The Board of the PSA has issued a call to action to its members to ensure the Sixth Community Pharmacy Agreement provides the best possible outcomes for consumers and the profession.
In an unprecedented move reflecting the Society’s concern about ensuring a positive outcome for consumers, government and pharmacy in the 6CPA, the PSA Board has urged its members to seek meetings with their local Members of Parliament and Senators to voice their concern.
The PSA Board has reminded its members that the Government needs to bring certainty to patients’ access to medicines and pharmacists’ professional services across Australia, and also to address issues raised in the Australian National Audit Office report.
It says a robust and publically accountable 6CPA is essential.
The PSA has been working with the Pharmacy Guild to develop options for the 6CPA, including the need for appropriate dispensing remuneration for pharmacies plus a significant increase to develop/deliver professional services and programs.
The Board has suggested that among the issues its members may wish to discuss with their politicians are:
- A reasonable 6CPA is required to ensure consumer needs are met through a viable community pharmacy network, with pharmacists delivering high-quality services and continued access by Australians to essential medications.
- There have been substantial savings generated through the last CPA, and at least $1.4 billion is required in Part B of the next agreement (the section dealing with professional services and programs), as well as a stable dispensing remuneration base to ensure continued QUM for patients.
- The recent ANAO report raised a number of issues that should be addressed in the 6CPA. The PSA has offered to assist Government address many of these issues, to ensure delivery of better outcomes for patients, for example:
- A more effective evaluation framework and a stronger approach to the collection of meaningful patient outcomes – to ensure public accountability in the 6CPA
- Assistance to pharmacists in actually implementing services – to ensure patients at the grass roots actually receive quality services
- Consideration of pharmacists’ role in achieving cost effectiveness and efficiencies in the broader health system – for example through improved GP/pharmacists collaboration, pharmacy minor ailment services and progressing patient eHealth solutions.