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AusPharm news

I Spy With My Pharmacist’s Eye : 13/02/2015 :

This week, our feature article “I Spy With My Pharmacist’s Eye got us wondering whether other ‘Listers were similarly blessed with / afflicted by “The Diagnostic Eye” syndrome described by feature writer Wendy Morton. 

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A shot across the bow from Health Minister Ley, ably assisted by News ltd : 13/02/2015 :

In a follow up piece to yesterday's News Ltd story that focussed on Super Pharmacy Plus in Stafford - which contains a small IGA Xpress outlet - today's News ltd publications have run another piece from Sue Dunlevy critical of the decision to shortlist the pharmacy for the 2015 Pharmacy of the Year award.

The piece quotes new federal Health Minister Sussan Ley as saying the Guild’s decision to nominate a supermarket pharmacy “indicated an openness for discussions [about pharmacies in supermarkets] and she would seek to clarify their position going forward”.

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Union wants a range of new allowances in Pharmacy Industry Award : 12/02/2015 :

Employee pharmacist union Professional Pharmacist Australia has detailed a range of changes it will be proposing to the Fair Work Commission in its review of the Pharmacy Industry Award 'to ensure the award remains relevant to the needs of the industry and most importantly to employee pharmacists'.

According to the union 'Employee community pharmacists have for some time sat back and watched their colleagues in hospitals and other professions gain better pay and conditions of employment while their pay and conditions have remained stagnant or gone backwards.'

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Closing the gap: pharmacists can help : 12/02/2015 :

Following Prime Minister Abbott's speech yesterday on Closing the Gap progress, the Pharmacy Guild announced it has lodged a submission with Health Minister Sussan Ley to trial a Medicines Review Service to Remote Area Aboriginal Health Service patients delivered by community pharmacies.

The trial would see the provision of a flexible and culturally appropriate Medicines Review Service to enhance the quality use of medicines and reduce the number of adverse drug events experienced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients living in remote areas. It would be fully funded from existing Community Pharmacy Agreement funding for medicine support for these communities, and would not require additional funding.  

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Pharmacists’ Support Service celebrates 20 years of supporting the profession : 12/02/2015 :

From small beginnings in Victoria in 1995 the Pharmacists’ Support Service (PSS) has now notched up 20 years of supporting the pharmacy profession. 

Since 1995 the service has expanded to support all Australian pharmacists, pharmacy interns and pharmacy students in all Australian states and territories.  To acknowledge this achievement and to assist in funding the expanded service PSS is aiming to raise $20,000 through fundraising activities in 2015.

Peak pharmacy student body, the National Australian Pharmacy Students Association (NAPSA) kick-started the effort by raising over $5000 during their recent Congress on the Gold Coast.

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WA approves PSA pharmacist-immunisation training course : 12/02/2015 :

The Western Australian Department of Health has approved the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia’s Pharmacist Immunisation Training package, meaning pharmacist-delivered vaccinations is a step closer in that state.

Under the WA legislation, pharmacists are recognised as authorised immunisers and the PSA training is recognised under the Australian Vocational Education and Training sector and is accredited by the Australian Skills Quality Authority.

The PSA training being offered in Western Australia is based on the training used internationally by more than 150,000 pharmacists and also in the highly successful Queensland Pharmacy Immunisation Pilot.

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PSA proposes Pharmacist Incentive Payment to integrate pharmacists in general practices : 11/02/2015 :

The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia said today it believes better utilisation of pharmacists’ skills would result in improved health outcomes and cost effectiveness of primary care in GP practices and Aboriginal Health Services.

The two areas are highlighted in PSA’s 2015 Budget submission titled Integrating pharmacists into primary care teams - Better health outcomes through cost-effective models of care.

PSA President, Grant Kardachi, said it was imperative that the skills and knowledge of pharmacists be better utilised and integrated into the health system.

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Poll: are you afflicted by The Diagnostic Eye? : 11/02/2015 :

In an eminently readable article on AusPharm yesterday - I spy with my pharmacist eye   - Wendy Morton told of her affliction by The Diagnostic Eye.

The condition means that Wendy can't help bringing her professional 'vision' to everyday events, seeing medical / pharmacy pitfalls in a range of ordinary situations.

Are you also afflicted by The Diagnostic Eye? Please let us know by ticking the relevant box in today's AusPharm poll.

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Pharmore appoints administrators : 11/02/2015 :

Administrators have been appointed to manage the affairs of Pharmore Pty Ltd - parent company of the Pharmore pharmacy chain.

The move comes after the company was unable to 'undertake a restructuring of its operations and an overhead structure that exceeded its revenue'.

