td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1748 [post_author] => 40 [post_date] => 2018-06-18 14:50:59 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-06-18 04:50:59 [post_content] => [vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]The Dose Administration Aids (DAA) program will be available to 70,000 more patients each year through community pharmacies, with the Federal Government announcing increased funding to expand the successful program. PSA National President Dr Shane Jackson welcomed the increased availability of DAA services able to be provided within community pharmacies. 'Lifting the amount of funding, and supporting services that can be provided by pharmacists such as DAAs will have a significant impact on improving medication adherence, and improve health outcomes for patients who take multiple medicines,' Dr Jackson said. 'There is no doubt that many services provided by pharmacists can improve medicines management, and we look forward to a similar expansion of other existing programs such as Home Medicines Review, MedsCheck and other Community Pharmacy Agreement programs in the future.' PSA supports pharmacists to implement the DAA program with the Guidelines for pharmacists providing dose administration aid services, along with an online learning module and quick reference tool at PSA’s 6CPA Resource Hub. 'Dose Administration Aids are a substantial part of our professional offering to the local community, so we’re excited to hear that this program will be expanded to assist even more people in Burnie,' said Heather Wild, co-owner of healthSAVE Wilkinson’s Pharmacy in Burnie, Tasmania. 'We are also very pleased that the government is recognising and showing support for this significant part of what pharmacies offer to their communities,' she said. The $340 million announcement was made on 14 June by Minister for Health Greg Hunt, as part of an $825 million allocation over three years for community pharmacies to support and improve Australians’ access to medicines. [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][/vc_column][/vc_row] [post_title] => DAA program to be expanded in community pharmacies [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => daa-program-to-be-expanded-in-community-pharmacies [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-06-18 14:27:04 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-06-18 04:27:04 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/?p=1748 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [title_attribute] => DAA program to be expanded in community pharmacies [title] => DAA program to be expanded in community pharmacies [href] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/daa-program-to-be-expanded-in-community-pharmacies/ [module_atts:td_module:private] => Array ( ) [td_review:protected] => Array ( [td_primary_cat] => 21 ) [is_review:protected] => [post_thumb_id:protected] => 1749 )
td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1733 [post_author] => 12 [post_date] => 2018-06-18 13:00:34 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-06-18 03:00:34 [post_content] => [vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]Seeking greater remuneration and a different working life, some community pharmacists find themselves considering the leap to hospitals. So what do they need to know? Transitioning from community to hospital pharmacy might seem like a daunting leap into the unknown, but it offers early career pharmacists (ECPs) a great opportunity to experience a variety of different roles that will help them quickly discover their niche. ‘I know it’s not easy for everyone to give another area of pharmacy a crack,’ said pharmacist Taren Gill, who made the switch to Orange District Health Service in 2014. ‘But I would encourage ECPs to take lots of different roles early on to see what they like and what they don’t like.’ Hospital pharmacies Hospital pharmacy is delivered in two different sectors in Australia – public and private hospitals, and Michelle Lynch, PSA Board Member and National Hospital Pharmacy Manager at Ramsay Health Care, has a background in both. She said while the application in standards and consistency in public and private hospitals differed wildly a couple of decades ago, they’re becoming more and more similar over time. That said, differences still exist. ‘The public hospitals, which are generally where you’d do your internship, have 600-plus beds. So they offer a great learning environment for pharmacists to find their niche,’ Ms Lynch said. Public hospitals have an internal pharmacy department that delivers the pharmacy services to patients as part of the hospital’s infrastructure. Private hospitals are generally serviced by an outsourced third-party provider that is contracted to deliver pharmacy services. Otherwise private hospitals own and operate their in-house pharmacy departments. What hospital pharmacy entails A typical day in a hospital pharmacy is multi-faceted and divided into two main parts – technical and clinical, Ms Lynch said. Activities can include ensuring medication is supplied to the relevant parts of the wards, performing clinical pharmacy activities in the wards, ensuring the appropriateness and safety of medications prescribed, and interacting with ward nursing and medical staff to discuss patient needs. It can also include discharge counselling, participation in quality activities, management meetings, and governance processes, she said. Ms Gill said the first shift of the morning in the dispensary is often very busy because that’s when overnight charts from the wards have been faxed through. ‘In hospital pharmacy, you run your own race. You really need to prioritise and manage