The week in review

AJP was back covering all things pharmacy this week, including reports that some pharmacists are battling ‘extreme workloads’ that are leading to errors

We hope all our readers had a lovely Christmas and New Year season, although of course holidays never seem to last quite long enough!

Heading into the new year, the extension of pharmacist-administered vaccines to include dTpa and MMR vaccines, and the lowering of age to 16 years, rolled out across NSW on 1 January.

The AMA took another swipe at pharmacists over the Queensland inquiry proposal that they should be able to dispense some medications without a prescription. Leaders in the industry responded with a call to focus on collaboration rather than criticism.

In the wake of recent tragic drug-related deaths of young people at music festivals, pharmacy student group NAPSA put out a release in support of pill testing at festivals and fixed public locations.

The Victorian government announced that The Alfred Hospital would become the sole service to provide the storage, preparation and dispensing medications for Victorians who make the choice to access voluntary assisted dyingwe interviewed Alfred Health Director of Pharmacy Michael Dooley about the service.

Over the holidays, the Federal Government announced a 19-month extension of the Health Care Homes program, which will now run until 30 June 2021.

A WA pharmacy owner was convicted, fined and reprimanded for selling a prohibited drug to a man known to police – but managed to escape jail time.

We looked at the current debate over the provision of Consumer Medicine Information leaflets.

UK research showed some pharmacists don’t feel recognised as registered healthcare professionals, with some similarities here in Australia.

And we heard from the Pharmacy Council of NSW about the pressures some pharmacists are under with “extreme workloads”, such as high script numbers (up to 400-500 per day) with only a single pharmacist on duty.

The PSA responded to the account by saying it will be surveying PSA members “so we can understand workload pressures associated with the dispensing of medicines within community pharmacy, as well as desired workloads to ensure safe and effective dispensing of medicines.”

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