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AusPharm news

PSA: professional services funding needs to double in 6CPA : 10/04/2015 :

Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) President Grant Kardachi has called for the $660 million allocated to professional services in the 5th Agreement to be more than doubled in the 6th Agreement.

In an email to PSA to members this week he wrote "At least $1.4 billion is required in Part B of the next agreement (the section dealing with professional services and programs), as well as a stable dispensing remuneration base to ensure continued QUM for patients."

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Guild: mandate STOP nationally : 10/04/2015 :

The Pharmacy Guild believes mandating the use of Project STOP across Australia is a vital part of any strategy to tackle the growing problem of ice (crystal methamphetamine) use in the community.

It has welcomed the establishment by Prime Minister Tony Abbott of a taskforce to develop a National Ice Action Strategy to address the problem and says community pharmacy stands ready to help.

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Quilty: Harper Review muddled and intellectually lazy on pharmacy : 09/04/2015 :

In the face of an avalanche of support from political commentators and others for Harper Review recommendations that pharmacy location and ownership rules be abolished, Pharmacy Guild Executive Director, David Quilty, said yesterday that the Review report was a profoundly disappointing document that 'is both muddled and intellectually lazy'.

Writing in the Guild's Forefront publication Mr Quilty said that the Review 'utterly fails to make the case to demonstrate that any benefits from deregulation would outweigh the costs and risks entailed in dismantling a system that is not broken and enjoys the overwhelming support of the Australian public.'

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PDL Director needed for Tasmania : 09/04/2015 :

Expressions (EOI) of interest have been invited by PDL for the position of Director for Tasmania.

A casual vacancy will exist from June 2015 for a director on the PDL Board of Directors.

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New AusPharm CE: RGH Pharmacy eBulletin Digest Issue No.79 : 09/04/2015 :

The next in our 2015 series of continuing professional development activities is the RGH E-Bulletin Digest No. 79.

This CPD activity assesses your understanding of four recent RGH Pharmacy E-Bulletins, Volumes 56-11→57-2 (November/December 2014).

 

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ACT government funds pharmacy based QUIT program : 08/04/2015 :

The ACT government has invested $138,000 in a new pharmacy-led smoking cessation program, to be delivered through a network of about 20 community pharmacies in the ACT in 2015 and 2016.

The program, part of a two-year funded initiative of the Healthy Canberra Grants, will have a multi-faceted approach aimed at increasing awareness of the health implications of tobacco use, and providing ACT residents with improved access, medication expertise and ongoing counselling.

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Poll: should Schedule 3 codeine containing analgesics be up-scheduled to Schedule 4? : 08/04/2015 :

As reported in AusPharm yesterday, the TGA's Advisory Committee on Medicines Scheduling (ACMS) will look at a proposal at its July meeting to up-schedule Schedule 3 codeine containing analgesics to Schedule 4.

What do you think? Good idea or should consumers continue to have access to low dose codeine containing analgesics through Schedule 3?

Please let us know what you think by voting in today's AusPharm poll.

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Growth in use of pharmacotherapy treatment for drug dependence slows, cohort ageing : 08/04/2015 :

Growth in the number of people receiving pharmacotherapy treatment for opioid dependence has slowed, according to new information published today on the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) website.

Over 48,000 Australians were on a course of pharmacotherapy treatment for opioid dependence on a snapshot day in 2014. While the number of people receiving opioid pharmacotherapy treatment almost doubled between 1998 and 2014, growth in client numbers has slowed in recent years.

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MIMS Monthly Medicine Update : 07/04/2015 :

The MIMS April 2015 Monthly Medicine Update is now available. Click the link to read it now.

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GPs critical of expanded role for community pharmacists : 07/04/2015 :

In a new position paper, the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) has expressed concerns about proposed expanded roles for community pharmacists but says there is 'value in incorporating clinical pharmacists into general practice settings'.

The new position paper - The expanding role of pharmacists in primary healthcare - puts the RACGP's view that there is an inherent conflict of interest in pharmacists delivering 'general practice services'. One of the great strengths of medication prescribing in Australia, says the College, is the high degree of separation between the prescriber and the medication dispenser as 'it enables more objective prescribing, free of pecuniary interests and leads to better allocation of resources'.

