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AusPharm news

PHARMeFOOTY weekly wrap : 15/06/2011 :

AFL Round 12
 
AFL Round 12 was very good for tippers with 159 selecting all 8 winners. The result came down to cumulative margin with Craig Fox from Judges Pharmacy taking first place. In 2nd spot was Margaret Tolar with Peter Balram of Wesley Hospital finishing in 3rd position.

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Student sets up online petition opposing the SOL listing of pharmacists : 15/06/2011 :

In response to last week's news that pharmacists are to be *added* to the Department of Immigration and Citizenship's Skilled Occupation List (SOL)** from 1 July 2011 a final year pharmacy student from Charles Sturt University has launched an online petition opposing the move.

The petition's preamble claims that the current high level of pharmacy graduate numbers in Australia is creating a situation where skilled health professionals are being paid less than those who work at fast food outlets and advocates for pharmacy graduates' right to employment.

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Caution needed with medicine doses for children : 15/06/2011 :

Responding to media reports over the weekend on the dangers of paracetamol double dosing, the Australian Self-Medication Industry (ASMI) issued a statement yesterday urging parents and carers to take extra care when measuring and medicating children for fever, coughs and colds. ASMI was responding to media reports on comments from the NSW Poisons Information Centre about parents incorrectly calculating the appropriate dosing of medication for children, particularly in regard to paracetamol.

ASMI Regulatory and Scientific Affairs Director, Steven Scarff said that because different medications may be used at different doses it is important for parents to check the dosing guidelines on the pack of each medication before it is used.

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A big flu season ahead? : 15/06/2011 :

Year on year data from Project STOP suggests that the 2011 winter might be a bad one for colds and flu.

Reinforcing Health Department warnings that reported cases of influenza have increased 400 per cent compared to 2010, data collected through Project STOP shows that demand for cold and flu medications was increasing as far back as early April, indicating an early arrival of the cold and flu season.

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Poll: Are community pharmacists really healthcare professionals? : 15/06/2011 :

There is always debate amongst pharmacists and the public about whether community pharmacists are true 'health care professionals' or are merely glorified shopkeepers.

Some say that the growth of the discount pharmacy model has more and more consumers seeing community pharmacies simply as shops rather than as health care destinations.

What do you think? Please let us know by voting in the week's AusPharm poll.

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Owners positive about FOS pharmacist concept : 14/06/2011 :

Our 'minipoll' conducted over the long weekend suggests that pharmacy owners are prepared to embrace the front of shop (FOS) pharmacist concept overwhelmingly endorsed by 'listers in last week's poll.

Our weekend poll suggests that 2/3 of owners are considering employing an additional FOS pharmacist within the next 12 months. Most of the remaining one third said that their pharmacies were too small.

As Peter Dishington eloquently puts it in an AusPharmList post today; "Bring it on. The industry needs to find a way for this kind of idea to work before all the talent leaves for more rewarding careers."

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10% put off having scripts dispensed due to cost : 14/06/2011 :

Nationally in 2009, almost one in ten people aged 15 years and over who had been prescribed medication deferred purchasing this medication due to its cost. The data is included in a new AIHW report, The National Healthcare Agreement: Performance report for 2009-10, released last week.

The report discloses that those people significantly more likely to defer buying prescribed medications were:

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Aussie men could take better care of themselves : 14/06/2011 :

While Australia continues to enjoy improvements in health and life expectancy, statistics released today by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) show many Australian men could be doing more to protect and improve their health.

The report, The health of Australia’s males, examines attitudes to health issues, rates of injury, illness and mortality and use of health services among Australian men.

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Flexibility in initiating RMMRs essential : 14/06/2011 :

Changes to the Residential Medication Management Review (RMMR) Program which stipulate that in future all reviews must be collaborative could have the unintended consequence of reducing flexibility in the system, the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia says.

National President of the PSA, Warwick Plunkett, pictured right, said that while PSA supported the broad thrust of the changes, it was concerned that  the apparent cessation of pharmacist-initiated reviews could be detrimental to the health outcomes of patients.

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Summary of Medication Review changes : 14/06/2011 :

As we reported last week, changes to the Home Medicines Review (HMR) and Residential Medication Management Review (RMMR) models were announced by AACP Chair Debbie Rigby at the annual AACP conference, ConPharm, held in Darwin last week.

Fact sheets for RMMRs and HMRs are now available on the 5th Community Pharmacy Agreement website.

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AACP Pfizer Consultant Pharmacist of the Year 2011 : 14/06/2011 :

Accredited pharmacist Paul Hannan has been named as the recipient of the 2011 AACP Pfizer Consultant Pharmacist of the Year Award at the AACP’s annual seminar ConPharm ’11 currently being held in Darwin.

