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AusPharm news

Sausages: the way forward : 06/11/2006 :

There has been quite of lot of discussion on AusPharmList recently prompted by Ron Batagol's AusPharm article of a fortnight ago, Churning out scripts like a string of sausages creates a health hazard but who really cares?

Feedback continues to roll in and AusPharm has a series of follow up features focusing on related themes and will be publishing these over the next couple of weeks. We have one from Wendy Morton, one from Curtin University 3rd year pharmacy student Archana Haria and a cracker from AusPharm's pearlcaster and 'frequent poster' Peter Allen.

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Should our pharmacy organisations be more 'socially' active? : 06/11/2006 :

In yesterday's (e)news we ran an Australian Nursing Federation media statement on climate change. While this clearly has health implications it would seem to be slightly off to the side as a 'nursing' issue. AusPharmers would also be aware that the AMA is vocal in many areas, not all of which are directly related to health. On the other hand, Australian Pharmacy organisations tend to be silent on 'social' issues. Should they be more outspoken? Please let us know what you think by participating in the week's AusPharm, poll (below).

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All community pharmacies should have a 'Dependency Care' category : 03/11/2006 :





Maybe, or so say AusPharmers. Twice as many respondents to this week's AusPharm poll answered yes to this question rather than no (56% vs 27%) with a fairly high proportion (17%) undecided.

However, the low number of respondents (only one third as many for last week's poll at 84 vs 233) suggests that this isn't an issue that's on the minds of too many AusPharmers.

Post a comment to AusPharmList.

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API explains : 02/11/2006 :

API CEO Stephen Roche faxed some of API's customers yesterday making the point that at the time the API share price kicked on Monday API were unaware of the pending (upgraded) offer from SIGMA.

"At about 2pm yesterday a Dow Jones article citing (sic) a market source that API would receive a further takeover offer at $2.72, and we were then asked to make a statement to the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) on that matter and we advised that we were unaware of any further offer. At this time Sigma denied that they were putting forward another bid."

Also copied below is a further announcement to the ASX from API pointing out that API's major shareholders have NOT reached any agreement with API.

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SIGMA issues Safety Alert Notice : 02/11/2006 :

Sigma Pharmaceuticals Ltd wishes to advise of infrequent defects in some 30 mL amber glass bottles containing tablets. There have been some isolated instances of bottle moulding defects. In some cases, easily identifiable amber glass fragments have been found in bottles.

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SIGMA increases offer for API : 01/11/2006 :

At about 2PM yesterday the API share price kicked from $2.48 to $2.68 in the space of about 10 minutes. By 4.00PM it had dropped back to $2.60 before settling at $2.62 at close of trading for the day.

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Do community pharmacies need a 'Dependency Care' category? : 01/11/2006 :

In his article published on AusPharm yesterday Jack Zufi suggested that pharmacy should develop a 'new' category of 'Dependency Care' to assist patients with dependency issues.

AusPharm agrees with this and believes there is an opportunity for vastly more pharmacies than is presently the case to introduce such a category into their pharmacies. What do you think? Please let us know in today's AusPharm poll (below).

Post a comment to AusPharmList.

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Coversyl reformulation raises issues of concern: PSA : 30/10/2006 :

The reformulation of the popular blood-pressure medication Coversyl has raised some issues of concern to the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia.

PSA President Brian Grogan said: "Pharmacists have been expressing concerns about the changeover generating confusion and the potential for misadventure. PSA members have told us of patient confusion over the changeover to the new formulation as well one report of misadventure in a hospital setting due to substitution of the old version for the new version, without the necessary adjustment to dosage."

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Results of pharmacist workload poll : 27/10/2006 :





This weeks poll must have struck a chord with AusPharmers as 233 people were moved to cast their vote this week. In response to the question 'Pharmacy Boards should set mandatory standards for maximum pharmacist workloads:" 60% of respondents though that they should. Four out of the 5 people in the 40% who disagreed did so because they thought the logistics too difficult. This result suggests that there is good support amongst pharmacists for more direction on the from the Boards than is presently the case.

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Pharmacists congratulated for role in combating illegal drugs : 24/10/2006 :

Queensland Police Minister, Judy Spence (pictured right), has congratulated the Pharmacy Guild of Australia on its efforts in helping combat the illegal manufacturing of pseudoephedrine-based drugs.

