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AusPharm news

CHF: consumers support community pharmacy role in health : 26/03/2012 :

Responding to recent criticism levelled at it by the Pharmacy Guild, Consumers' Health Forum (CHF) CEO Carol Bennett maintains that CHF remains remains committed to the role of pharmacy in quality health care service.

Following the publication of an article critical of community pharmacy in last Thursday's Sydney Morning Herald which quoted Ms Bennett as saying the Guild "should concentrate on serving the best interests of Australian consumers rather than pharmacists' profits" the Guild released a statement saying that "Regrettably, the CHF has shown itself to be ideologically opposed to the community pharmacy model which has served Australian health consumers so well for so long."

 

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Pharmacists supportive of 'continued dispensing' : 23/03/2012 :

2/3 of the respondents to this week's AusPharm poll think that 'continued dispensing' will benefit patients with about half of these thinking that this will be a more useful initiative if other drug classes are added.

Only 8% of respondents expressed the view that 'continued dispensing' would go the way of some other professional programs trialed and quietly fade away. About 1/3 of respondents think the initiative unnecessary, there being enough 'emergency supply' options already.

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Registrations now open for NMS 2012; scholarship winner announced : 23/03/2012 :

Registrations are now open for the National Medicines Symposium (NMS), which is being held in Sydney from 24-25 May 2012. An early bird discount is being offered to those who register before 30 March.

This year's theme for the biennial event is 'Building a medicinewise community' and focuses on consumers at the centre of medicines use discussions. NMS brings together allied health professionals and other partners to Australia's National Medicines Policy, along with international representatives to learn, discuss and debate contemporary quality use of medicines issues.

 

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AusPharm CE: Issues around drug dosing in women who are breast feeding : 22/03/2012 :

The latest AusPharm CE topic is Issues around drug dosing in women who are breast feeding - it’s been put together for us by Ella van Tienen.

Breastfeeding is the best method of feeding infants in terms of cost, convenience and health benefits for both the infant and mother.1  Current recommendations suggest that in the absence of contraindications, women should exclusively breastfeed their infants for the first six months of life, and continue to breastfeed with complementary foods for up to two years. Many mothers are likely to need to take some form of medication during this time.

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SIGMA workers go back : 22/03/2012 :

SIGMA reached an agreement with striking workers at its Rowville warehouse that saw them return to work yesterday.

The company says its operations should be back to normal by next Monday (26 March).

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Comments sought on PCEHR Regulations and rules paper : 22/03/2012 :

The Department of Health and Ageing has released the Proposals for Regulations and Rules (proposals paper) for the eHealth records program.

The proposals paper helps explain the main rules and regulations which are proposed to be made to support the Personally Controlled Electronic Health Records Bill and Consequential Bill which are currently before Parliament. Comment is being sought on the proposals paper to help develop and refine the proposed rules and regulations which will govern the eHealth records program.

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Fairfax press continues attack on pharmacy : 22/03/2012 :

In a prominent article in today's Sydney Morning Herald, the paper accuses pharmacists of putting dollars before patients by, in effect, taking advantage of the discounts that will be available on generic versions of atorvastatin from April 1.

The article is highly critical of Pharmacy Guild advice to members, contained in a September 2011 'April 1 2012' fact sheet, to increase generic substitution rates in order to maintain dispensary profit.

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Apology : 21/03/2012 :

It has been brought to our attention that a post to AusPharmList yesterday included a phrase describing a female pharmacy professional which may have been inappropriate and may have caused offence.

AusPharm unreservedly apologises for any offence caused and has removed the phrase from the post in question.

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TGA warns consumers about the use of Black Salve in treating cancer : 21/03/2012 :

The TGA has issued a safety advisory warning consumers not to purchase or use products containing 'Black salve' saying that the use of such products in Australia has resulted in serious harm to the skin of three consumers who used the black salves for various skin conditions including the treatment of a skin cancer.

The TGA says it is not aware of any credible, scientific evidence which shows that any black or red salve preparation is effective in treating cancer.

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Going through the mill... : 21/03/2012 :

…is how consumers with mental illness, such as depression and anxiety, often report feeling.

Pharmacy staff can assist consumers and their carers and families, to manage their illness by using professional skills and knowledge to meet their needs. As noted by Australia’s Pharmacy Guild National President, Kos Sclavos – key to achieving the vision of Australia’s Mental Health Roadmap is recognising that supporting people with mental health illness to lead fulfilling lives is everyone’s business.

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NAPSA executive meets at APP : 21/03/2012 :

The Executive and Committee Chairs of the National Australian Pharmacy Students’ Association (NAPSA) met at the recent APP2102 conference on the Gold Coast.

