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AusPharm news

Panvax Junior goes off : 27/08/2010 :

Following stability testing by the TGA of the Panvax H1N1 2009 Junior vaccine, which showed a decline in potency in the Panvax supplied in 0.25 ml pre-filled syringes, the TGA has advised that all stocks of the vaccine for children supplied in 0.25 ml pre-filled syringes, should now be considered expired.

Panvax in multidose vials is not affected, nor are the trivalent seasonal influenza vaccines. The safety of the vaccine is also not affected.

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OTC codeine works for pharmacists : 27/08/2010 :

This week's poll asked 'listers whether they'd tried OTC codeine containing analgesics and, if yes, whether they'd found them more effective than plain paracetamol/ibuprofen.

Well yes, say over 2/3 of respondents, representing 78% of those who'd tried these products. If you allow for the 5-10% of the population said to be slow metabolisers (2D6 deficient), this produces a 'yes, this works' outcome approaching 90%.

Given that the evidence suggests codeine is ineffective in doses less than 30mg, what's going on here? Is the apparent efficacy of these products in our sample a placebo effect? Is the evidence flawed? Perhaps one of our academic 'listers might like to propose an explanation.

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A renewed approach to quitting smoking - being positive : 26/08/2010 :

QUIT Victoria is launching a new anti-smoking campaign that uses positive messages about quitting rather than focusing on the negative aspects of continuing to smoke.

The multi-media campaign focuses on encouraging quit attempts, recognising that the majority of smokers already want to quit but most of them will not manage to quit at the first attempt. Recent research from the Cancer Council of Victoria showed that 8 out of 10 Victorian smokers have tried to quit at least once, while more than half of Victorian smokers have tried to quit multiple times.

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SHPA conference early bird registration closes 3 Sept : 26/08/2010 :

Early bird registrations for this year's SHPA Medicines Management national conference close on 3 September. The conference will be held in Melbourne, 11-14 November, and has a diverse agenda covering:

Infection control - What can pharmacists and prescribers do to try and curb or re-emerging bacteria and viruses? Update your knowledge on resistance, re-emergence and viruses.

Living longer - pharmacy roles and challenges in keeping older people healthy longer.

Pain management in various settings

Broadening the profession - different career path options and the future of pharmacy.

Technician roles - how they have changed since the 1970s.

Register online at www.mm2010shpa.com.

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New NAPSA executive meet during Women's Pharmacy Congress : 26/08/2010 :

With support from the Guild, the new 2010/2011 executive of the National Australian Pharmacy Students’ Association met together for the first time at last weekend's Women's Pharmacy Congress, held in Hobart. 

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Clinical pharmacist educator needed for 12 months in Tonga : 26/08/2010 :

The Australian Youth Ambassadors for Development program is seeking a Clinical Pharmacist Educator for a 12 month placement in Tonga.

Being part of the youth program, the applicant must be under 30 years of age at the time of applying. Applications close on 10 September 2010. Full details can be found at http://www.ayad.com.au/assignments - search for the assignment number 30TOHE-A05.

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AusPharm CE: Cytochrome P450 interactions : 25/08/2010 :

The latest AusPharm CE topic is Cytochrome P450 interactions - it's been put together for us by Debbie Rigby.

"Cytochrome P450 (CYP450) enzymes metabolise most medications, and the most important of these enzymes are CYP1A2, CYP2C9, CYP2C19, CYP2D6, and CYP3A4. In determining the clinical significance of CYP interactions it is important to consider the binding affinity (Ki value), whether the drug is a pro-drug and requires metabolism to an active metabolite, and multiple metabolic pathways to determine the likely clinical significance of the interaction."

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 the sponsors of our CE program, MIMS.

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On the way to FIP 2010 : 25/08/2010 :

Bill Arnold's on his way to FIP 2010 in Lisbon and sent along these photos collected along the way.

"Santander Spain. One drop of blood, 5 minutes, all these answers.......

The pharmacy was closed, so I wasn't able to determine the cost."

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Medicines Australia awards scholarship for HPV vaccine research : 25/08/2010 :

The pharmaceutical industry association, Medicines Australia, has awarded a $15 000 HPV vaccine research scholarship to UNSW medical student, Dr Holly Seale.

Dr Seale will use the scholarship to research knowledge of the human papillomavirus (HPV) and attitudes towards HPV immunisation among young people with poor immune systems and their carers.

MA chief executive Dr Brendan Shaw said the aim of the scholarship was to advance research in an arena of public health that brings an enormous health benefit to all Australians.

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Independent patient information published on Januvia and Galvus : 25/08/2010 :

Two independent reviews on Januvia (sitagliptin) and Galvus (vildagliptin) have been published in plain language for type 2 diabetes patients, by the NPS.

The reviews appear in the August 2010 edition of Medicines Update, and explain who the medicines are suitable for, how they work, ways in which they differ from existing medicines for type 2 diabetes and possible side effects.

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Workshop on new technique of motivational interviewing of patients : 25/08/2010 :

Motivational interviewing techniques for helping patients manage behaviour or lifestyle changes to improve health outcomes will be workshopped at this year's PAC in Melbourne on Sat 30 October.

Motivational interviewing is a relatively new concept to pharmacy; it was originally developed in the early 1980s and has been adapted and used in many health-care settings, ranging from alcohol addiction to assisting with medication adherence.

