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AusPharm news

Guild: Community pharmacy QUM program can reduce medication related hospital admissions : 08/09/2015 :

The Pharmacy Guild has responded to research published yesterday in the Medical Journal of Australia which found over a quarter of hospitalisations of older Australians may be caused by poor medication-related processes of care before admission by saying the finding confirms the potential for community pharmacies to make a significant contribution to reducing the cost of unnecessary hospitalisations.

The  Guild says the study builds on the strong evidence that adverse medicine events account for thousands of hospital admissions per year and has called for a coordinated community based quality use of medicines program to be funded to address the issue.

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Pharmacy paracetamol sales 'the weakest link' in poisonings : 08/09/2015 :

Professor Nicholas Buckley, a professor of clinical pharmacology at the University of Sydney, believes the current “lack of controls on pharmacy sales is the weakest link in Australian regulation in terms of preventing poisoning”.

MJA Insight yesterday reported
Professor Buckley's comments that the cheapest paracetamol tablets and the largest pack sizes are found in pharmacies 'particularly discount pharmacies where boxes of 100 tablets were available for less than $2'.

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Twomey honoured : 08/09/2015 :

Queensland pharmacist Trent Twomey was yesterday honoured with an 'Outstanding Alumni' award from James Cook University for his 'outstanding contribution at a local, state, national and / or international level'.

Mr Twomey is best known in pharmacy circles as a current Pharmacy Guild National Councillor and a former President of both the Australian College of Pharmacy and the National Australia Pharmacy Student's Association.
 
He is the current Chairman of the North Queensland Primary Healthcare Network and Chairman of Advance Cairns, among other roles.

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RGH E‑Bulletin: Gliptins and heart failure : 07/09/2015 :

The topic of this week's RGH E‑Bulletin is Gliptins and heart failure.

"Dipeptidyl-peptidase 4 (DPP-4) inhibitors, or gliptins, have become a popular choice for treatment of type 2 diabetes. There are currently five different DPP4 inhibitors registered in Australia, four of which have FDA approval (sitagliptin, saxagliptin, linagliptin and aloglitpin). The side effect profile of these medications is of particular interest, being a relatively new class of medication, and the first class of oral diabetic medications to enter the market since the postmarketing cardiac safety concerns with rosiglitazone and pioglitazone. In 2008, the FDA mandated that new diabetic medications undergo rigorous evaluation to determine potential cardiac risks. As a result, multiple safety trials have been developed to elucidate the safety of the gliptins."

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

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Sub optimal drug therapies costing Aussies $300 million a year : 07/09/2015 :

Over a quarter of hospitalisations of older Australians may be caused by poor medication-related processes of care before admission, at an annual cost of $300 million, according to new research published today in the Medical Journal of Australia.

Dr Gillian Caughey and colleagues from the University of South Australia and the BUPA Health Foundation used data from the Department of Veterans’ Affairs from between July 2007 and June 2012, to assess the prevalence of suboptimal medication-related processes of care before hospitalisation of 83,430 older patients.

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PBS Opioids Roundtable focuses on regulation and QUM : 07/09/2015 :

An opioids 'Roundtable', held in Canberra in May 2015 as part of the Post-market Review of Authority Required Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme Listings, has recommended attempts be made to reduce the current regulatory burden on prescribers, provided any relaxation of regulatory control does make it easier for patients to obtain, and thereby potentially misuse, opioids.

An ‘Outcomes Statement’ published on Friday flagged an online authority system as one way to reduce regulatory burden with the added benefit that such a system could include prompts to encourage quality use of opioids, and mandatory data fields to assist with data collection and inform policy development.

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Court finds WA man guilty of 'holding out' as a pharmacist : 07/09/2015 :

A man who dispensed medications to patients when he was not a registered pharmacist has been convicted of ‘holding himself out’ as a registered pharmacist.

AHPRA prosecuted Mr Amer Ahmed under s116 of the National Law, for ‘holding himself out’ as a registered pharmacist when he was not registered.

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Call for applications for appointment to the Notifications Committee of the Pharmacy Board of Australia : 07/09/2015 :

The Pharmacy Board of Australia is seeking expressions of interest from pharmacists for appointment to its Notifications Committee.

Expressions of interest are sought from pharmacists in all jurisdictions except New South Wales, who look after their own notifications.

The main function of the Committee (in plain English) is to consider complaints registered with AHPRA against pharmacists.

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Pharmacy Board to interns - get your intern placement approved in advance : 04/09/2015 :

The Pharmacy Board has reminded intern pharmacists that they need to obtain the Board’s approval of their supervised practice arrangements BEFORE commencing their intern year.

