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AusPharm news

Guild, PSA run Courier Mail ad to counter pharmacy vaccination misinformation : 27/03/2014 :

The Pharmacy Guild and the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia yesterday jointly ran an advertisement in the Brisbane Courier Mail to counter misinformation on pharmacist vaccination contained in an advertisement run in the paper on Sunday by the Revive nurse practitioner Clinic.

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5CPA: PPI Clinical Intervention and DAA Claiming Information : 27/03/2014 :

There are many advantages to the new online 5CPA portal that streamlines both the registration and claiming processes for 5CPA programs.

To claim PPI Clinical Intervention and DAA incentives, pharmacies must register via the 5CPA Registration and Claiming Portal.

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Grant for outstanding contribution to quality use of medicines in pain management : 26/03/2014 :

The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia, in association with Mundipharma, has announced it will, once again in 2014, award an educational grant to a pharmacist who has made an outstanding contribution to the quality use of medicines through direct clinical care of consumers with persistent pain.

The Chief Executive Officer of the PSA, Liesel Wett, said pharmacists had a key role in pain management and the award would further encourage development of this role.

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UQ pharmacy students inducted with white coat ceremony : 26/03/2014 :

A sea of white coats recently flanked The University of Queensland’s Pharmacy Australia Centre of Excellence (PACE) as first-year students were welcomed at an official ceremony.

The School of Pharmacy hosted the annual Student Engagement Ceremony to welcome new students and present them with their white dispensing coat which is symbolic of the pharmacy profession.

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Industry continues down-scheduling push : 26/03/2014 :

The rescheduling of the most commonly used prescription medicines to over-the-counter (OTC) status could save the Australian healthcare system approximately $2.1 billion a year, according to a new industry funded study.

The study, conducted by the Macquarie University Centre for the Health Economy and funded by peak non prescription body, the Australian Self Medication Industry (ASMI), found that the rescheduling, or ‘switching’ from prescription to Pharmacist Only could achieve savings of $1.1 billion through some 17 million avoided GP visits, and a further $1 billion in productivity savings.

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Time to start thinking about getting a flu vaccine : 26/03/2014 :

Although it is still early in the season, NPS MedicineWise has commenced its annual campaign to encourage people at risk of complications of the flu (influenza) to get vaccinated against the illness.

People at higher risk include those who are 65 years or older, pregnant women, Aboriginal peoples and Torres Strait Islanders who are 15 years or older, and people who have certain medical conditions including heart disease,  diabetes and lung disease.

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Poll: are pharmacists in community pharmacies in your part of the country either having their hours cut back or losing their jobs altogether? : 26/03/2014 :

In a post to AusPharmList yesterday, a 'lister wrote: "A group pharmacy managed by one pharmacist with another employed and only just enough staff have let go a senior full-timer with tears all round. This person was highly knowledgeable and the customers loved her. The manager told me (the locum ) that head office had decided the bottom line had dropped so far due to price disclosure that something had to give."

AusPharm has heard a number of similar stories involving both pharmacists and non pharmacist staff having their hours cut back and losing their jobs altogether.

What have you heard? With regard just to pharmacists, is employment dropping off in your part of the country?

Please help us find out by ticking the relevant box in today's AusPharm poll.

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Revive Clinic nurse practitioner group clarifies position on pharmacist vaccination : 25/03/2014 :

Following scathing criticism from pharmacy groups of the Revive Clinic's Sunday Mail advertisement which claimed that pharmacists were not legally approved to vaccinate and implied that pharmacist vaccination would be unsafe, the group moved yesterday to clarify its position on pharmacists vaccinating

The Revive Clinic Group says it is not opposed to pharmacists vaccinating but believes the Queensland trial has been implemented to benefit one pharmacy group without proper training provided to the pharmacists participating. 

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RGH E‑Bulletin: Ticagrelor-induced Dyspnoea : 24/03/2014 :

The topic of this week's RGH E‑Bulletin is Ticagrelor-induced Dyspnoea.

"Ticagrelor, an oral antiplatelet indicated for use in acute coronary syndromes, is a reversibly binding P2Y12 receptor antagonist. It selectively inhibits receptor activation mediated through adenosine diphosphate (ADP). The extent/reliability of inhibition of platelet aggregation is thought to be superior to clopidogrel, as reflected by a reduced incidence of ischaemic events and deaths in the ticagrelor arm of the PLATO study. Ticagrelor’s primary safety variable is the risk of major bleeding, however in three multi-centre, double-blind, randomized trials (PLATO, ONSET/OFFSET & DISPERSE-2); the use of ticagrelor was correlated with an increased incidence of dyspnoea compared to that observed during treatment with clopidogrel."