The company performed various head office administrative functions on behalf of its 17 member pharmacies. The pharmacies are not subject to the appointment of the administrators and are continuing to trade.

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GSK hits back on vaccine price criticism : 10/02/2015 :

Following criticism from Médecins Sans Frontière that both Pfizer and GSK are charging developing countries too much for the vaccine products, GSK has hit back saying that around 80% of all of its vaccines are provided to developing countries at a substantial discount to western prices.

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Respected SA pharmacist Peter Bayly honoured : 09/02/2015 :

Respected South Australian pharmacist and AusPharmList frequent flyer Peter Bayly has now officially retired from his positions with PDL after 26 years and with PSA after 38 years.

Peter held numerous posts with both PDL and PSA during his more than 50 years of practice as a pharmacist, including as PSA SA Branch President (1982-84) and as Chair of the SA PDL Local Committee (1988-2013). He was the SA Director of PDL from 2008-2012.

He was given a send-off by PDL last last month at the Naval, Military and Air Force Club of South Australia.

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RGH E‑Bulletin: Drug-related electrolyte abnormalities (part two) : 09/02/2015 :

The topic of this week's RGH E‑Bulletin is Drug-related electrolyte abnormalities (part two).

"This E-Bulletin continues discussion of common and clinically important electrolyte abnormalities. The information provided is not intended to be exhaustive, but instead provides a range of examples where electrolyte disturbances are associated with medications. Serum Potassium: Abnormalities in the serum potassium are amongst the most common of all medication-related electrolyte disturbances, and can have profound clinical consequences."

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

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PBAC Chair moves on : 06/02/2015 :

Dr Suzanne Hill, the Chair of the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC), will be leaving the position in March to take up a new role with the World Health Organization.

Dr Hill's predecessor as PBAC Chair was pharmacist Professor Lloyd Sansom, who held the position for 10 years between 2001 and 2011.

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TGA consultation on additional advisory statements for OTC NSAIDS : 06/02/2015 :

The TGA is seeking input from health professionals and consumers on the wording of proposed new advisory statements for the labels of OTC NSAIDS for oral use.

The agency is proposing to include words warning that excessive or prolonged use 'can be harmful and increase the risk of heart attack, stroke or liver damage'.

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TGA backs pharmacist advice on naproxen: rejects application to go open : 06/02/2015 :

In one of a number of interim decisions handed down yesterday the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) announced it has rejected a proposal to allow naproxen to be sold in supermarkets.

One of the reasons the proposal - to amend the Schedule 2 naproxen entry to exclude naproxen in a dosage form of 200 mg or less of naproxen per dosage unit in packs of 12 or less dosage units with a maximum recommended daily dose of not more than 600 mg of naproxen, and when not labelled for the treatment of children 12 years of age or less - was rejected by the TGA was because of the 'potential for inappropriate & overuse of the product, especially if advice from a pharmacist is not available'.

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US state targets retailers of dodgy CAMs : 06/02/2015 :

In a move that could have wide ranging implications for US pharmacies, New York state has targeted the retailers rather than the manufacturers of complementary medicines that have been found to fall short of required standards.

New York authorities have asked four companies - GNC, Target, Walmart, and Walgreens - to provide detailed information relating to the production, processing and testing of herbal supplements sold at their stores, as well as set forth a thorough explanation of the quality control measures they have in place. They have also asked the retailers - which includes pharmacy chain Walgreens - to immediately to stop the sale of the affected products.

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Vaccines work - here are the facts : 05/02/2015 :

This is a terrific graphical representation of the case for vaccination - not that any pharmacists will need convincing of course.

It might, however, be useful for unbelieving patients.

Click on the image at right to take a look.

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New AusPharm CE: RGH Pharmacy eBulletin Digest Issue No.77 : 05/02/2015 :

The first in our 2015 series of continuing professional development activities is the RGH E-Bulletin Digest No. 77.

This CPD activity assesses your understanding of four recent RGH Pharmacy E-Bulletins, Volumes 56-3→56-6 (September/October 2014).

 

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Guild repeats call for greater role for community pharmacy in primary care : 05/02/2015 :

The Pharmacy Guild has used yesterday's release of a Productivity Commission report on primary and community health to push its case for community pharmacists to play a greater role in primary care.

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Medicines Australia: Past Intergenerational Reports got PBS projections wrong : 05/02/2015 :

Peak Australian pharma body Medicines Australia (MA) yesterday released a new analysis of past Intergenerational Reports (IGR) which it says demonstrates that they seriously overestimated PBS expenditure as a proportion of GDP.

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