 

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Poll: Personal experience with OTC codeine-containing analgesics : 25/08/2010 :

It's tough to ignore anecdotal evidence sometimes. Pharmacists, just as much as anyone else, have personal experience of how well analgesics work for them. Sometimes the effectiveness, or lack thereof, of a medicine from personal experience(s) is at odds with known evidence. This has been discussed recently on AusPharmlist with a number of pharmacists sharing their personal successes with various OTC pain relief products that the evidence or the authorities indicate does not warrant the indication.

AusPharm is curious to gauge the breadth of this type of "n=1" experience amongst pharmacists in using OTC codeine-containing compound analgesics rather than plain NSAIDS or paracetamol.

Vote in this week's poll to let us know whether you've used a combination OTC codeine analgesic and felt it to be more effective due to the codeine content.

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PHARMeFOOTY weekly wrap : 25/08/2010 :

NRL Round 24 saw just one tipster select all 8 winners correctly. Nhung Huynh of Torrens Road Gordon had the perfect round and wins the weekly prize, great work Nhung. In 2nd place was Kellie Baker from APHS with Paula Oliver of Hurstbridge taking 3rd spot.

AFL Round 21 went well for tipsters with 15 selecting all 8 winners. Tim Norton of David and Ingrid Norton's was closest to the margin and wins the weekly prize, well done Tim. In 2nd place was Paul Hunter from Creswick Pharmacy with Jack Cooper of Barry Dobyn Pharmacy in 3rd spot.

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Monash students win comp for pharmacy entrepreneurship : 24/08/2010 :

A team of four Monash University pharmacy students have pipped Griffith and Sydney Universities to win the final of the 2010 National Student Business Plan Competition.  A total of nine entries were received from pharmacy schools around Australia.

Held at the Pharmacy Women's Congress in Hobart last weekend, the team of Raymond Ngo, Paul Tran, John Lam and Timothy Ma convinced the judges and audience that their innovative business plan for the establishment or purchase of a pharmacy deserved financial support. Amongst their innovations was genetic testing for tailored solutions to chronic disease and weight loss treatments.

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Lewis Pounentis - PSA's South Australian Pharmacist of the Year 2010 : 24/08/2010 :

Mr Lewis Pounentis has been named PSA's South Australian Pharmacist of the Year, 2010.

A pharmacy proprietor with over 15 years community pharmacy experience, Mr Pounentis is renowned for providing all of his customers with the highest levels of customer service and advice on all health-related matters. He is also an accredited pharmacist and certified diabetes educator providing professional and compounding services to his local community.

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RGH E-Bulletin: Factors influencing anticoagulation with rivaroxaban : 23/08/2010 :

The topic of this week's RGH E‑Bulletin is Factors influencing anticoagulation with rivaroxaban.

"Rivaroxaban is an oral direct factor Xa inhibitor in advanced clinical development for the prevention and treatment of thromboembolic disorders. As clinical use increases for this new drug it is important to be aware of factors influencing its clearance and hence anticoagulant potency. This is particularly important in the early part of the clinical use of a new drug, as sponsored clinical trials may have inclusion and exclusion criteria that might tend to be selective for healthier patients."

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

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PBAC knocks back oxycodone / naloxone combo : 23/08/2010 :

Pharmacists involved in addiction care will be disappointed that, at its July meeting, the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC) rejected an application from Mundipharma for PBS listing of its oxycodone/naloxone combination product Targin.

The introduction of Targin into the Australia marketplace has great potential to reduce the morbidity associated with the injection of oxycodone products - adding naloxone (an opioid antagonist [Narcan]) to oxycodone means that if users inject the product it has no effect and may even precipitate withdrawal in users dependent on opioids.

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Australia hosts international pharmacy association leaders : 23/08/2010 :

Last week saw the annual meeting of, Pharmintercom, hosted by the Guild on the Gold Coast. Pharmintercom brings together the presidents and CEOs of 8 pharmacy associations from 7 countries to discuss community pharmacy practice and development of the profession. The members include:

  • Australia - Pharmacy Guild
  • Canada - Canadian Pharmacists Association
  • Ireland - Irish Pharmaceutical Union
  • New Zealand - Pharmacy Guild of NZ
  • South Africa - Community Pharmacist Sector of the Pharmaceutical Society of SA
  • UK - National Pharmaceutical Association and Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee
  • USA - National Community Pharmacists Association

Chaired by Kos Sclavos, the meeting consided strategic issues common to pharmacy around the world.

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Guide to buying & selling a pharmacy : 23/08/2010 :

The Pharmacy Guild has relaunched a fully revised version of its guide ‘Buying and Selling a Pharmacy: 7 steps to a highly effective sale or purchase'.

The companion resources 'One Hundred Days – From 100 days before to 100 days after your pharmacy purchase' and 'The Perilous Pitfalls of purchasing a pharmacy and how to avoid them’ are also available online.

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Blackmores continues to perform well : 20/08/2010 :

Vitamin and supplement manufacturer Blackmores yesterday announced a 17% increase in net profit for the year ending June 30 2010. The increase was on the back of a sales increase of 7% ($200 v $215 million). It is the eight consecutive year the company has delivered record sales and profits.

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