The week in review

Margaret and John Millington at the SafeScript launch with Victorian Health Minister Jill Hennessy.
Margaret and John Millington at the SafeScript launch with Victorian Health Minister Jill Hennessy.

It’s been a mixed bag of news in the pharmacy sector this week, as discussion of the aged care sector continues, hospital pharmacy was under the spotlight and a focus on cancer

Hospital pharmacists came to the fore this week, as those employed by the ACT public sector complained of workload and culture issues; the SHPA responded by saying that pharmacist-to-bed ratios matter.

Meanwhile, the country’s first comprehensive real-time monitoring system, SafeScript, was launched in Victoria as one PHN implements it now, ahead of a planned statewide rollout next year. And a new round of price cuts took place on the first of the month.

We took a look at pharmacy university course ratings, graduate employment and salary; heard from FIP on biologics switching; and learned that the next steps towards the Health Care Homes community pharmacy trial are being taken. The TGA announced some schedule changes. We heard about a novel vision of the white-market future of currently-illicit drugs by harm minimisation stakeholder Matt Noffs, and Canadian pharmacists discussed the importance of referring to “full scope” of practice… not “expanded scope”.

We spoke to cancer survivor Jessica Chapman-Goetz, who wants to help inspire pharmacists to support their patients with cancer; and looked at a UK study which suggested better engagement with pharmacists could help steer patients towards an earlier cancer diagnosis.

There was good news regarding a reduction in genital warts among the cohort offered HPV vaccination; not-such-good news regarding young people’s motivation to use e-cigarettes; and anaesthetists reprised their call for tighter restrictions on cough mixtures which contain pholcodine.

The issue of residential aged care, as well as how pharmacists can help, continues to be discussed, by the Guild‘s Anthony Tassone and David Quilty, as well as regular AJP contributor Karalyn Huxhagen.

And if you’re in NSW, the ACT, Victoria, Tasmania or South Australia, don’t forget to wind your clocks forward an hour on Sunday morning… and it’s always a good time to check the batteries in your smoke alarm.

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