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AusPharm news

Codeine: real time recording and reporting the way forward : 16/10/2015 :

Pharmacists are clear on what they believe is the way forward on codeine scheduling with 74% of those voting in this week's AusPharm poll believing real time recording and reporting of sales to be the best option.

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New PDL support phone number for pharmacists reporting of incidents : 15/10/2015 :

PDL members from NSW and ACT now have a NEW phone number to dial for incident reports and for advice in relation to incidents - 1300 854 838. PDL is encouraging pharmacists from those jurisdictions to save the number into their phones for easy reference.

Together with the new phone line for NSW and ACT, PDL has appointed John Guy as the Professional Officer for the state / territory. John brings a wealth of pharmacy and industry experience to the PDL support service and has personally managed and owned pharmacies for more than 27 years.

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Homeopathy website cops big fine for for false or misleading claims : 15/10/2015 :

Following an action brought by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, the Federal Court yesterday ordered the company behind the Homeopathy Plus website to pay penalties of $115,000 and its director, Ms Frances Sheffield, to pay $23,000 in penalties for making false or misleading representations about the effectiveness of the whooping cough vaccine and homeopathic remedies as an alternative to the whooping cough vaccine.

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SHPA members choosing wisely : 15/10/2015 :

SHPA members are currently selecting the five statements that SHPA will contribute to the second Choosing Wisely Australia release, due in early 2016.

Choosing Wisely Australia, an initiative of NPS MedicineWise, seeks to help 'the medical community and consumers start an important conversation about improving the quality of healthcare by eliminating unnecessary and sometimes harmful tests, treatments, and procedures.'

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Adherence is a big medicines issue in Australia : 15/10/2015 :

Results from a recent survey conducted for NPS MedicineWise show that many Australian adults report they are not taking their prescription medicines as directed.

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Growth in rural pharmacy numbers 'reflects the national public benefit being delivered by the current pharmacy regulatory model' : 15/10/2015 :

The number of pharmacies per head of population in Australia is now greater in rural areas than in urban areas according to information published yesterday in Pharmacy Guild publication Forefront.

 

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New FIP report shows how pharmacists can contribute to mental health care : 14/10/2015 :

The increasing roles that pharmacists and their national associations are taking in mental health care are illustrated in a new document from the International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) - Focus on mental health: The contribution of the pharmacist - published on World Mental Health Day last Saturday

The document gives an overview of the areas in mental health care in which pharmacists are involved, including health promotion, early detection, triage, optimising treatment outcomes, education (including addiction prevention), shaping public policies, research and interprofessional practice.

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Poll: how best to deal with non-prescription codeine : 14/10/2015 :

The issue of what to do with the scheduling of non-prescription codeine remains a hot topic in pharmacy.

The TGA's Advisory Committee on Medicines Scheduling recently recommended that all Schedule 2 and 3 products be moved into Schedule 4. Product manufacturers, consumers and the Pharmacy Guild oppose the move however some medical groups and addiction medicine specialists are in favour of the move. Consultation on the proposal ends tomorrow (15 October).

Ambrose Yuen suggested we ask 'listers what they think is the best way forward. Up-schedule? Real time monitoring? Decreasing pack sizes (or both of the previous two)?

Please let us know what you think by voting in today's AusPharm poll.

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NZ sets out a vision for pharmacy : 14/10/2015 :

The New Zealand Ministry of Health has this week published a Draft Pharmacy Action Plan 2015-2020.

In the same way as the profession in Australia and other developed countries is seeking to redefine itself, the NZ plan aims to 'articulate how the capacity and capability of the pharmacy workforce can be more effectively used as part of an integrated health system'. 

It sets out a direction for pharmacy services under five focus areas - population and personal health, pharmacist clinical services, acute demand management, dispensing and supply services and pharmacist prescribing.

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eRx launches 2015 Pharmacy Survey Report identifying business value of ETP : 14/10/2015 :

eRx Script Exchange yesterday published the results of its 2015 Pharmacy eHealth Survey identifying the business impact of ETP (electronic transfer of prescriptions) on community pharmacy since eRx’s launch in 2009.

A total of 740 pharmacies, representing 14% of Australia’s community pharmacy sector, took part in the survey, which ran in the first half of this year. The survey  focused on the four key areas of dispensing and workflow, patient outcomes, challenges and priorities, and innovations for the future.

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Consultation on My Health Record education and training package for health providers : 14/10/2015 :

The Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association is seeking feedback on what should be included in the national My Health Record (replacing PCEHR) education and training package for health providers, which the AHHA is developing on behalf of the Commonwealth Department of Health.

