which others strive to emulate.

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Aus / NZ Pharmacy Councils sign MOC : 05/08/2011 :

At the 9th Life Long Learning in Pharmacy Conference held recently in Rotorua, New Zealand the Australian Pharmacy Council (APC) took the opportunity to sign a Memorandum of Cooperation (MOC) with its close colleague the Pharmacy Council of New Zealand (PCNZ).

The APC undertakes accreditation functions for the PCNZ and works closely with its Trans Tasman neighbor in developing consistent processes and practices in assessing practitioners trained in countries other than Australia and New Zealand, intern training programs, and standards for continuing professional development. 

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Pharmacists willing to administer meds in emergencies : 05/08/2011 :

This week's AusPharm poll followed on from a recent Griffith University study (abstract) investigated the opinions of community pharmacists in administering a non-prescription medicine in a medical emergency.

The positive response from 'Listers supports that of the study – most (82% of 'Listers) would administer emergency S2/S3 medicines, especially if they had been trained to do so. Pharmacists are caring and compassionate folk - but are not careless: they  want to be both competent and  covered when being  the 'professional' Good Samaritan. 

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AusPharm CE: RGH E-Bulletin Digest No. 38 : 04/08/2011 :

The next in our 2011 series of continuing education activities is the RGH E-Bulletin Digest No. 38.

This CE activity assesses your understanding of four recent RGH Pharmacy E-Bulletins (Volumes 42-8 - 42-11  -->  June - July 2011).

After completing this activity, pharmacists should be able to:

  • Outline approaches to prophylaxis against recurrent urinary tract infections
  • Describe the approach to safe and effective dosing of gentamicin
  • Understand the nature of problems associated with the use of synthetic cannabis products
  • Discuss the management of intractable hiccups

This activity has been accredited for 1 CPD credit suitable for inclusion in an individual pharmacist’s CPD plan. Accreditation number: CX110022l.

Click here to do this Continuing Education activity. Or, if you prefer, you might like to take a look at our other CE activities here .

AusPharm gratefully acknowledges the financial support provided by MIMs.

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New Drugs in Pregnancy database, quinine still causing grief : 04/08/2011 :

The latest issue of Medicines Safety Update has been published as part of the August 2011 issue of Australian Prescriber.

Featured in this edition is the release by the TGA of a new, searchable database for use by health professionals prescribing or dispensing medicines to pregnant women. The database can be found here.

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Multicultural communication award for NPS : 04/08/2011 :

NPS has been honoured with another Multicultural Communication Award for its suite of in-language medicine brand choices radio advertisements. The award for the best audio visual resource in the non-Government category was presented on 28th July 2011 at a NSW Parliament House ceremony.

NPS CEO, Dr Lynn Weekes, says the award-winning radio advertisements enable Chinese (Mandarin and Cantonese) and Italian speakers to make more informed decisions about their medicine choices.

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Marketing for pharmacists, not pharmacies : 04/08/2011 :

The dynamics of the mix between pharmacies and pharmacists are set to take on a new importance in the profession as it moves towards the future, so much so that PAC11 has a special session devoted to the subject.
 
Presented by Phill Woods, pictured right,  of Griffith University, Queensland, the session will examine the opportunities and challenges of first differentiating the pharmacist from the pharmacy, and then pharmacists in the eyes of the audience they serve.

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Poll: administering non prescription medicines in an emergency : 03/08/2011 :

A recent Griffith University study consucted by Sara McMillan, Dr Laetitia Hattingh and Dr Michelle King (abstract) investigated the opinions of community pharmacists in administering a non-prescription medicine in a medical emergency.

The results of the survey showed that some pharmacists had administered non-prescription medicines in an emergency situation in the past but the majority of the participants (36/43) wanted clarification of their role in treating patients in a medical emergency, as currently legislative and professional guidelines are not clear and this is therefore a grey area.

What would you do if confronted by such an emergency in your work as a pharmacist? Please let us know by voting in today's AusPharm poll.