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

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Petition seeks change to New AHPRA advertising guidelines : 24/03/2014 :

A petition launched by a Melbourne doctor which aims to have a section removed from the new AHPRA advertising guidelines has gained over 650 signatures since its launch last week.

The section in question - Section 6.2.3 - says: “A practitioner must take reasonable steps to have any testimonials associated with their health service or business removed when they become aware of them, even if they appear on a website that is not directly associated and/or under the direct control or administration of that health practitioner and/or their business or service. This includes unsolicited testimonials.”

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Revive: pharmacists 'not legally approved' to vaccinate : 24/03/2014 :

Reviveclinic, who run nurse practitioner clinics in pharmacies around Australia, is urging consumers to avoid having flu vaccines administered in pharmacies participating in the Queensland pharmacist influenza vaccination trial as 'Pharmacists are not legally approved to vaccinate anywhere in Australia due to not having the required medical training'.

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JPPR teams up with Wiley : 24/03/2014 :

The Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Australia (SHPA) has engaged publishing company Wiley to manage the future production and publication of its official journal, the Journal of Pharmacy Practice and Research (JPPR).

SHPA will retain ownership of JPPR while outsourcing the day-to-day management of manuscripts and production of each issue to Wiley, starting with the June 2014 issue.

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Guild welcomes government move on parental leave : 24/03/2014 :

The Pharmacy Guild of Australia said on Friday that it strongly supports the move by the Minister for Small Business, Bruce Billson, to relieve businesses of the requirement to act as the paymaster under the Paid Parental Leave scheme.

The introduction by the Minister of the Paid Parental Leave Amendment Bill 2014 is a victory for common sense says the Guild who points out that, if passed, the bill will result in a reduction in the red tape burden on business. This is particularly the case for pharmacy the Guild says, as the pharmacy workforce is 87 per cent female and the instance of paid parental leave is high in the sector.

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The Dunlevy spin on April 1 PBS price cuts : 21/03/2014 :

Writing in News Ltd papers yesterday morning Sue Dunlevy described the 1 April PBS price disclosure price reductions as 'the goverment stop[ping] overpayments to chemists' adding that 'the government has been paying pharmacists up to 80% above the market price'.

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Pharmacists in no hurry to review new Board documents : 21/03/2014 :

In light the Pharmacy Board`s revised mandatory notification and advertising guidelines, revised code of conduct and new social media policy, which came into effect on Monday, this week's poll asked 'listers whether they'd taken a look at them.

Only 31% of respondents had with 45% saying they planned to soon. 22% had no plans to have a look at the new documents as 'it's just common sense'.

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Cross: PBS a national treasure : 21/03/2014 :

Speaking at the National Press Club in Canberra on Wednesday, Chairman of Medicines Australia, Dr Martin Cross, repeated the Medicines Australia mantra that the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme is on a sustainable footing and that it is important that government and industry work closely together on medicines policy.

“Australians enjoy amongst the highest life expectancy in the world thanks in large part to the medicines available through the PBS,” Dr Cross said.

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Be on the lookout for dodgy Oxycontin scripts : 21/03/2014 :

Pharmacists are being warned to be especially vigilant when assessing prescriptions for Oxycontin for authenticity.

The warning, issued by the Pharmacy Guild yesterday, follows the release of a new formulation of the product which makes it much more difficult for it to be misused, for example by injecting.

In the transition to the new formulation it is possible that people wishing to misuse the original product may present forged scripts for either Oxcycontin itself or for the immediate release version of oxycodone, Endone.

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April 2014 PBS schedule : 20/03/2014 :

Download the Full PBS schedule

Download the PBS ‘Summary of Changes’

Download the Efficient Funding of Chemotherapy – S100 Arrangements Supplement

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Natalizumab and melanoma : 20/03/2014 :

The TGA is monitoring reports of melanoma in patients being treated with natalizumab and is encouraging health professionals to report all such cases. Three such cases have been reported to the TGA.

Natalizumab (Tysabri) is used to treat patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis to delay the progression of physical disability and reduce the frequency of relapse.

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Tassone appointed to NatRUM Board : 20/03/2014 :

The Board of the National Return & Disposal of Unwanted Medicines (NatRUM) project has appointed Anthony Tassone to its board. Mr Tassone replaces retiring Board member Dipak Sanghvi as the Pharmacy Guild’s representative.

The NatRUM project is a widely utilised and respected national scheme that provides for unwanted and out-of-date medicines to be collected from consumers for safe disposal by community pharmacies.

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