Opening the 10th National Precursor Diversion Congress on the Gold Coast, Ms Spence thanked the Queensland Branch of the Pharmacy Guild for its initiative in developing Project STOP and for the impressive results it has produced.

"The Beattie Government takes a hard line on drugs, and I applaud your work in combating precursor chemicals that are used in clandestine laboratory production, which in turn is helping to reduce the manufacture and availability of illicit drugs," Ms Spence said.

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More Autopen 24s for Lantus insulin now available to pharmacy : 24/10/2006 :

Some AusPharmers may have missed last week's fax (below) from Sanofi-Aventis. AusPharm was told that, initially, Sanofi would only supply to diabetes educators or doctors and that some lobbying was required to persuade them that community pharmacy should also be able to supply.

However, pharmacies were only allowed one pen and then had to ring for another when that was supplied to a patient. The fax below allows pharmacies to order more although there does not seem to be a field on this order form to specify the quantity required.

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Medication Review incentive payments 'close' : 24/10/2006 :

In an AusPharmList post published on the AusPharmList website and in the (e)news today, AACP CEO Bill Kelly announces that progress has finally been made in securing the payment of the Medication Review Accreditation Incentives announced by Senator Santo Santoro at the Australian Pharmacy Professional conference on the Gold Coast in March this year. Accredited pharmacists are now expected to receive an information package in the first week in November.

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AusPharm Research Roundup
starts Monday
: 23/10/2006 :

Just a reminder that, commencing Monday, we will be running a regular weekly feature, 'AusPharm Research Roundup' , designed to bring AusPharmers a summary of selected research papers published during the preceding week or two. It will be put together for us by well known Australian pharmacist, Debbie Rigby.

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Ron scores a goal! : 19/10/2006 :

AusPharmers will have seen some of the coverage in the media over the last week about the 'triple whammy'. For example, The Australian ran this piece and The Age ran this piece.

As a follow up to this issue Ron Batagol wrote to the Herald Sun newspaper and his letter was the featured "My say" item in Wednesday's edition of the paper. Well done Ron for so publicly making the point that "....ibuprofen should never have been allowed into supermarkets to be sold without appropriate professional advice. Steps must be taken to immediately remove it from supermarket shelves.". The full text of Ron's letter appears below.

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Glucosamine products complexed with KCl to remain unscheduled : 19/10/2006 :

The TGA announced last week that it had agreed to amend the wording of the Schedule 4 entry for KCl. Of note is that the amended entry will exclude all currently marketed glucosamine sulfate products complexed with potassium chloride. The amendment was made in light of recommendations from the NSW Deputy Coroner that slow release potassium tablets no longer be available without a prescription. This was in response to the death of a 2 year old girl in the NSW town of Maitland in 2004 who died after ingesting potassium tablets.

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AusPharm wholesaler 'merger' poll results : 19/10/2006 :


122 people voted in this week's AusPharm poll that asked people for their thoughts on whether a merger between 2 of the existing wholesalers would lessen competition in the marketplace. AusPharmers seem clear in their view that any merger would result in less competition between wholesalers.

Post a comment to AusPharmList.

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*Warning* for Joke of the week : 12/10/2006 :

The second AusPharm Joke of the week is published (below) in tomorrow's (e)news. As we commented last week we acknowledge that it is sometimes difficult to get jokes that aren't sexist/ racist/ ageist/ chauvinist/ etcist. I'm sure you get the point. It is the nature of humour that some jokes rely on touches of these elements to 'work'. So....if you think that you might be offended by jokes that might be seen by some people to be sexist/ racist/ ageist/ chauvinist/ etcist please DON'T read the AusPharm Jokes of the week as they may offend.

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Results of AusPharm drug sampling poll : 12/10/2006 :



140 AusPharmers answered our call to tell us of their experience with possible excessive supply of drug samples by doctors. In response to the question "I have seen patients supplied with multiple sample packs:" 40% of respondents told us that they had encountered this occasionally with 38% reporting that they saw this 'often'.

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: 11/10/2006 :

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Drug sampling: what's your experience : 10/10/2006 :

In a post to AusPharmList last Friday Peter Allen listed 7 reasons why the provision of drug samples by doctors might be problematic. Amongst the issues Peter raised was the supply of multiple samples to patients to 'save you money'. AusPharm wonders how widespread this practice is. Please let us know of your experience (or lack of it) in today's AusPharm poll.

Post a comment to AusPharmList.

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