A decision to allow trained pharmacists in Tasmania to administer influenza vaccines to adults has been welcomed by the PSA.
Under changes to Tasmanian health regulations announced yesterday, trained pharmacists will now be able to administer flu vaccines in approved sites across Tasmania.
“After all the hard work by PSA, it’s wonderful to see that local pharmacists will be now able to vaccinate – not only in community pharmacy but also at general practices and other approved sites for vaccination,” says PSA Tasmanian Branch President Rachel Dienaar.
Pharmacists wishing to administer flu vaccines will need to undergo appropriate training to ensure they have the knowledge and skills to both deliver the vaccine and identify and treat any possible side effects.
In another major boost for the pharmacy sector, demand for pharmacist immunisation training has soared across Australia, according to the latest vaccination education statistics from the PSA.
Around 1260 pharmacists registered for PSA training from the middle of 2014 to February 1, 2016, in the wake of recent legislative changes in several states, enabling pharmacists to deliver high-quality immunisation services in pharmacies.
The PSA training courses, run in Victoria, SA, WA, NSW and Queensland, are based on the training used internationally by more than 150,000 pharmacists and in the successful Queensland Pharmacy Immunisation Pilot.
The PSA’s vaccination training program comprises two parts: online pre-reading, and face-to-face workshops, which have been held across the country.
PSA spokesperson on immunisation Professor Lisa Nissen says: “The PSA has been a leader in advocating for pharmacists to deliver immunisations following the success of the high-profile immunisation trial in Queensland.
“Pharmacist-delivered immunisation is a very positive development for health delivery in Australia and will help to vaccinate cohorts of the community who previously would not have been vaccinated.
“Pharmacists also play an important role in promoting immunisation and reducing the impact of vaccine-preventable disease in the community.”
PSA National President Joe Demarte says: “In the lead-up to the flu season, we are expecting many more pharmacists to register for immunisation training this year, which is an important professional development tool.
“The PSA supports immunisation as both a public health program and as a means of managing an individual’s health.”