your time appropriately, especially because your patient may not be standing in front of you. They’re likely in a bed somewhere,’ she said. Hospital pharmacy as a career Ms Lynch said hospital pharmacy can sometimes be perceived as a more appealing career option because it provides the opportunity to be directly part of a multi-disciplinary healthcare team. Ms Gill added that there is also very good professional development in the hospital system. ‘Pay can be better in the public sector too. That’s not a lie. We know that remuneration is a big issue in community pharmacy at the moment,’ she said. Ms Gill said hospital pharmacy might also be ideal for parents with young children, as it offers public holidays and set rosters. ‘When you work in a team of many pharmacists, if your child is sick and you have to call in sick, you can,’ Ms Gill said. Aspiring hospital pharmacists When Ms Lynch is hiring, she looks for a pharmacist who has passion for patient care and is a great communicator. ‘Gone are the days when the pharmacist can be in the background, in the shadows. They need to engage with patients, engage with other health professionals such as nurses and medical staff,’ Ms Lynch said. Ms Gill said when she was hiring in the hospital pharmacy setting she looked for pharmacists who possessed plenty of enthusiasm. ‘I am after pharmacists who were looking to quality-improve situations and add value. And someone who’s going to fit into the existing team is really important,’ Ms Gill said. How to maximise your chances Ms Lynch said entry can be competitive in both public and private hospitals. ‘Public hospital pharmacy positions are government funded and the availability of these is obviously then dependent on funding,’ she said. ‘Private hospital pharmacy positions are dependent on the service model engaged and the acuity, and the patient cohort at the private hospital.’ To increase your chances of landing a hospital pharmacy position, PSA Project Pharmacist Himali Kaniyal says PSA offers a range of resources, including a mentoring program and a broad range of CPD resources– including in depth clinical content and a resources hub (see Case study 2). ‘You can have a mentor as a guide to support you with your career. And PSA’s suite of clinical CPD materials to help you update your clinical knowledge,’ she said. To further boost your efforts, Ms Lynch recommended first talking to peers and mentors who already work in the hospital pharmacy space. ‘Develop an understanding of the hospital pharmacy work environment and attend relevant seminars or workshops,’ she said. Ms Gill pointed out that hospital pharmacy has a much more formal application process than community pharmacy. ‘So you need to communicate very clearly in your interview,’ Ms Gill said. ‘When you’re asked a question, always give real-life examples to demonstrate how you handled a situation.’ Also, make sure you address everything in the question, added Ms Gill, especially as the questions can be lengthy. ‘You can actually take a pen and paper in with you to write down the key points in the question. Don’t be afraid to stop and ask them to repeat a part,’ Ms Gill said. Rural opportunities If you’re located in a country town, Ms Gill recommended making sure that the hospital pharmacy director knows who you are. ‘Get to know them and understand a bit more about the department. Then seek roles in community pharmacy positions that may help you,’ she said. ‘Then, when a position comes up, if it’s in a country town, the director will probably give you a call.’ Ms Gill said rural hospital pharmacies could be a great place to get a foot in the door – or to even fast-track your career. For example, Ms Gill landed her first role as deputy director of Orange District Health Service (see Case study 1). ‘Rural hospitals can also offer lifestyle benefits and can be a friendlier workplace,’ Ms Gill said. Hone your niche If it all sounds a bit daunting, rest assured that the fundamentals of being a pharmacist apply across all areas of practice – whether that be community or hospital, Ms Lynch said. ‘People shouldn’t be afraid. If they want to learn what a hospital pharmacy environment is like, then ask questions, see if you can do some work experience, and talk to people who work in that environment,’ she said. ‘There is scope and opportunity to develop different expertise in various clinical areas depending on the hospital.’
Case study 1: Making the switchWhen pharmacist Taren Gill made the leap into hospital pharmacy four years ago, she couldn’t help but notice a bit of an Us vs Them mentality. She had just landed the highly coveted role of deputy director at Orange District Health Service, and had the task of proving her credentials. ‘The culture was a little bit difficult at first, if I’m being completely honest. There was a bit of “oh, she’s a community pharmacist, what does she know?”’ recalled Ms Gill. ‘But I gained the respect of my team eventually.’ That’s because, as Ms Gill put it, ‘any good pharmacist out there should not be worried about their clinical skills when going into hospital pharmacy’. ‘My advice to anyone wanting to transition is just to have confidence in your own clinical ability. We’re all doing our continuing education,’ she said. Last year she returned to community pharmacy and she now happily owns and operates her own community pharmacy in Maryborough, Victoria. That said, Ms Gill is very glad she made the initial switch, as it assisted in the development of her career. ‘It gave me four years to make myself feel really confident in managerial positions. It was a great experience and I learned so much,’ she said. ‘It’s definitely made me a better clinician and eliminated wondering “what if?”.’
