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AusPharm news

Peak body for hepatitis keeps the pressure on for 'timely treatment' : 04/02/2015 :

Hepatitis Australia is using World Cancer Day today (4 February) to highlight the need for increased efforts to prevent and treat viral hepatitis as a cancer prevention strategy.

Cancer of the liver looms as Australia’s greatest cancer challenge, says the organisation, with new a analysis revealing that liver cancer has the highest ‘death-to-incidence ratio’ – indicating shorter average survival – of any cancer in Australia.

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Chemmart launches new campaign to raise funds for ovarian cancer : 04/02/2015 :

Chemmart has this week launched its MANicure campaign to raise funds for ovarian cancer during Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month this February. The campaign is an extension of the ‘Colour for a Cause’ campaign launched by the banner group last year.

MANicure is a symbolic campaign demonstrating that ovarian cancer is not just a women’s disease. It encourages Australian men and women to paint their nails teal – the international colour for ovarian cancer – in a bid to show their support for the women and their families living with the disease.

1400 Australian women are diagnosed with ovarian cancer each year and over 1000 will die of the disease.

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CAM industry pushes for federal budget assistance : 04/02/2015 :

Complementary Medicines Australia (CMA) is pushing for the federal government to acknowledge 'the economic and population health contributions' made by the complementary medicines industry when framing this year's federal budget.

“In a supportive environment, the complementary medicines industry is one industry that has the ability to grow exponentially, to support local innovation-rich manufacturing, research and development, and to provide a significant contribution to Australian jobs and exports,” said Carl Gibson, chief executive officer of CMA yesterday.

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Pharmacist vaccination: good news for pharmacies? : 04/02/2015 :

News broke this week that NSW is likely to become the 5th Australian state (or territory) after Queensland, the Northern  Territory, Western Australia and South Australia to allow pharmacists to provide vaccination services out of community pharmacies.

Is the emergence of widespread endorsement of pharmacist administered vaccination services good news for the profession or not?

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

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350+ attend NAPSA Congress 2015 : 04/02/2015 :

Pharmacy students are ready to “Step into the future, a Future Beyond the Counter” after this year’s NAPSA Congress, held on the Gold Coast from last week.

Over 350 students from 19 universities around Australia were hosted by NAPSA at Griffith University's the Gold Coast campus.

With leadership and future practice as the key focus, speakers included Rhonda White AO, co-founder of Terry White Chemists, Grant Kardachi, PSA President; Lindy Swain, rural pharmacist and Pharmacist of the Year 2014; Dr. Lisa Nissen, Chris Campbell and Tim Logan who spoke about the future of pharmacists’ immunising; and SHPA President Prof Michael Dooley who highlighted the futures of clinical practice.

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MIMS Monthly Medicine Update : 04/02/2015 :

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

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Pharmacists on TV : 03/02/2015 :

After much recent talk on AusPharmList about the relative dearth of TV shows or movies featuring pharmacists, what will no doubt be one of the most watched TV commercials in the US this year - a Super Bowl ad - featured one.

Walter White - Heisenberg in cult series Breaking Bad - featured in an insurance commercial as 'sorta pharmacist' Greg.

Click the image to watch the ad.

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Safety alerts on COCs and metoclopramide : 03/02/2015 :

The latest issue of the Therapeutic Goods Administration's Medicines Safety Update, published on its website yesterday, contains safety alerts relating to the use of combined oral contraceptives and to the use of metoclopramide.

The TGA says it is working with makers of COCs to update Product Information (PI) to ensure information regarding a link between the products and inflammatory bowel disease is included.

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February Australian prescriber: Measuring Vitamin D, BP monitoring, choosing the right OC : 03/02/2015 :

The latest edition of Australian Prescriber - out this week (here) - provides an analysis of the recent Australian guidelines outlining who should be tested for vitamin D deficiency.

Endocrinologist and pathologist Dr Paul Glendenning from Royal Perth Hospital summarises the recent changes in terms of who should be treated and when repeat testing should be performed.

“Vitamin D testing has become more common, but testing is recommended for those at risk of vitamin D deficiency, not for healthy babies, children and adults," said Dr Glendenning.

