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AusPharm news

PBN, NCE --> Pharmacy Connect : 07/12/2015 :

The old Pharmacy Business Network and National Convention & Exhibition conferences are to be replaced in 2016 with a new Sydney based conference caled Pharmacy Connect. It is to be held on 9-10 September at Darling Harbour.

The program will include business and clinical education sessions, a trade exhibition with 60+ exhibitors, a Welcome Reception and a Gala Dinner.

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Carrington, Roberts honoured by SHPA : 07/12/2015 :

The Australian Clinical Pharmacy Award for 2015 has been awarded to Queensland pharmacist, Dr Christine Carrington (pictured right), and the SHPA Medal of Merit for 2015 has gone to Tasmanian pharmacist, Amber Roberts.

Both awards were presented at Medicines Management 2015, the 41st SHPA National Conference, held in Melbourne over the weekend.

The Australian Clinical Pharmacy Award is one of SHPA’s highest honours and is bestowed to recognise outstanding contributions to clinical pharmacy practice. The SHPA Medal of Merit is awarded by SHPA’s Federal Council to recognise outstanding recent contribution and exemplary effort relating to hospital pharmacy practice.

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New Board video for pharmacy students and graduates : 04/12/2015 :

A new three minute video has been launched by the Pharmacy Board of Australia outlining the steps graduates need to take to gain provisional registration and complete an internship.

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PBS information on infliximab biosimilar : 04/12/2015 :

The government’s PBS Access and Sustainability Package, which includes the Sixth Community Pharmacy Agreement (6CPA), allocated $20 million over the period 2015-18 for activities designed to improve awareness and confidence in biosimilar medicines, for both health professionals and consumers. 

From 1 December 2015, a biosimilar infliximab (Inflectra®) is listed on the PBS for the same indications as Remicade®.

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SHPA’s highest award goes to Sue Kirsa : 04/12/2015 :

Sue Kirsa is the recipient of the Fred J Boyd Award for 2015. She received her award and delivered an oration this morning during the opening plenary session of Medicines Management 2015, the 41st SHPA National Conference.

Named in honour of SHPA’s founding president, the Fred J Boyd Award is SHPA’s highest award; it is awarded to recognise significant contributions to hospital pharmacy.

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Pharmacies can play a critical role in medicine supply in natural disasters : 04/12/2015 :

The recent bushfires in Western Australia and South Australia and the prospect of a hot dry summer have reinforced the need for residents in areas susceptible to natural disasters such as bushfires, storms and floods to visit their community pharmacy to develop a disaster emergency medication plan says the Pharmacy Guild.

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Pharmacists: changes to location rules on the cards? : 04/12/2015 :

A majority of those voting in this week's AusPharm poll believe the upcoming 6CPA review of pharmacy regulation will see changes to the pharmacy location rules.

However, only about 1/3 of poll respondents think changes to ownership rules will flow from the recent Harper review of competition policy.

12% of those voting think both ownership and location rules will be completely abolished with 14% taking the more measured view that there will be 'some relaxation of both'.

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New Hep C drugs work : 03/12/2015 :

New treatments for hepatitis C are reviewed by gastroenterologists Alex Thompson and Jacinta Holmes in the latest issue of Australian Prescriber.

It is estimated that more than 230,000 Australians are chronically infected with the hepatitis C virus. Currently hepatitis C is managed mainly by specialists. However, with the advent of these new drugs, it may be possible for some patients to be managed in primary care.

“Hepatitis C treatment has moved along at a dramatic pace with a number of direct-acting drugs recently developed such as sofosbuvir,” said Drs Thompson and Holmes.

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Medicinal cannabis to be cultivated through single national scheme : 03/12/2015 :

The federal government announced yesterday that it is to oversee all regulatory aspects of the cultivation of medical cannabis through one national scheme.

The move will remove the need for states and territories to implement legislation to set up individual cultivation schemes and ensure laws are consistent across the country for growers. It follows consultation with state and territory governments and law enforcement agencies over the past month.

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Varenicline (Champix) safety advisory – risks of psychiatric symptoms and potential interaction with alcohol : 03/12/2015 :

The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) has moved to strengthen the warnings in varenicline prescribing information relating to the risk of psychiatric symptoms and of a potential increased risk of this occurring if alcohol is consumed.

The psychiatric symptoms can involve changes in behaviour, thinking or mood and may include depression, anxiety, agitation, aggression, mood swings, self-harm, thoughts of self-harm, or seeing, hearing or sensing things that are not there.

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Friday's AusPharm @ 9.30AM : 03/12/2015 :

We'll be delaying publication of our daily AusPharm(e)news today until 9.30AM so we can include the announcement of the winner of the SHPA Fred Boyd award for 2015.