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RGH E‑Bulletin: Vitamin B12 deficiency : 07/04/2015 :

The topic of this week's RGH E‑Bulletin is Vitamin B12 deficiency.

"Vitamin B12, also referred to as cobalamin, is an essential cofactor in DNA synthesis and cellular metabolism, including haematopoiesis. Vitamin B12 also has important role in sustaining myelin in the nervous system. Intracellular conversion of vitamin B12 produces active coenzymes, adenosylcobalamin in mitochondria and methylcobalamin in the cytoplasm – these are essential for homeostasis of methylmalonic acid (MMA) and homocysteine."

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

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Schedule 3 codeine containing analgesics may go script only : 06/04/2015 :

A proposal to be considered at the July meeting of the Therapeutic Goods Administration's Advisory Committee on Medicines Scheduling (ACMS) may see all Schedule 3 codeine containing products up-scheduled to prescription only status.

Amidst concerns about the morbidity, toxicity and dependence associated with their use, most non-prescription codeine containing products were up-scheduled from Schedule 2 into Schedule 3 in 2010.

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April Australian Prescriber : 02/04/2015 :

The April 2015 issue of Australian Prescriber is now available online. Topics featured in this issue include:

  • How to manage warfarin therapy
  • Imaging for chronic abdominal pain in adults
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder

It also contains the most recent Medicines Safety Update.

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Guild: plain language draft of award needed : 02/04/2015 :

The Pharmacy Guild yesterday lodged a plain language draft of the Pharmacy Industry Award with the Fair Work Commission, as part of the proceedings dealing with the four yearly review of modern awards.

Modern awards should be written in a way that is appropriate for the audience, says the Pharmacy Guild.

"If a law affects people (for example, an employment law affecting small business), those people should have at least a fighting chance of understanding it. The language used in a law should depend on who the law affects, taking account of how familiar they are with the subject," said a Guild spokesperson.

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Consumers call for Agreement 'overhaul' again.... : 02/04/2015 :

For the fifth time in less than a month the Consumers' Health Forum (CHF) has called for reform of the community pharmacy regulatory framework.

Citing the Harper Review's recommendations that pharmacy ownership And location rules be abolished, and this time enlisting the support of Cancer Voices Australia and the Chronic Illness Alliance, CHF said in a statement 'the next pharmacy agreement needs to be refashioned more in the interests of patients rather than in the predominant interests of pharmacy owners and Pharmacy Guild, as at present.'

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Pharmacists want real time codeine monitoring : 02/04/2015 :

The results of this week's AusPharm poll reveal that pharmacists are very much in favour of the establishment of a real time, online recording and reporting platform for Schedule 3 codeine containing analgesics.

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New PSA / Aspen awards to recognise innovation in pharmacy practice : 02/04/2015 :

New awards to recognise innovation in pharmacy through sustainable business practices have been announced by the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia and Aspen Pharmacare Australia.

The Aspen Pharmacare Australia and PSA Innovation Grants seek to identify and pursue innovative ways to improve customer satisfaction and engagement, business profitability and sales growth in all areas of pharmacy practice.

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AusPharm over Easter : 02/04/2015 :

Because of the Easter public holidays, AusPharm won't be publishing on either Good Friday or Easter Monday.

We'll be back as usual on Tuesday.

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Guild, PSA reject Harper review recommendation to abolish ownership, location rules : 01/04/2015 :

As had been widely expected, the final report of the National Competition Policy (Harper) Review has recommended that the laws relating to pharmacy ownership and location be abolished as they 'are not needed to ensure the quality of advice and care provided to patients'.

Both the Pharmacy Guild and the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) have rejected the recommendations, saying the existing community pharmacy regulatory framework 'isn't broken', doesn't need 'to be fixed' and serves the Australian community well.

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April 1 medicine price cuts no joke : 01/04/2015 :

Today’s medicine price cuts will put further pressure on community pharmacies at a time when they are already under severe financial stress, and struggling to maintain services and jobs, says the Pharmacy Guild.

While the PBS price cuts which take effect from today (1 April) are welcome news for taxpayers, the Guild believes they are putting the network of local pharmacies around Australia at risk.

Government per prescription remuneration for pharmacies – which is partly linked to the price of the drug – is now running below levels last seen in 2009 while business costs have continued to increase during the same period.

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