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

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

"There are many medications that can cause abnormalities in the serum electrolyte profile – in some cases these disturbances can be mild, transient and relatively insignificant, but in others there may be potentially serious symptoms or complications that can contribute to morbidity or mortality. In this E-Bulletin a range of potentially iatrogenic cases of electrolyte disturbance are discussed. "

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

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Support for NSW pharmacist vaccination welcomed : 02/02/2015 :

The President of the NSW Branch of the Pharmacy Guild, Paul Sinclair, has welcomed the announcement by the NSW Opposition that a Labor Government would move quickly to enable the administration of vaccinations to adults by pharmacists.

"Labor's commitment to make the required regulatory changes by June this year if they win the State election in March is a welcome development, which adds to the growing support across Australia for this common sense enhancement to our national health system," Mr Sinclair said.

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The singing pharmacist : 02/02/2015 :

Australian pharmacies wanting to differentiate themselves from what might be a crowded flu vaccination marketplace this year might like to consider this 'innovative' approach to marketing their service.

According to US pharmacist Eldon Wilson, once he started singing, his pharmacy sold out of flu vaccines within days.

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API foreshadows further trading term 'adjustments' : 01/02/2015 :

In a move that will put further pressure on pharmacy profitability Australian Pharmaceutical Industries CEO Stephen Roche said last week that the company would be making further adjustments to pharmacy trading terms.

Speaking at the company's Annual General Meeting last week Mr Roche said that the move was prompted by ongoing PBS price deflation and was needed to 'retain an acceptable return on our capital employed'.

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More than 50% of pharmacists likely to attend one or more pharmacy conferences in 2015 : 30/01/2015 :

The results of this week's AusPharm poll (n=170) reveal that almost half of the respondents will definitely attend at least one pharmacy conference this year. 17% will attend several either because they attend as part of their job or simply 'love conferences'. 15% say they haven't yet made up their mind about 2015 conference attendance.

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Pharmacy Alliance rallies to support King Island pharmacy : 30/01/2015 :

Since King Island Pharmacy was destroyed by fire in the early hours of last Sunday morning, its banner group, Pharmacy Alliance, has provided significant logistic support to ensure the pharmacy is able to provide a continued service to the local community.

Pharmacy Alliance head office commenced work co-ordinating the pharmacy’s business requirements from Sunday morning and IT providers prepared a new dispensary computer, printer, and scanner which was delivered to the island on Tuesday.

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API: no substantive changes to wholesaler remuneration expected in 6CPA : 30/01/2015 :

Australian Pharmaceutical Industries' (API) CEO and Managing Director, Stephen Roche, said yesterday that the company did not expect the government to make any more substantive changes to the PBS reform process and that it did not 'anticipate material adjustments in wholesaler remuneration'.

The Community Service Obligation (CSO) component of the 5th Community Pharmacy Agreement, available to full line pharmacy wholesalers only, underpins wholesaler viability and any move to reduce or remove it would threaten their ability to maintain satisfactory service levels to community pharmacies.

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Most fatal burden of disease caused by cancer and cardiovascular disease : 30/01/2015 :

A new report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) looks at years of life lost due to premature death, and the leading causes of these deaths.

The report, Australian Burden of Disease Study: Fatal burden of disease 2010, shows that there were around 143,500 deaths in Australia in 2010, resulting in 2.25 million years of life lost. The term fatal burden refers to years of life lost, using the measure YLL (years of life lost). One YLL represents one year of healthy life lost due to premature death, said AIHW spokesperson Dr Lynelle Moon.

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Health Minister forgets consumers? : 29/01/2015 :

Health Minister Sussan Ley should be focusing her consultations on a sustainable Medicare on consumers rather than those who get paid by the health system, says the Consumers Health Forum.

In a statement issued this week the group points out that the health system exists to deliver improved health outcomes for health consumers but the Health Minister has forgotten the central players in the health system - consumers - in her consultations on future directions for Medicare.

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A new, simple and valuable revenue stream for pharmacy : 29/01/2015 :

PharmacyID is a new, innovative service that will allow members of the public to visit their local community pharmacy to verify their identity online.  It’s an efficient, secure consumer service and for the first time offers pharmacies a new, simple and valuable revenue stream.

Today, consumers are constantly required to prove their identity, whether to renew their driver’s licence, a national police history check or for passport applications. It’s therefore becoming more important than ever before to protect our personal information. Giving away personal information to multiple organisations increases the risk of someone stealing our identity information.

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Tambassis interviews Robbo : 29/01/2015 :

Following their recent bush sojourn, the Pharmacy Guild has put up a video of President George Tambassis interviewing remote area pharmacist Andrew 'Robbo' Roberts about pharmacy practice in the Aboriginal communities of central Western Australia.

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