NAPSA President Timothy Mizzi said that the event provided the NAPSA committee with an opportunity to meet face to face and to strengthen their partnerships with the Guild, the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia, Pharmaceutical Defence Limited, Australian Medicines Handbook, its secretariat the Australian College of Pharmacy and other organisations.

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CSO wholesalers confident for April 1 : 21/03/2012 :

CSO wholesalers say that, despite the surge in pharmacy orders expected on 1 April, they will be able to meet pharmacy's delivery demands on that day.

Many pharmacies will run down stocks prior to the PBS price reductions on April 1 and then place large orders on April 1. According to the wholesalers, the wave of orders will be a major test of the Community Service Obligation (CSO) Agreement which requires wholesalers to deliver the full range of more than 6,000 PBS medicines anywhere in Australia within 24 hours in return for their chunk of the CSO.

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New IP legislation will encourage medical research : 21/03/2012 :

New legislation overhauling Australia’s patent system will encourage medical research and bring Australia into line with intellectual property systems in other OECD countries Medicines Australia chief executive Dr Brendan Shaw said yesterday.

The Raising the Bar Bill, which was finally passed in Federal Parliament last night, introduces a “research use exemption” which will allow scientists to conduct research on patented inventions without infringing those patents.

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Poll: continued dispensing, a good thing? : 21/03/2012 :

The legislation underpinning the 5th Agreement 'continued dispensing' initiative recently passed through parliament and was hailed by stakeholders.

At APP2012 Health Minister Plibersek said the initiative was 'good for patients' and the Guild said that the passage of the legislation would mean that 'all Australian health care consumers will benefit'. Guild President, Kos Sclavos, said: 'Pharmacists always have the highest regard for their close working relationships with doctors, and the Guild is confident this limited measure will ensure the best outcomes for patients.'

What do you think? Is this a win for patients? Or is it all hype? Please let us know by voting in today's AusPharm poll.

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CPExpo signals beginning of new CPD paradigm : 20/03/2012 :

The opportunity to participate in an exciting new era in pharmacy professional development and practice support is a step closer with the opening of registrations for the Clinical and Practice Expo (CPExpo).
 
In a strategic decision, CPExpo moves away from the traditional trade exhibit model style event.  The decision was made based on member feedback that this type of format was not meeting their needs.  CPExpo therefore aims to enhance the educational and practice experience through incorporating an integrated learning space as part of the event.

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Consultation on advanced pharmacy practice : 20/03/2012 :

The Advanced Pharmacy Practice Framework Steering Committee (APPFSC) is a profession-wide collaborative forum, working on initiatives which are linked to the national competency standards for pharmacists.

The APPFSC, chaired by Dr Shane Jackson, has released a Consultation Paper on Advanced Pharmacy Practice and is inviting members of the pharmacy profession to provide comment.

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Guild: pharmacies will ensure continuity of supply : 20/03/2012 :

Community pharmacies and the broader pharmaceutical industry are working together to ensure continuity of supply of PBS listed medicines at the time of significant price changes on 1 April, says the Pharmacy Guild. Its comments are in response to media reports that medical groups have accused pharmacies of abrogating their professional responsibilities on supply for commercial reasons.  

Price reductions for many PBS medicines to take place on 1 April have created stock management challenges for all pharmacies, wholesalers, and manufacturers.

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Protest at Chemist Warehouse(s) in solidarity with striking Sigma workers : 19/03/2012 :

A group of students from Monash University last week staged a protest in a Chemist Warehouse store in support of striking National Union of Workers members.

Sigma employees and the union are currently locked in battle over working conditions with wholesaler Sigma at its Rowville warehouse.

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April 2012 PBS schedule : 19/03/2012 :

The April PBS Schedule is now available

Download the Full PBS schedule

Download the PBS Summary of changes

Download the Efficient Funding of Chemotherapy – S100 Arrangements Supplement

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RGH E-Bulletin: Preadmission clinic pharmacy services : 19/03/2012 :

The topic of this week's RGH E‑Bulletin is Preadmission clinic pharmacy services.

"In an effort to reduce the potential for in-hospital drug-related problems, RGH and many other hospitals have established a preadmission clinic (PAC) patients are assessed prior to admission for elective surgery. This approach has now become a routine service at RGH, aiming to provide anaesthetic and surgical assessments of patients prior to surgery. The clinic serves as an opportunity to educate patients, to allow access to allied health professionals, to obtain patient information relevant to the surgery, to anticipate any problems and to plan for a smooth discharge"

Click here to read the bulletin in full. The E‑Bulletins are archived on the AusPharmList website here.RGH E-Bulletin: Clostridium Difficile Associated Diarrhoea (CDAD) & PPIs

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