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AusPharm news

And the winner is ...... : 21/06/2010 :

Thanks to all those who sent in entries to our caption contest last week.

Here are some of the best ones.

Mike Hobbs: To sleep or not to sleep, that is the question.

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'Counterfeit' V*agra enters the official supply chain : 21/06/2010 :

'Listers in community pharmacies may have seen the fax from V*agra manufacturer Pfizer on Thursday evening alerting them to the fact that Symbion had 'unintentionally sourced and distributed' a batch of 'non-genuine' V*agra.

Guild members received further (TGA) advice on Saturday that the batch in question (B/N 314 833 021) was, in fact, 'counterfeit' and that pharmacies should quarantine stock and/or follow advice already received from Symbion. As of this morning (21/6) there was nothing on the TGA or Pfizer websites about this.

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Concerns over administration of paid parental leave scheme : 21/06/2010 :

The Pharmacy Guild put out a statement on Friday welcoming the passage of paid parental leave legislation through parliament but said it had concerns over its administration.

The Guild says it acknowledges the scheme is an important taxpayer funded social reform that has strong bi-partisan and community support and that its time has well and truly come. However, it says it is disappointed that the scheme will be administered through small business, including pharmacy. It  maintains that the paymaster function of the scheme should be fully administered by government, through the Family Assistance Office, with no requirement for employers to administer payments.

The Guild says it will also monitor the resolution of outstanding on-cost issues, such as those associated with workers compensation and payroll taxes.

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RGH E-Bulletin: Revised guidelines for colchicine dosing in acute gout. : 21/06/2010 :

The topic of this RGH E‑Bulletin is Revised guidelines for colchicine dosing in acute gout.

"Gout is the most common form of inflammatory arthritis. In acute gout, uric acid crystals are deposited in affected joints causing an inflammatory reaction with pain, swelling and joint damage. Current treatment options for acute gout include non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS), intra-articular or system ic corticosteroids and colchicine."

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

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PHARMeFOOTY weekly wrap : 18/06/2010 :

UPDATED! NRL Round 14 saw Qld triumph in game two of the State of Origin, and accordingly the top three tippers for the round are all from Qld. Keith Strain of Strain Pharmacy came out on top, with David Wilkinson in second place, and Michael Collins of Collins Pharmacy in third.

AFL Round 12 saw only two tippers select the eight. Nathan Zuccala of Bayne and Friend Pharmacy takes out the weekly prize selecting a closer margin over second place Gavin Flett from HPS Pharmacies. Heather Clarke from Pharmasave Yarrawonga came in third.

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Poll: who does the banking : 18/06/2010 :

This week's poll was a follow up to the sad death of a security guard in Sydney last week. It asked 'listers to tell us how they do their banking.

While the results are unremarkable, the poll did get some people thinking about the procedures with 19% choosing the we bank "unsafely, thanks for alerting us to this" option.

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Pharmacy owners must meet all registration standards : 18/06/2010 :

The Pharmacy Board of Australia has released an account of issues covered at its May meeting and, while much of it is routine, involving administrative issues associated with the introduction of national registration on July 1, there are a few items that will make some pharmacists sit up and take notice.

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July 2010 PBS schedule : 18/06/2010 :

The July PBS schedule and 'Summary of Changes' are now available here.

Download the Full PBS schedule

Download the Summary of changes

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New CEO for Sigma : 17/06/2010 :

Sigma Pharmaceuticals announced yesterday that it had appointed Mark Hooper as its new CEO to replace outgoing CEO Elmo de Alwis who resigned from the role earlier this year in the wake of poor recent financial results.

Mr Hooper was Chief Financial Officer (CFO) for the company from 2001-2006. From 2006-2008 Mr Hooper was CFO at Symbion Health and Chief Operating Officer for Symbion's consumer and pharmacy divisions.

According to Sigma Chairman John Stocker, Mr Hooper will "hit the ground running" because of his "deep knowledge of the company and the industry".

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PHARMeFOOTY weekly wrap : 16/06/2010 :

AFL Round 12 saw only two tippers select the eight. Nathan Zuccala of Bayne and Friend Pharmacy takes out the weekly prize selecting a closer margin over second place Gavin Flett from HPS Pharmacies. Heather Clarke from Pharmasave Yarrawonga came in third.

NRL Round 14 continues tonight with the second State of Origin clash, so tipping results are not available at this time.

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Webstercare June Newsletter : 16/06/2010 :

Every second month our friends at Webstercare produce a newsletter that is distributed to all aged care homes throughout Australia. They've kindly agreed to make it available to pharmacists too, through AusPharm.