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How to post to AusPharmList using a nickname : 03/08/2011 :

'Listers told us in last week's poll that they'd like the option of posting to AusPharmList using a nickname rather than their real name. We said we'd give this a trial for a month.

A reminder that, until we tweak our backend and come up with a more elegant way to do this, people wanting to post using a nickname should either tick the 'Request moderator post this anonymously' box if posting at the website or simply request that we use your nickname rather than your real name if you're posting by email.

Our preference remains that people post using their real name and state their area of practice as well.

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Children in poorest areas have 70% more dental decay : 03/08/2011 :

Young children from the lowest socioeconomic areas have about 70% more dental decay than children from the highest socioeconomic areas, according to a report released by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW).

The report, Dental decay among Australian children, shows poorer oral health in disadvantaged areas across all states and territories (for which data were available) although the extent was varied.

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MedsCheck Reminder : 03/08/2011 :

Time is running out for those pharmacies who have been invited to register interest in the MedsCheck and Diabetes MedsCheck Pilot. Registration of Interest closes this Sunday 7 August.

The pilot, funded under the Fifth Community Pharmacy Agreement, will run through a selection of community pharmacies representing a broad cross section of locations and demographics. The objective of the pilot is to test the proposed eligibility criteria and identify the likely numbers of patients who qualify for the services.

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Dabigtran (Pradaxa): NPS Radar Review : 03/08/2011 :

The latest issue of NPS RADAR provides an independent review of dabigatran (Pradaxa), an oral anticoagulant, for preventing stroke or systemic embolism in people with non-valvular atrial fibrillaton.

In Australia, dabigatran is currently only available on private prescription for this indication. Dabigatran is currently PBS listed for short-term prophylaxis of venous thromboembolism after hip or knee replacement surgery.

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PHARMeFOOTY weekly wrap : 03/08/2011 :

AFL Round 19

AFL Round 19 was again friendly for tippers with 228 selecting all 7 winners. The result came down to cumulative margin with Kim Freeman being the weekly winner. In 2nd place was Michael Bark with  Samantha Waller from St
John of God Medical Clinic Pharmacy Subiaco in 3rd position.

NRL Round 21

NRL Round 21 was again tough for tippers with 7 from 8 being the best score. Margie Grant from CGHS had the best margin tip so is this week’s winner. In 2nd place was Janet Turcic with Andrew Kelly from Kippax Fair Pharmacy in 3rd position.

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Pharmacists' role in chronic illness management : 02/08/2011 :

According to media reports released this week, the number of Australians aged 65 and older is expected exceed  22 per cent by 2050. As a result, the role of pharmacists in helping to contain the cost of chronic illness has never been more important, according to the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia.

Treasury projections show health spending on people older than 65 is expected to increase sevenfold in the 40-year period, while spending on people over 85 will grow 12-fold.  On top of this, life expectancy has soared. From 1881 to 1890, life expectancy was 47.2 years, and 50.8 for women but has now risen to79.3 years for men and 83.9 years for women.

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MIMS Monthly Medicine Update : 02/08/2011 :

The MIMS August 2011 Monthly Medicine Update is now available. Click the link to read it now.

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Latest edition of Australian Prescriber out now : 02/08/2011 :

The August 2011 issue of Australian Prescriber is now available online. Topics featured in this issue include:

  • The workload of being a patient
  • Metabolic effects of antipsychotics
  • Managing atrial fibrillation
  • Pharmaceutical excipients

It also contains the most recent Medicines Safety Update.

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Union: pharmacists not getting leave loading. Guild: show us the proof : 02/08/2011 :

Employee pharmacist union, the Pharmacists' Division of APESMA (PDA) claims to have identified 80 examples of Australian pharmacists not being paid the annual leave loading stipulated in the Pharmacy Industry Award.

Jacki Baulch, Senior Industrial Officer for APESMA, has called on the Pharmacy Guild to help stamp out this and other illegal underpayments of pharmacists across the country.

"More and more evidence is piling up showing that pharmacists are being underpaid and undervalued by their employers," she said.

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