The PSA has released a position paper recognising the growing use of OTC analgesics containing codeine in the community, and expressing concern with the rising levels of harm associated with their inappropriate use.
The paper, Minimising harm from the inappropriate use of over the counter analgesics, stresses that PSA is committed to supporting pharmacists to provide solutions to consumers seeking to manage pain and addiction issues.
National President of the PSA, Grant Kardachi, says PSA supports consumers continuing to have access to OTC analgesics with the advice of a pharmacist, as pharmacists are well equipped to assist consumers with appropriate pain management options in accordance with Quality Use of Medicines principles.
“PSA calls for the implementation of a national real-time recording and reporting system,” he says.
“Regardless of jurisdictional requirements, PSA supports best practice and encourages pharmacists to record all sales of Pharmacist Only medicines in the pharmacy’s dispensing system.
“PSA continues to strongly promote QUM and responsible self-medication. PSA supports this advocacy with continuing professional development and practice support resources to inform pharmacists’ skills in pain management and addiction care.”
Kardachi says these principles apply equally to all drugs with a potential for addiction, whether prescribed by a doctor, or accessed from a pharmacist.
PSA has developed an extensive range of practice support resources including the existing Pain Management Pharmacy Support Resource and professional guidelines for the supply of codeine-containing analgesics (revised for APF23).
In addition, a leaflet alerting consumers to the dangers of inappropriate use of combination codeine pain relievers titled Using codeine pain relievers safely, will be made available shortly.