Case study 2: How PSA can helpPSA offers a wide range of programs that can help you land a highly competitive hospital pharmacy gig, said PSA Project Pharmacist Himali Kaniyal. For starters, PSA’s Mentoring Program matches mentors with mentees and provides six months of complimentary access to Mentoring Support Services through the Mentoring Education and Resources Hub (MERHub). The MERHub includes e-learning modules, fact sheets, mentoring conversation maps, tools, templates and global resource links. Next, said Ms Kaniyal, PSA provides you with a broad range of clinical CPD resources to help you update your clinical knowledge. CPD is an ongoing, cyclical program of quality improvement that will help enhance your competencies in current and future roles. Ms Kaniyal added that PSA further supports its members by providing an Advancing Practice Resource Hub with tools and templates to assist members. ‘Utilising these resources can help strengthen your application,’ she said. Finally, there’s the Career Essentials Program, said Ms Kaniyal. ‘This program can support you to improve on your non-clinical skills in areas such as collaboration,’ she said.
td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1693 [post_author] => 12 [post_date] => 2018-06-12 12:27:27 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-06-12 02:27:27 [post_content] => [vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]Community pharmacies must continue to evolve if they wish to thrive into the future. What does that look like in practice? ‘Fifty cigarettes a day for 50 years’, Canberra pharmacist Ben Jackson recalled of a 65-year-old patient who used to frequent his pharmacy. ‘He’d chain smoke to the point where he’d have half an inch to go and would light the next one up.’ Over three years, Mr Jackson patiently stepped the man through the Quitline education program whenever he came in, planting seeds in his mind until the desire to quit finally took hold. Mr Jackson, doesn’t just see himself as a pharmacy retailer. He sees himself as a personal coach for people looking to quit smoking. ‘The amount of profit we make from those patches is quite minimal anyway. So it’s not so much that – it’s about curing them,’ said Mr Jackson. Across the country, growing numbers of community pharmacists are exploring new services to offer their patients. And many, like Mr Jackson, would like to see a structured government funding model in place for pharmacies that ease the burden on the public health system. ‘For smoking cessation, there’s zero funding whatsoever. MedsChecks and Diabetes MedsChecks are the only funding available at the moment,’ he said. ‘We want to be paid accordingly.’ The evolution of pharmacy Where to next is a question that is increasingly occupying pharmacy’s keenest minds, but it’s not the first time the profession’s role has evolved, of course. ‘Over the past few decades, the profession has shifted from a manufacturer and supplier role to one that aims to improve the quality use of medicines,’ said Bob Buckham, PSA’s Manager, Strategic Policy. At the turn of the century, the National Health Amendment Bill was legislated, with an Agreement that allowed pharmacies to include professional services as part of their forward-dispensing model. ‘That was 18 years ago. We’ve got to shift our mindset forward again,’ said Dr Chris Freeman, PSA National Vice-President. ‘With negotiations about to start for the upcoming Agreement, we’ve got to think about how we can reduce reliance on the front of shop, to how pharmacies might be better supported providing clinical services.’ Because, Mr Buckham adds, evidence is mounting that pharmacists who remain focused on traditional supply models are starting to feel the squeeze of shrinking profitability. ‘There’s potential that it’s only going to get worse,’ Mr Buckham said, ‘so there’s a real need to shift from that being their only focus.’ Chicken or the egg? Many pharmacies are starting to offer innovative services outside of structured funding models, such as Capital Chemist Wanniassa’s Pharmafriend program (see case studies below). Like many expanded pharmacy service offerings, patients aren’t charged for Pharmafriend. Instead, the pharmacy reaps the benefits of customer loyalty and referrals. Shelley Crowther, PSA Manager, Health Sector Engagement, said that while it can be difficult for pharmacies to expand services when there’s a dearth of structured funding models in place, services need to be demonstrated on a smaller scale before funding is ever granted on a larger scale. ‘There’s a lot of health sector reform going on at the moment. And there is a little bit of a feeling of the chicken or the egg,’ Ms Crowther said. ‘But if you don’t get involved, and instead wait for someone to fund something that doesn’t exist, then it’s not going to happen.’ Primary Health Networks (PHNs) Introduced by the Department of Health in 2015, the PHN initiative was established to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of medical services for patients, as well as improving coordination of care. It opened the door for pharmacies to collaborate with PHNs, which in turn, has increased awareness of the vital roles pharmacies play in communities. ‘Inroads have been made,’ said Dr Freeman. ‘Some of the PHNs are trying innovative models of service delivery within and outside community pharmacy’. For example, he said, some PHNs are trialling the role of the pharmacist in a general practice medical centre. Others are trialling minor ailment management schemes and some are tracking reductions in hospital presentations. ‘In the same breath, the government is quite prescriptive on how the PHNs spend their money,’ Dr Freeman said. One potential solution would be to allow the PHNs a greater degree of discretionary spending. ‘That must be based on their local area needs so they can fund things like mental health or smoking cessation services within the pharmacy,’ he said. Ms Crowther said, ‘It’s still reasonably early days and actually getting those kinds of measures and outcomes is something that’s going to come out over the next few years.’ Regulatory obstacles One of the biggest regulatory barriers when it comes to pharmacies increasing their scope of practice is varying legislations across states and territories, said Helen Benson, a teacher at the University of Technology Sydney. One example is vaccinations, said Ms Benson. ‘There are different laws in every state in Australia for who can immunise, and what you can immunise them with. It would be great if there was a national policy,’ she said. Inconsistencies in immunisation funding were also creating issues of equality, Mr Buckham said. ‘In Victoria pharmacies access the flu vaccine through the National Immunisation Program, whereas other states don’t.’ The next step With much work still to be done, there may be a temptation for pharmacies to sit back and see how it all plays out. As far as Dr Freeman is concerned, however, that’s not the wisest course of action. ‘To be frank, the debate is really over. There are very clear signals from the health sector and from the Federal Government that they are wanting health services to provide value for money,’ he said. ‘I completely empathise that it is difficult to get funding for these non-Agreement services, but we need to think outside the box – whether it be through PHNs, private health insurers, or disease-focused support groups. Otherwise, they’re going to be behind the eight-ball when the model does change.’ So how can a pharmacy take that first, innovative step? By taking one step back. ‘The way I’d consider doing so is stepping back, looking at what I’m currently doing, and investing some time and effort in the health needs of my local population,’ Dr Freeman said. ‘There’s some brilliant information out there about local health needs by groups such as the PHNs.’ From that information pharmacies should pick one or two services that cater towards those health needs, he said. ‘And then commit genuine time to implement those services as a whole team,’ he said. Added Ms Benson: ‘Then it’s a matter of putting yourself out there, letting your local doctors know, and seeing what networks are out there. Can you be involved with the PHN? Opportunities are out there.’ Innovative case studies in community pharmacy PHARMAFRIEND After pharmacist Kayla Lee’s father tragically took his own life, she set out to create a positive change for her community by devising a program that would help pharmacists discuss mental health issues with patients. The innovative program she developed, Pharmafriend, was put into effect in 2016 at Capital Chemist Wanniassa, ACT. ‘It’s so important to have a mental health program in the community because one in two Australians will experience mental illness in their lifetime,’ Ms Lee said. ‘Pharmacists are the most accessible health professionals so it makes sense to ensure that they’re equipped to have these conversations.’ Last year, Ms Lee was recognised at the UTS Innovative Pharmacist of the Year Awards in Sydney, winning the top prize. ‘It has changed the lives of patients in our community and I’m excited to see where that will go with other communities,’ she said, noting that she used mental health first aid much more than regular first aid. Pharmafriend uses education resources and information packs that Ms Lee has developed. It then ensures that patients are followed up with phone support. ‘Pharmafriend uses the pharmacist’s existing scope of practice and provides support and guidance to our patients with the aim of improving compliance and engagement with evidence-based psychotherapies and treatment,’ she said. PHARMACY FIRST The UK Government has been making a big effort to put pharmacies at the forefronts of patients’ minds when they feel ill, with an innovative initiative advising patients their first port of call should be the pharmacy. The initiative is being run by the UK’s Department of Health under a more widespread ‘Stay Well This Winter’ campaign. Its aim is to encourage greater use of community pharmacy by working to integrate pharmaceutical services with the rest of their National Health Service. Here are some pro-pharmacy lines from campaign material: Feeling unwell? Don’t wait. Get advice from your nearest pharmacist. ● At the first sign of a winter illness, even if it’s just a cough or cold, get advice from your pharmacist before it gets more serious. Act quickly. ● The sooner you get advice from a pharmacist the better. Pharmacists are fully qualified to advise you on the best course of action. Another step to integrate UK community pharmacies into urgent care pathways includes referring patients in need of urgent repeat prescription medicines to community pharmacies, rather than to out-of-hours GP services.