The aim of this annual award is to recognise the outstanding contribution by an accredited pharmacist to the practice of consultant pharmacy. The award includes a medallion and certificate, plus a travel grant to the value of $10,000 to attend an international pharmacy conference of relevance to the practice of consultant pharmacy.

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RGH E-Bulletin: Prophylaxis against recurrent urinary tract infections : 14/06/2011 :

The topic of this week's RGH E‑Bulletin is Prophylaxis against recurrent urinary tract infections.

"Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are a common problem, with up to one in three women and one in twenty men developing a UTI in their lifetime. They can become a significant healthcare burden, especially if left untreated, often presenting with symptoms such as fever, dysuria, frequency and lethargy. Recurrent UTIs are defined as two or more episodes within six months or three or more episodes within 12 months. Prophylactic options for recurrent UTIs include antibiotic therapy and other alternatives."

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

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Pharmacists support FOS pharmacist concept : 10/06/2011 :

This week's poll asked 'listers whether they thought front of shop pharmacists, employed to 'to engage customers, solve primary and minor problems and solution sell health related lines and services' was a concept worth pursuing.

Yes, say a large majority of pharmacists, although about 1/3 of respondents think the idea would only be workable in larger pharmacies.

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Pharmacists back on Skilled Occupation List from July 1. Eh? : 10/06/2011 :

Pharmacists are one of 13 occupations being added to The Skilled Occupation List (SOL) from 1 July 2011.

The SOL determines which occupations are eligible for independent or unsponsored skilled migration.

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MIMS Monthly Medicine Update : 10/06/2011 :

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

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SIGMA: 'debtor days' down to 77 : 09/06/2011 :

At the Sigma Pharmaceuticals Annual General Meeting yesterday the company reported that, despite the challenging business environment of the last year, Sigma's core business has remained sound and strong.

CEO Mark Hooper said that 2011 YTD business had been strong and that the company had picked up market share. He told shareholders that changes to pharmacy trading terms had largely counteracted the impact of the loss of Pfizer's business on company profits adding, however, that 'debtor days' still stood at 77 (was 92) and that this was still unacceptable.

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HMR pharmacists score a win : 09/06/2011 :

Commencing October 1, 2011 accredited medication review pharmacists will be able to receive HMR referrals directly from  the patient's doctor. To date, the only referral pathway allowed by the business rules has been through the patient's community pharmacy of choice.

The news was widely welcomed by pharmacists yesterday. AACP Chair Debbie Rigby said: "While I support the current model of HMRs through community pharmacies and believe it will remain a valuable component of this service, I see the increased flexibility offered by these changes as maturation of the profession. It is time to release individual accredited pharmacists to innovate their own business models to align with general practitioner and consumer expectations."

PSA President Warwick Plunkett said: "These changes generally represent a long overdue win for independent accredited pharmacists who have been hampered in the past by the inability of a doctor to refer a HMR to them to perform.  The changes could dramatically alter the way medication reviews are delivered in the future, which will complement existing community services".

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DD Book: a new electronic narcotic register : 08/06/2011 :

Pharmacists are required to maintain accurate and detailed records of all transactions involving S8 medications and have traditionally recorded these in a paper based narcotic register.

DD Book is a software application that allows computerisation of this  register.

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Poll: front of shop pharmacists : 08/06/2011 :

In a post to AusPharmList today, pharmacy business consultant Bruce Annabel suggests that the 'old' model of community pharmacy practice that sees multiple pharmacists in and around the dispensary, still employed by many pharmacies, is well past its use by date.

He advocates for a new model that would see pharmacists employed ' to engage customers, solve primary and minor problems and solution sell health related lines plus services such as DAA, soon to be available MUR, blood pressure, compliance etc.'

How does this sound to you? Please let us know by voting in this week's AusPharm poll.

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PHARMeFOOTY weekly wrap : 08/06/2011 :

AFL Round 11
 
AFL Round 11 saw 14 tippers select all the 8 winners. Sue Nguyen had the best margin tip and is this weeks winner. In 2nd place was Chris Colley from Findlay & Weymouth with Fiona Feehan of Eltham Chemmart in 3rd position.

NRL Round 13

NRL Round 13 saw 6 tippers pick all the 8 winners correctly. David Bulley from Priceline Pharmacy had the best margin tip and wins the weekly prize. Patrick Devine from Midtown Pharmacy was in 2nd place with Patti Davies of Medicross Pharmacy Ipswich in 3rd position.

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