40 agents of digital change

Adam Phillips (SA), Joanne Wilson (ACT), and Nader Mitri (Vic)

Community, hospital, and academic pharmacists have formed a Pharmacists Digital Health Leaders Network to enhance use of My Health Record by pharmacists and pharmacies

The 40 network members will support local pharmacists in their area to engage with and use My Health Records through digital health workshops and education events.

Pharmaceutical Society of Australia National President Dr Shane Jackson says that the PSA, the Pharmacy Guild of Australia and the Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Australia handpicked the network members as positive agents of change.

“The nominated pharmacists are thought leaders and subject matter experts who will bring their skills, knowledge, and experience gained from working in pharmacy and the wider healthcare industry to the Pharmacists Digital Health Leaders Network,” Dr Jackson says.

“They will advise on the meaningful use of the My Health Record by providing guidance to pharmacists about how to and when to use the My Health Record System.”

Pharmacy Guild National President George Tambassis says it is essential that community pharmacies are involved.

“As the most accessible health professionals, particularly in rural and regional areas, it is vital that community pharmacists embrace My Health Record in the interests of their patients and collaborative quality health care,” Mr Tambassis says.

SHPA CEO Kristin Michaels says the national expansion of My Health Record in 2018 will bring opportunities to improve transitions of care arrangements and pharmacy practice development.

“Hospital pharmacists are increasingly completing the medication summary sections of patient’s discharge summaries, providing a full, updated list of patient’s medicines, as well as the clinical rationale for the initiation, cessation or dose adjustment of medicines,” she says.

“The expansion of My Health Record in pharmacy practice will empower patients’ agency in their own health care. The new data streams will also enable innovative hospital pharmacists to better understand the patients they provide care for, and to tailor their clinical services appropriately to reduce preventable readmissions to hospital.”

Dr Steve Hambleton, Deputy Chair of the Australian Digital Health Agency’s My Health Record Expansion Program, said that the Agency and the pharmacy sector recognises the important role that pharmacists have in contributing current and accurate medicines information to people’s My Heath Record.

Rob Farrier (SA), Sheryn Phillips (NSW), and Peter Roberts (NSW)

“My Heath Record can empower pharmacists to deliver safer and more efficient care by providing real-time access to usable, useful, and reliable medicine and broader health information. This in turn will help them support safer use of those medicines so their patents can achieve better health outcomes,” Dr Hambleton says.

Agency CEO Tim Kelsey agreed and says the network is an important link between the Agency and the pharmacy profession.

“The Pharmacists Digital Health Leaders Network will provide the expertise and leadership needed to achieve widespread adoption of the My Health Record System in pharmacy and increase awareness in the wider community,” Mr Kelsey says.

The network members met recently in Sydney where they discussed My Heath Record registration and training options, providing expert advice to their nominating organisations, and supporting Primary Health Network information sessions.

Chris Braithwaite, a pharmacist at the Galambila Aboriginal Health Service in NSW. He said that Indigenous people are often on the move so My Health Record is incredibly useful.

“My Health Record is a powerful tool for Improving the efficiency and effectiveness of our pharmacists’ care,” Mr Braithwaite says.


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