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][/vc_column][/vc_row] [post_title] => Pharmacy evolution - doing things differently [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => pharmacy-evolution-doing-things-differently [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-06-12 16:20:19 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-06-12 06:20:19 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/?p=1693 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [title_attribute] => Pharmacy evolution – doing things differently [title] => Pharmacy evolution – doing things differently [href] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/pharmacy-evolution-doing-things-differently/ [module_atts:td_module:private] => Array ( ) [td_review:protected] => Array ( [td_primary_cat] => 21 ) [is_review:protected] => [post_thumb_id:protected] => 1698 )
td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1683 [post_author] => 12 [post_date] => 2018-06-11 11:30:36 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-06-11 01:30:36 [post_content] => [vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]Public knowledge of where to access resources for patient clinical trials could be supported by pharmacists, a contributor to pharmacy policy has said. Mitch Kirkman, Development Quality Assurance Manager at Novartis and recipient of the 2008 Medicines Australia Pat Clear Award for industry relations, said for clinical trials to yield new healthcare insights as rapidly as possible, patients need to be recruited in a timely fashion. 'For pharmacists in particular, clinical trials are critical to provide the evidence of safety and efficacy of the medicines they dispense every day,' said Mr Kirkman, whose comments follow International Clinical Trials Day on May 20. Timely recruitment of patients in Australia is challenging for two main reasons, Mr Kirkman told Australian Pharmacist as part of the The National Health and Medical Research Council's Helping Our Health campaign. 'Firstly, clinical trials are currently not truly embedded into the health system in Australia, which means many patients are not offered an opportunity to take part in a clinical trial due to the lack of awareness of trials of most medical practitioners,' he said. 'This means they miss out on potential therapeutic options, especially in the cancer setting.' Secondly, patients may decline to take part in a trial when it is offered because of a lack of awareness about the potential benefits, he said. This is where pharmacists can play a role. 'Pharmacists are a very accessible and trusted source of health information for the community and they can ensure they are knowledgeable about clinical trials through watching the brief patient and researcher videos on australianclinicaltrials.gov.au,' Mr Kirkman said. He recommended pharmacists read the guide “Consumers Health Forum of Australia – Consumer Guide to Clinical Trials”, which can be provided to patients. 'It discusses the benefits and risks of taking part in a clinical trial, the importance of informed consent in clinical trials and includes questions that a consumer may ask. It was developed specifically for consumers,' he said. 'Pharmacists can also encourage patients to ask their doctor about clinical trials, this will help raise awareness of clinical trials within the medical community.' Mr Kirkman said the Australian Government’s clinical trial portal has around 16,500 visits per month, with about 7,500 searches for local clinical trials and 8,500 people subscribing to saved trial searches. 'The public interest in clinical trials is there and growing,' he said. Mr Kirkman was founding Chair of the Pharmaceuticals Industry Council (PIC) R&D Taskforce. He continues as a member of the Taskforce and is currently a member of a number of government reference groups Clinical trials statistics:
td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1626 [post_author] => 3 [post_date] => 2018-06-01 14:47:02 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-06-01 04:47:02 [post_content] => [vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]Experts address the pharmacy practice questions that arise in relation to ECP salary negotiation, GP working relationships and commencing a RMMR service. Q: I’m an ECP and have been working at the same pharmacy for two years, taking on more and more responsibility. Salary negotiations are coming up – how can I put my best foot forward? A: Among the most important things you can do to earn the pay rise you deserve are to be well-informed and to argue with reason. Start by having a clear view of what you believe you should be paid and why. Do your research and form realistic expectations. Speak to recruitment consultants and colleagues about what market rates are for your position. Most important is understanding how growth of your role, skills, experience or standard of performance justifies the need for you to earn more than you already do. What additional value do you now bring to your role? In what ways is your experience benefitting your employer? Argue with reason. Like any negotiation process, you are more likely to achieve the outcome you want if you are fair and reasonable. Keep emotion out of your arguments and focus on why you believe an increase in your remuneration is justified. If necessary, be open to exploring steps that can be taken over a period of time. Karen Gately, Director of Ryan Gately and an executive adviser on human performance and relationships. Q: How should community pharmacists be communicating with GP practices when offering minor services (eg: wound care, group education/exercise, vaccinations) to strengthen the working relationship between the two health professionals? A: Face-to-face interactions with GP practices are encouraged for community pharmacists who are offering minor services (e.g. wound care, group education/exercise, vaccinations). Evidence in areas such as medication reviews indicates that GPs are more likely to accept interventions from pharmacists presenting the information personally, rather than in written form.1 Opportunity for meetings to discuss pharmacy services and specific patient outcomes can be explored. If not a possibility, where information is presented in written form, this should be complemented with a phone call to discuss the service and/or patient results (after obtaining patient consent). When providing written information to GP practices, it is important to consider how much information needs to be provided, the language used, and how the information will be sent to ensure privacy and confidentiality of patients is maintained. In relation to specific services, it is important to discuss with staff at GP practices the purpose of the service, how it will benefit the patient, the potential outcomes of the service, how the service contributes to holistic management of the health of the patient, and to establish what it is the GP would like communicated. Other considerations may include how the service aligns with services that the GP practice provides, and how GP practice staff can refer patients to the service. Community pharmacists should be open and confident about the services they provide and the benefits of the service to the patient, as well as ensuring the service is conducted professionally, with sound procedures and protocols in place. Katie Hayes MPS, Vice President of PSA Tasmania Branch Committee. Q: I have signed a contract with the Residential Aged Care Facility to provide the RMMR service. What is considered best practice for commencing a dialogue with the GP practice that cares for the facility? A: Start your dialogue by delivering a letter to the GP practice that cares for that facility, to introduce yourself to the practice manager or nurse. Explain the service and the benefit to the practice. Take information leaflets or brochures about the service, as well as your business card. To aid a smooth referral process, you need to know the GP’s preferred method for communicating which residents have been identified for a review, and what his or her preferred process is to arrange the referral. You will also want to prompt the GP to add any questions or concerns about the medication regimen so you can address these in your report. Your report is much more likely to be read if the style is adapted to the GP’s preferred format. Some like dot points, others prefer more detail. Another consideration is that some GPs have a strong preference for the language style used. Some prefer the use of ‘consider’ or ‘options’ rather than stronger language like ‘recommend’. The GP may have a preferred style for follow up. It is frustrating when you get limited feedback, so put in place processes that improve your feedback and communication to increase your job satisfaction. Even better, you may both coordinate your visits to the RACF. Congratulations for embarking on working in RACFs. It’s a rewarding area to work in. Amy Page, PhD, MClinPharm, GCHPE, BPharm, BHSci, CGP, FPS, Adv Prac Pharm is an expert in deprescribing for the elderly.
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- Denneboom W, Dautzenberg MGH, Grol R, De Smet PAGM. Comparison of two methods for performing treatment reviews by pharmacists and general practitioners for home-dwelling elderly people. Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice 2008; 14(3):446-52.