To have your say, click here to take part in a short survey.

The survey will close on 15 October 2015, tomorrow.

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Hospital pharmacist outreach medication reviews achieve high level of patient and GP satisfaction : 13/10/2015 :

More than 90% of patients who received a medication review by a hospital pharmacist after leaving hospital said their review was worthwhile and that they felt more confident and less confused about their medicines according to a study published in the Journal of Pharmacy Practice and Research.

Researchers from Monash Health reviewed how patients and GPs felt about the hospital’s Hospital Outreach Medication Review (HOMR) service, which provides a service to almost 500 patients a year. The service aims to prevent readmission to hospital or emergency department presentation of people at high risk of having problems with their medicines. A hospital-based clinical pharmacist goes to the person’s home to review their medicines and help them understand their medicines. A report is also sent to the person’s GP, nominated community pharmacy and relevant specialist(s).

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Biosimilar awareness campaign consultation : 13/10/2015 :

The PBS Access and Sustainability Package, announced as part of the 2015 federal budget, includes funding to 'support the use and awareness of biosimilar medicines and ensure appropriate policies can be applied to provide market access and increase consumer choice and access and achieve the savings that can be gained from the use of these products'.

$20 million has been allocated over the period 2015-18 for awareness activities designed to improve awareness and confidence in biosimilar medicines, for both health professionals and consumers. 

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Too many medicines mistakes in children : 13/10/2015 :

With over 10,600 phone calls about accidental medicines exposures and 4,391 calls about dosing errors made to the NSW Poisons Information Centre in one year - all in children 0-14 years - NPS MedicineWise is reminding parents and carers during Be Medicinewise Week of the importance of being medicinewise with children.

Today Be Medicinewise Week ambassador Jimmy Rees (Jimmy Giggle from ‘Giggle and Hoot’ on ABC Kids) will be leading parents in Australia’s largest weigh in to raise awareness on the importance of dosing by age and weight to avoid accidental overdosing.

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Pharma industry leader, Dr Martin Cross, moves on : 13/10/2015 :

Medicines Australia Chairman, Dr Martin Cross, will leave the position at the end of his current Board term on 20 October 2015.

Dr Cross was appointed to the Board of Medicines Australia and made Chairman in 2013 after nearly 30 years in the global pharmaceutical industry including, immediately prior to the MA role, several years as Chairman of the Generic Medicines Industry Association.

A new Medicines Australia Board and Chair will be announced at the association’s Annual General Meeting on 20 October.

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New online learning resource helps pharmacists combat pharmaceutical drug misuse : 12/10/2015 :

As frontline healthcare professionals, pharmacists are well-positioned to contribute to reducing and preventing the misuse of pharmaceutical drugs and associated harms.

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RGH E‑Bulletin: An introduction to biosimilars : 12/10/2015 :

The topic of this week's RGH E‑Bulletin is An introduction to biosimilars.

"Most generic drug products available on the market are based on small molecules. However, there has been a recent increase in the use of large molecules that are sometimes referred to as biologics, a term that includes monoclonal antibodies and vaccines. These therapeutic proteins often have large, complex and heterogeneous molecular structures consisting of primary, secondary, tertiary and quaternary entities. There is a marked contrast with small molecules: for example, acetylsalicylic acid has a molecular weight of 180 Da, compared to the average molecular weight of monoclonal antibodies at150kDA."

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

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Toni Riley appointed new VPA Chair : 12/10/2015 :

Victorian community pharmacy owner Ms Toni Riley, pictured at right, has been appointed  Chairperson of the Victorian Authority. Ms Riley has been a pharmacist member of the Authority since October 2012 and succeeds Michael Scavone in the role.

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Be medicinewise at all ages and life stages : 12/10/2015 :

The 2015 Medicinewise Week starts today with this year's aim to remind Australians about the importance of using medicines safely and appropriately and to be medicinewise at all ages and life stages.

Throughout the week there will be promotional activity from NPS Medicinewise on the importance of using medicines at different ‘ages and life stages’, including when pregnant and breastfeeding, what to think about when you’re a teenager, when medicines become a regular part of life and medicines as you age.

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Latest global workforce report shows increase in pharmacist numbers : 09/10/2015 :

The number of pharmacists per 10,000 population has grown around the world, according to a new report from the International Pharmaceutical Federation Education Initiative (FIPEd).

The publication - Global pharmacy workforce intelligence: Trends report - was released at the recent 75th World Congress of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences. It is the fourth in a series of workforce reports produced every three years and contains a trend analysis of the three previous reports (2006, 2009, 2012), which covers 51 countries.

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