Established in 1978, this award is the most prestigious recognition given by SHPA, and is in memory of Fred J Boyd, the Founding President of The Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Australia.

The award is given to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to hospital pharmacy in Australia.

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FIP issues guidance to help pharmacy staff deal with refugees : 02/12/2015 :

The International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) has this week issued guidance for pharmacists and pharmacy staff on how to help pharmacy staff deal with refugees.

The advisory document - Providing pharmaceutical care to migrant populations - was produced by an FIP emergency task force set up last month to identify resources to help pharmacists, particularly those affected by the current migrant crisis in Europe. It may also be useful for Australian pharmacists in light of the 12,000 Syrian refugees set to arrive in the country in the next year or so.

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Guild Pharmacy of the Year 2016 finalists announced : 02/12/2015 :

The five finalist community pharmacies for this year’s Guild Pharmacy of the Year Award have been announced.

They now are being considered for the highest award and recognition of achievement within the pharmacy industry, Guild Pharmacy of the Year. Category winners and the overall winner for 2016 will be announced at the APP conference on the Gold Coast on Thursday 17 March, 2016.

A different community pharmacy will be selected as the winner in each category, with the Guild Pharmacy of the Year for 2016 being selected from these three individual category winners.

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Willach opens new training facility : 02/12/2015 :

Pharmacy dispensary logistics provider Willach Australia has opened the doors to a new $500,000 training facility in Burwood, east of Melbourne.

The 1000sqm site is more than double the size of its previous premises in Richmond, comprising a training facility and showroom as well as  warehouse space.

Willach products, both automated and non-automated, are now present in over 800 Australian pharmacies.

The company currently employs 20 people, with 12 staff members now based at Burwood.

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TGA clears PPIs over cardio risk - for now : 02/12/2015 :

A TGA review of two recent studies linking proton pump inhibitor use with an increased risk of myocardial infarction has found that neither adequately demonstrated an increased risk that is independent of the patient population in which they are being used. As a result, says the TGA, no further action is required at this time.

A 2010 study by Charlot and colleagues found that PPI use in a high-risk (post-myocardial infarction) population was associated with an increased risk of adverse cardiovascular outcomes. A subsequent study in 2015 by Shah et al found that PPI use was associated with an increased risk of acute myocardial infarction in the general population.

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Poll: location rules, ownership : 02/12/2015 :

The Turnbull Government last week released its response to the Harper National Competition Policy Review and, unsurprisingly, has deferred taking action on Recommendation 14 - to remove pharmacy location and ownership restrictions.AusPharm poll.

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Scott McGregor awarded Barry Schultz medal : 01/12/2015 :

Former South Australian Pharmacy Guild Branch Committee member, Adelaide pharmacist Mr Scott McGregor, has been awarded the Barry Schultz medal for 2015.

The medal is awarded to a South Australian pharmacist deemed to have demonstrated the qualities that made the late Barry Schultz such a distinguished pharmacist and community member.

During his distinguished career in community pharmacy Mr McGregor was Managing Director of the Chemplus Group, a member of the Pharmacy Guild Branch Committee and Pharmacy Guild National Councillor and a director of Gold Cross.

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New Pharmacy Board standards and CPD guidelines come into effect today : 01/12/2015 :

A series of revised Pharmacy Board standards and guidelines for pharmacists come into effect today (1 December 2015). These are:

Registration standard: Continuing professional development (CPD)
Guidelines on continuing professional development
Registration standard: Recency of practice (RoP)
Registration standard: Supervised practice arrangements, and
Registration standard: Examinations for eligibility for general registration.

These are all available on the Board's website, here.

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Don't confuse 'medicinal' cannabis use with 'recreational' cannabis use : 01/12/2015 :

Controversies abound in how to produce, supply and administer medicinal cannabis.

Writing in the December edition of Australian Prescriber, published today,  Dr Brendan Murnion - Senior staff specialist, Drug Health Services at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital – says debate around medicinal cannabis should not be confused with separate moves to legalise the use of ‘recreational’ marijuana.

Medicinal cannabis is the term used to refer to the therapeutic use of cannabis and its constituents. Cannabinoids are the chemical components of cannabis. Cannabidiol is a cannabinoid that has possible uses including for spasticity and pain in multiple sclerosis, cancer-associated nausea and vomiting, cancer pain and HIV neuropathy.

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Registration deadline today : 30/11/2015 :

Pharmacists need to renew their registration today to avoid paying a late fee.

Renewal applications received by AHPRA after the 30 November registration expiry date will incur a late payment fee in addition to the annual renewal fee.

Pharmacists whose application for renewal of general registration is received on time, or during the following one month late period, can continue practising while their application is processed.

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