The week in review

It’s been a busy week in pharmacy, as other health professionals continue to discuss the role of pharmacists

GPs are still talking about the roles of pharmacists: this week Dr Ines Rio wrote in Vicdoc that while she saw great value in non-dispensing pharmacists in GP surgeries, but that the dispensing and independent services model fragmented health care. AMA national president Dr Tony Bartone slammed recent comments by Pharmacy Guild NSW president David Heffernan, calling them a “cynical attempt to bolster the retail presence of guild members, regardless of the impact on healthcare”. And we took a look at the AMA’s pre-Budget submission.

Meanwhile the Guild’s David Quilty said that the current provisions for medicines access in emergency situations are inadequate and highlighted by the recent bushfire and flood disasters.

We looked at how pharmacists can aid in safe and appropriate use of opioid analgesics; we heard from MP Julian Hill, who says pharmacists should be notified when a medicine is prescribed off-label; and we examined the My Health Record opt-out numbers (more than 2.5 million Australians have opted out by 31 January 2019).

We examined the value a residential aged care pharmacist could provide, as well as how many Australians are accessing unapproved medicinal cannabis. We heard that intranasal naloxone is now available in Australia.

The Epic Pharmacy Group announced that it’s introduced a paid parental leave policy; EBOS announced a solid first half ahead of the commencement of its contract with Chemist Warehouse; and the ACT is set to see the second ever Australian pill testing trial, at April’s Groovin the Moo festival.

And congratulations to Discount Drug Stores, which took out the pharmacy section in Roy Morgan‘s 2018 Customer Satisfaction Awards!

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