2018 highlights for community pharmacy

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The Pharmacy Guild has looked back on 2018 as well as towards 2019, signalling a busy year for pharmacy with the Federal election and likely start of 7CPA negotiations

Pharmacy Guild Executive Director David Quilty has taken stock of the member organisation’s achievements over the past year in the last edition of Forefront for 2018.

He said some of the Guild’s 2018 highlights for community pharmacy include:

• The passage of legislation to make the Pharmacy Location Rules permanent as well as the negotiation of changes to the Rules.

• The completion of the Diabetes Screening Pharmacy Trial.

• The negotiation and commencement of the Chronic Pain MedsCheck Trial.

• The recent roll-out of the Community Pharmacy in Health Care Homes Trial.

• Mid-year increases in funding for Dose Administration Aids and Staged Supply, which the Guild says has enabled community pharmacies to provide these services to more patients.

• “Significant headway” in addressing exclusive direct supply through the new Community Service Obligation guidelines and AstraZeneca discontinuing its exclusive arrangements.

• Confirmation of the pharmacy ownership rules in the Queensland Parliamentary inquiry with proceedings in the NSW Supreme Court also underway.

• An increasing number of Australians getting their flu shots in community pharmacies, along with a broadening of the vaccines that community pharmacists can administer and a COAG commitment to a nationally consistent approach to pharmacist administered vaccination.

• The majority of community pharmacies registering for the My Health Record.

• Significant progress with Real Time Prescription Monitoring with Safe Script in Victoria underway and the national alerting system contract awarded to Fred IT.

• Another highly successful APP conference, held in May due to the Commonwealth Games, with Southcity Pharmacy from Wagga Wagga the 2018 Pharmacy of the Year, and both Health Minister Greg Hunt and Shadow Health Minister Catherine King providing keynote speeches.

• During 2018, the Guild undertook strategic analysis and market research into community pharmacy as part of the development of its Community Pharmacy 2025 future blueprint, culminating in the release of the CP2025 Framework for Change, which can be found here.

However Mr Quilty says it is clear there is much more work to be done and that 2019 will be a vital one for the community pharmacy sector.

“As I say every year, the Guild’s work is never done and 2019 promises to be very busy and important for the future of community pharmacies with the Federal election, the likely commencement of the negotiation of the Seventh Community Pharmacy Agreement and ongoing efforts to maximise the role of community pharmacies as an integral part of the broader primary health system,” said Mr Quilty.

He also highlighted the work of community pharmacists, especially in the run up to Christmas and the summer holidays which can be the busiest time of the year for those in the healthcare sector.

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