It’s all about the service

Catherine Bronger Gerard Stevens
Catherine Bronger seeks advice from Gerard Stevens, Webstercare founder

Securing pay for services is vital to the profession’s future and ensuring young pharmacist retention, says rising Guild identity

Pharmacy’s future viability requires it to find ways of tying increased funding for professional services into the next community pharmacy agreements says new NSW Pharmacy Guild committee member Catherine Bronger.

Ms Bronger was recently elected to the NSW branch committee of the Guild, and is currently seeking election as one of the state’s two National Committee delegates

Ensuring she has a voice into the negotiating of the next agreement to ensure a greater emphasis on proper financial recognition for delivering the highest quality professional services is a key plank of her agenda.    

Too often pharmacy has regarded activities that are simply health promotion work as being services, Ms Bronger says.

“While the next agreement must obviously continue to ensure a viable dispensary, the future lies in other areas such as providing diabetes support and education, chronic pain management, asthma management, etc, “ she told AJP.

“My vision for the future is we’ll be doing a lot of screening, we’ll be adding more services beyond diabetes into specialty MedsCheck areas – such as chronic pain or asthma medschecks – and we’ll be moving into alternate areas of payment.

As a former NAPSA vice-president (2004/5) and with recent early career pharmacist experience herself, Ms Bronger says she is acutely aware of the importance of developing a service model to boost retention of and work satisfaction among ECPs.

Another core issue Ms Bronger sees requiring action is on codeine. She says the time is now right, in the wake of the recent Real-Time Monitoring announcement, to launch a major consumer campaign to advise of the issues resulting from upscheduling.

“In our pharmacies we’re giving out letters and flyers and we’re advocating strongly for the ‘Prescription except when’ model advocated by the Guild,” she says.

Ms Bronger says as an owner she brings ground-floor experience and knowledge of pharmacy, plus she works as a diabetes educator, allowing her knowledge of the ways to introduce services into the pharmacy setting.

“I’ve met industry leaders who are experts in their field such as Bruce Annabel, Peter Saccasan, Gerard Stevens on home healthcare, Sue Muller on workforce issues, so I’m looking to consult widely to develop the best advice to bring to the negotiating table.

AJP are currently seeking your vote to find the 10 Rising Stars of pharmacy from the ranks of early career pharmacists. Click here to vote


Previous Chronic heart failure growing
Next Managing minor ailments: a global snapshot

NOTICE: It can sometimes take awhile for comment submissions to go through, please be patient.


  1. Greg Kyle

    These comments continue the myopia that plagues pharmacy proffered by the guild and their representatives. The future of pharmacy depends on pharmacists. The future of pharmacists depends on so much more than what is and can be offered in a retail environment. The focus should be on what pharmacists can offer to the health system and individuals. Then we can have a range of viable career options (plural) for young pharmacists. These would include options that won’t saddle our young pharmacists with huge debts to break into self-employment options.

    • bernardlou1

      Dear Greg

      What do you suggest?
      The Guild job is to look after community pharmacy
      And the membership.

      IF you are serious about doing anything why don’t you get started and establish something instead of complaining.

  2. Peter Crothers

    It’s all about care actually. Pharmacy is currently overly transactional. Not only script dispensing, but clinical interventions and even services like MedsChecks and HMRs tend just to be a series of transactions each attracting a fee but not necessarily linked together in a patient-centric, longitudinal and documented way that allows pharmacists to take their share of responsibility for achieving defined drug therapy outcomes, Care delivery requires things that service delivery does not, such a single integrated clinical record keeping systems that are focused in the first instance on the clinical patient relationship and that deal with all the transactions (dispensings, CIs, service deliveries) as components of the relationship, rather than an end in themselves. Care delivery based around ongoing lifelong patient relationships – only possible in a community pharmacy setting by the way – is capable of being not only valuable, but also unique, not easily imitated by other providers and hard for others such as governments to appropriate the profits of – thus making it a source of true sustainable competitive advantage for pharmacists – whereas ‘service delivery’ outside a care relationship will never have that robustness. In my opinion.

  3. bernardlou1

    So now Ms Bronger is advocating for a consumer campaign that is so interested since during the Monday night members briefing someone else asked about it, I think her and is Adele and she is a committee member. She should be stealing someone’s else line.

Leave a reply