The latest edition (June) contains:

  • Medication Charts as the Prescription: This breakthrough means elimination of transcription errors and improved patient safety
  • Glaucoma: June's Continuing Education deals with this eye disorder that affects 15% of people by the age of 60
  • Webster-pak LV: Developed in consultation with Vision Australia, Webster-pak LV makes it easier for people with low vision to take their medication correctly
  • Next Generation Concertina Blisters: You can press tablets through the foil backing with half the usual effort

Click here to download the June Webstercare newsletter in full (637kb pdf). Click here if you have any feedback, suggestions or queries about the newsletter.

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Poll: who does the banking? : 16/06/2010 :

The shooting (dead!) of a Chubb security guard in Sydney last week struck a bit of a chord for AusPharm.

In our travels as a locum since selling our pharmacy a few years back, we've been stunned by the fact that many pharmacies send massive amounts of cash to the bank with a single unaccompanied employee, usually female, more often than not young and slightly built, almost always with a bag that LOOKS as if it is full of cash/coin.

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Early Career Pharmacists Working Group elects new chair : 16/06/2010 :

Queensland pharmacist Justin Lee has been appointed chair of the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia’s Early Career Pharmacists Working Group.

The group, entering its second year, was established to give a greater focus on pharmacists in the early stages of their career and to address some of the particular issues facing early career pharmacists.

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Drug Action Week Launched In Canberra : 16/06/2010 :

Drug Action Week 2010 was launched yesterday by the Parliamentary Secretary for Health, Mark Butler, at Campbell High School in the ACT.

Drug Action Week 2010 is an initiative of the Alcohol and other Drugs Council of Australia, with funding support from the Australian Government. It provides individuals, organisations, and communities with the opportunity to promote awareness of the harms of alcohol and other drugs.

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Griffith Uni pharmacy students trained in Mirixa : 15/06/2010 :

As part of their course work this year, Griffith University pharmacy students have been trained to use the Mirixa Australia programs.

According to Dr Laetitia Hatitingh, Senior Lecturer & MPharm Convenor for the Pharmacy School the aim its program is to produce work-ready students who will benefit individual pharmacies and the profession as a whole.  “At Griffith University we equip our students with new technology and tools that focus on the integration of patient care services into everyday practice.  The Mirixa Australia training helped us achieve this.”

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Pharmacy Board rethinks requirement for compulsory personal professional indemnity insurance : 15/06/2010 :

Following feedback from the Australian Health Workforce Ministerial Council - the body overseeing implementation of the national registration of pharmacists and other heath professionals - the Pharmacy Board of Australia has released a revised standard for Professional Indemnity Insurance (PII) that removes the requirement for all pharmacists to hold PII in their own name.

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CPA5 briefing online : 15/06/2010 :

The Pharmacy Guild has placed a member only multi-media (video and powerpoint) presentation on the Fifth Community Pharmacy Agreement on its website.

The presentation, by National President Kos Sclavos, was produced for the benefit of Guild members who were unable to attend any of the live roadshows conducted around Australia.

(Guild members) watch it here.

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Sweet dreams (not?) caption competition : 15/06/2010 :

This photograph, taken in a Coles supermarket, was sent in to us by long-time contributor Kevin de Vries.

AusPharm has reached into its prize bag and has one of our select, limited edition 4GB flash drives  to give away to the subscriber who comes up with the best caption for this photo. (Click the image to see a larger version).

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RGH E-Bulletin: Update on restless legs syndrome : 15/06/2010 :

The topic of this RGH E‑Bulletin is Update on restless legs syndrome.

"Restless legs syndrome (RLS) is an important cause of poor sleep quality. The criteria for diagnosis of RLS are as follows:

  • an urge to move the legs, accompanied or caused by uncomfortable unpleasant sensations in the legs
  • the urge to move, or unpleasant sensations beginning or worsening during periods of inactivity, such as sitting or lying
  • the urge to move or unpleasant sensations partially or totally relieved by movement such as walking or stretching
  • the urge to move or unpleasant sensations worsening or only occurring in the evening or night."

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

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Union weighs in on pharmacist / tech ratio : 15/06/2010 :

Employee pharmacist union PDA weighed into the debate on pharmacist / dispensing tech ratio over the weekend, with PDA president Geoff March saying that  "consumers deserve to get value for money for their taxes spent on prescription dispensing fees - they should expect to be counselled and offered a CMI by their pharmacist."

The union pointed out that the Pharmacy Board of Australia's proposed guideline has been in operation in Victoria for a number of years without any impact on business viability and says it is disappointing the Pharmacy Guild is trying to have the guidelines deferred.

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