td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1725 [post_author] => 46 [post_date] => 2018-06-21 09:18:36 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-06-20 23:18:36 [post_content] => [vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]Scenario A 70-year-old male patient is being discharged from hospital today and you note that swallowing difficulties are detailed in his case history. The dispensing pharmacist has dispensed the patient’s discharge medications and has labelled simvastatin with cautionary advisory label 21 (Special handling and disposal required – ask your pharmacist) and label A (Swallow whole do not crush or chew). You are concerned that these labels may alarm and/or confuse the patient. What should you do? Including cautionary advisory labels without counselling is not appropriate During the counselling process, the pharmacist should provide (or inform patients how to access) written information such as dispensing labels, cautionary advisory labels or Consumer Medicine Information to reinforce verbal counselling (Professional Practice Standards (PPS) criterion 8.8.7). Supplying written information such as cautionary advisory labels (CALs) without appropriate verbal counselling to explain how the information applies to the patient can lead to confusion and potential for medication misadventure. As this patient has swallowing difficulties, the use of label A could lead to the patient not taking the medicine because he is unable to swallow it whole. Removing labels 21 and A may be appropriate Pharmacists are expected to meet legislative labelling requirements and exercise professional judgement when deciding whether to omit one or more CALs for a particular patient. Use of label 21 is not required by legislation. Simvastatin is a pregnancy category D medicine and label 21 is recommended to identify the medicine as hazardous when people other than the patient (e.g. carers, family members) handle the medicine. Some hazardous medicines may not pose a significant risk if they are administered to the patient intact, but the risk can be increased if these formulations are modified (e.g. crushed). Label A is recommended for simvastatin to reduce the risk of the formulation being modified. The pharmacist should tailor counselling to the needs and understanding of the patient (PPS criterion 8.1.2). The patient is a 70-year-old male and therefore, providing he is self-administering his medicine at home, label 21 may not be required. Advice to swallow this medicine whole would not apply for this patient and therefore label A is not required. Counselling the patient about label 21 and removing label A is the most appropriate option The pharmacist should adapt available information based on informed professional judgement to tailor counselling to the needs and understanding of the patient (PPS criterion 8.1.2). This will allow the pharmacist to present the most appropriate counselling, lifestyle advice and treatment options. The patient should be asked if they self-administer their medicines. If they don’t, they should be asked who helps them administer their medicines to determine what special handling, if any, is required. Use of label 21 should be accompanied by appropriate counselling, including ways for the person administering the medicine to minimise exposure to simvastatin (especially while crushing the tablet). Because of the patient’s swallowing difficulties and the need to crush simvastatin tablets, label A should be removed. Further resources Australian Pharmaceutical Formulary and Handbook 24: Counselling and Cautionary Advisory Labels PSA gratefully acknowledges the Australian Government Department of Health for providing funding for the original development of this case study as part of the PBS Access and Sustainability Package including the Sixth Community Pharmacy Agreement.
|Relevant Professional Practice Standards:
td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1782 [post_author] => 2 [post_date] => 2018-06-21 01:56:36 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-06-20 15:56:36 [post_content] => [vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]Case scenario A doctor from the medical centre down the road has called you to ask for some advice. He would like to know your opinion on the use of medicinal cannabis for the management of drug-resistant epilepsy. In particular, he is interested in how safe and effective it is, any contraindications, and when it would be appropriate to prescribe it for a patient. Cannabis use in Australia Cannabis is the most popular recreational drug used in the world. It is estimated that 178 million people aged 15 to 64 years used cannabis at least once in 2012.1 The use of cannabis or cannabinoids to manage medical conditions is referred to as medicinal cannabis.2 There are various formulations of cannabis available in the market. Cannabis can be administered orally, sublingually or topically; it can be smoked, inhaled, mixed with food, or made into tea.3 It can be taken in herbal form, extracted naturally from the plant, gained by isomerisation of cannabidiol, or manufactured synthetically. Internationally, the commercially available prescribed cannabinoids include dronabinol capsules, nabilone capsules, and the nabiximols oromucosal spray.4 Canada and the Netherlands have government-run programs in which dedicated companies supply quality-controlled herbal cannabis. In the United States, 23 states and Washington, DC (May 2015), have introduced laws permitting the medical use of cannabis; other countries have similar laws.5 Pharmacology of medicinal cannabis The recently discovered endocannabinoid system has significantly increased our understanding of the actions of exogenous cannabis. Endocannabinoids appear to control pain, muscle tone, mood state, appetite and inflammation, among other effects. Cannabis contains more than 100 different cannabinoids and has the capacity for analgesia through neuromodulation in ascending and descending pain pathways, neuroprotection, and anti-inflammatory mechanisms.6 It is suggested that both neural and non-neural cells