The week in review

A lot can happen in just one week in Australia’s pharmacy sector…

This week, AHPRA released its annual report and we got a look at the notification figures: only 6% were about pharmacists. AHPRA’s also checking on advertising compliance, and the Pharmacy Board has a new Chair, Brett Simmonds.

After a series of complaints by stakeholders including Shadow Health Minister Catherine King, Health Minister Greg Hunt announced there would be further changes made to tighten up security around My Health Record.

FIP launched a Workforce Development Hub, with two Aussies set to play a prominent role. The PSA and SHPA are lobbying Victorian branches of parties on all sides of politics to allow pharmacists to help improve patient care, ahead of the November 24 election. And new NPS MedicineWise CEO Steve Morris discussed changes to the medicines shortages reporting system.

We looked at the figures on under-copayment scripts. We examined changes to the administration of pharmacy approvals. We discussed the uptake of new and expanded 6CPA programs.  And we shared a hilarious review of Chemist Warehouse and its marketing and ranging, penned by Kiwi journalist Alex Casey.

And we learned the alarming news that a GP, Brian Holder, is on trial for the attempted murder of a pharmacist, Kelly Akehurst, after she reported him to AHPRA for authorising multiple identical prescriptions for large amounts of medications containing benzodiazepines and codeine. Our thoughts are with Ms Akehurst and if readers are distressed by this story, they can talk to the Pharmacists’ Support Service on 1300 244 910.

Lastly, if you’re an innovative pharmacist – or know someone who is – it’s not too late to nominate for the 2018 UTS Innovative Pharmacist of the Year award: go here for more information.

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