The week in review


Ian Carr. Image courtesy Channel Nine.

Pharmacy slammed for CMs, vitamin vending machines hit Melbourne, “steroid phobia” and more…

Pharmacists often give misinformation about steroid use in eczema, contributing to “steroid phobia”, dermatologists said on Monday. President of the Australasian College of Dermatologists, Associate Professor Chris Baker, said that there is “significant misinformation” about the use of steroid creams to treat eczema in children.

A Channel Nine news story has slammed pharmacy for complementary medicine “kickbacks”, the AJP wrote on Thursday. The story, “Kickbacks scandal rocks pharmacy industry,” claimed “trusted pharmacists” were being pressured to upsell certain products with kickbacks from suppliers – however the Guild responded that the story only referred to unremarkable commercial arrangements.

Results from an AJP poll revealed most respondents planned to keep using MedsASSIST despite the upscheduling decision regarding OTC codeine products. And in an accompanying opinion piece, Jarrod McMaugh argued that it’s more important than ever to keep using the system.

People can now purchase vitamins, perfumes, medicines, soft drink and more from vending machines that have opened in Melbourne. Let us know what you think about the concept in our poll.

New research by UTS has also revealed that S3 advertising is unlikely to lead to inappropriate use of medicine, bolstering ASMI’s platform to get S3 advertising restrictions relaxed.

The Guild is currently at loggerheads with the Pharmacy Review, with a new battleground over tax information set to ignite. A number of Guild members have expressed concern that the review panel was seeking information from the Australian Tax Office, raising privacy and business confidentiality concerns, AJP believes. 

And an ABC News story about political donations got the Pharmacy Guild riled up – the organisation called for the ABC to withdraw its “completely false” suggestion that it donated money to the Labor party to achieve a specific outcome on PBS co-payments.

Victorian health minister Jill Hennessy announced the tender process for the next seven Supercare pharmacies, and in the process lauded the current Supercare pharmacies for their role in November’s thunderstorm asthma event. And the PSA made big changes to its Code of Ethics for pharmacists following a comprehensive review.

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