The Board disclosed yesterday it had dealt with 16 registration applicantions from intern pharmacists who had not done this and had,  therefore, not complied with the Board's Supervised practice arrangements registration standard, putting them at risk of not meeting the requirements for general registration.

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Plain English pharmacy award on the way : 04/09/2015 :

The Pharmacy Industry Award 2010 has been selected by the Fair Work Commission for a pilot project to look at how a modern award can be written in plain language.

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Waughs spruik Blooms Stroke Risk Assessment service : 04/09/2015 :

Former Australian cricket captain Steve Waugh and his wife Lynette are working with Blooms the Chemist to  champion public awareness of stroke and its often fatal consequences during Stroke Risk Awareness Month (September).

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Pharmacists take their CPD responsibilities seriously : 04/09/2015 :

The results of this week's AusPharm poll suggest that pharmacists take their professional development responsibilities very seriously indeed.

In order to meet the Pharmacy Board's CPD registration standard for the year ended 30 September 2015 pharmacists are required to obtain 40 CPD credits, not more than half of which are group 1 credits.

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Pharmacists registration fees set : 03/09/2015 :

Pharmacy Board registration fees have been set at $320 for 2015/16 - a rise of $3.00 on this year.

The Board says it is funded by pharmacists’ registration fees and the decision to limit the increase to $3.00 'ensures pharmacists are not unduly burdened, but still provides sufficient income to allow the Board to meet its obligations in protecting the public'.

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MMR Stage 1 course now available online from PSA : 03/09/2015 :

Pharmacists wanting to take the first step towards gaining accreditation for the delivery of Medication Management Reviews (MMRs) as an accredited pharmacist now have a unique opportunity to pursue this career path through new online resources provided by the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia.

The importance of MMRs was recently highlighted in a landmark study on the impact of medication reviews in Australia.

The study highlighted the benefits of such services and found they are valuable in identifying medication-related problems, improving medication adherence, reducing hospitalisations and minimising the use of potentially inappropriate medications.

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AusPharm CE: RGH Pharmacy E-Bulletin Digest Issue No.85 : 03/09/2015 :

The next in our 2015 series of continuing professional development activities is the RGH E-Bulletin Digest No. 85.

This CPD activity assesses your understanding of four recent RGH Pharmacy E-Bulletins, Volumes 58-12→59-3 (June 2015).

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New Board guidelines issued : 03/09/2015 :

The Pharmacy Board of Australia yesterday urged pharmacists to review several revised guidelines for pharmacists it has issued in advance of their taking effect on 7 December.

Commenting on the new guidelines yesterday, Board Chair Bill Kelly said pharmacists are expected to review the new guidelines and familiarise themselves with all changes to ensure they comply in their practice from 7 December.

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PHARMACISTS – NEED TO CATCH UP ON CPD? : 02/09/2015 :

As the end of the Continuing Professional Development (CPD) year fast approaches, NPS MedicineWise offers a wide range of free activities that provide high quality, current content relevant to pharmacy practices in Australia.

Participating in an NPS MedicineWise evidence-based activity assists pharmacists and pharmacy interns in the provision of quality patient care and quality use of medicines in the community.

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New draft competency standards imminent : 02/09/2015 :

The Pharmacy Practitioner Development Committee (PPDC) said last week that its work progressing the review of the National competency standards framework for pharmacists in Australia is continuing.

The standards from An advanced pharmacy practice framework for Australia are being integrated into the revised competency standards in order to create a single competency framework for pharmacists showing a clear practice continuum.

The Committee expects to circulate a consultation draft of the new standards framework late in 2015. The draft will, in the first instance, be circulated to PPDC Member organisations.

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Poll: CPD - how are you tracking as 30 September approaches? : 02/09/2015 :

To satisfy Pharmacy Board CPD requirements pharmacists are required to complete continuing professional development activities to the value of 40 CPD credits for the year ending September 30 (soon!).

How are you tracking towards this? Are you there already with lots of credits to spare or struggling to find the time or motivation to do it?

Please let us know by voting in this week's AusPharm poll.

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Study highlights need for pharmacist counselling on paracetamol dosing : 02/09/2015 :

A new study from the University of Wollongong has highlighted the need for health professionals - especially pharmacists and pharmacy staff -  to educate consumers about how to identify the active ingredients, the maximum dosage and the potential for side effects associated with taking pharmaceutical products containing paracetamol.

The study, published in the Journal of Pharmacy Practice and Research, surveyed 254 patients with arthritis asking them about their prescription and over-the-counter pain medications; their medication borrowing and sharing behaviours; their functional health literacy; and their knowledge about preparations containing paracetamol as an active ingredient.

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