in injured tissues produce arachidonic acid derivatives called endocannabinoids. They modulate neural conduction of pain signals by mitigating sensitisation and inflammation through the activation of cannabinoid receptors. Endocannabinoids are produced in injured tissues through distinct biochemical pathways to suppress sensitisation and inflammation by activation of cannabinoid (CB) receptors. As a result, the biological rationale for cannabinoid administration is whole-body exposure to exogenous cannabinoids to turn on pain inhibition.7 The most well-known cannabinoids are delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), cannabidiol (CBD) and cannabinol (CBN). All cannabinoids are ligands for CB receptors. CB1 receptors are present mainly in the brain and CB2 receptors are in the immune system.8 Activation of CB1 receptors causes psychotropic effects, whereas activating CB2 receptors do not cause euphoric actions but are involved in modulating various pathologies and can therefore be used for potential therapies.8 THC is the main cannabinoid that is responsible for the euphoric feelings and psychoactive effects by cannabis. CBD does not activate CB receptors but interacts with other non-cannabinoid systems to modulate the psychoactive activity of THC. CBN is mildly psychoactive as it has a higher affinity to CB2 than CB1 receptors.9 Evidence for the use of medicinal cannabis for its current indications The Australian Government Department of Health and the New South Wales, Victorian and Queensland State Governments appointed a team from the Universities of New South Wales, Sydney and Queensland under the coordination of the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre (NDARC) to review the available clinical evidence for using medicinal cannabis. The team addressed the five conditions for which the biggest numbers of studies have been carried out:
After reading this article, pharmacists should be able to:
|Assessment questions Each question has only one correct answer. Up to 1.5 CPD CREDIT Group 2 1. Which cannabinoid is the main one responsible for the euphoric effect of cannabis? A. Delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol. B. Cannabinol. C. Cannabidiol. D. All of the above. 2. Which group of patients should not be using medicinal cannabis? A. Patients who have epilepsy. B. Patients who are on chemotherapy. C. Patients who have an anxiety disorder. D. Patients who have multiple sclerosis. 3. Which type of medicinal cannabis is TGA registered? A. Dronabinol. B. Nabiximols. C. Nabilone. D. Cannabidiol. 4. What is NOT one of the side effects of cannabis? A. Euphoria. B. Constipation. C. Dry mouth. D. Nausea. Complete your CPD online at psa.org.au/APcpd|
td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1755 [post_author] => 2 [post_date] => 2018-06-18 16:52:06 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-06-18 06:52:06 [post_content] => [vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]A small study has investigated community pharmacist attitudes to the over-the-counter (OTC) supply of sildenafil in New Zealand, finding it has enhanced their primary care role. In 2014, New Zealand made sildenafil available from specially trained pharmacists for the treatment of erectile dysfunction in men aged 35 to 70 years.¹ For research published in the International Journal of Clinical Pharmacy, researchers from the University of Otago and the University of Auckland interviewed 35 pharmacists to gauge their experiences and perception of over-the-counter supply of sildenafil and the requisite training undertaken. Under the New Zealand model, sildenafil distributors supply pharmacists with online training programs and screening tools approved by the Pharmaceutical Society of New Zealand. ‘Pharmacists considered the training uncomplicated, noting convenience and accessibility of online availability, although a couple would prefer face-to-face contact over the web-based training for asking questions,’ the researchers wrote. New Zealand’s model uses screening tools to identify low-risk populations suitable for supply. Patients that fell outside of the supply model parameters such as smokers, those who have had strokes or certain heart conditions were referred to a medical practitioner. ‘Many pharmacists estimated that over half (range 10–80%) of new requests for sildenafil resulted in medical referral without supply, commonly because of smoking, age over 70 years, or elevated blood pressure, occasionally diabetes and multiple medications were mentioned,’ the researchers found. ‘Some pharmacists never saw the referred men again, while others reported some or most returning with a prescription after consulting a doctor.’ The cardiovascular risk assessment of the supply model was seen as a positive for many of the pharmacists surveyed, with some indicating that they used it as an opportunity to refer for cardiovascular checks, especially men who seldom visited a GP. `I actually use the sildenafil supply to have a really good cardiovascular risk assessment conversation,’ reported one participant. `I often talk to them about the fact that the penile blood vessels are the smallest vessels in the body and they then therefore get atherosclerosis easier than everywhere else.’ The pharmacists interviewed also reported using resupplies as an opportunity for a general check-in with the patients. All but one pharmacist also conducted full consultations annually, sometimes resulting in medical referral. Some of the pharmacists also voiced their appreciation of the opportunity to build rapport with the patients, as well help them with significant issues, such as the effect of erectile dysfunction on relationships. The researchers concluded that the controlled pharmacist supply model appeared workable and provided opportunities for referral for early cardiovascular risk assessment. ‘Areas for possible improvement include better availability of written information for pharmacist-supply, and reminders to pharmacists about their obligations to provide this,’ they wrote. ‘The opportunity for greater doctor-pharmacist collaboration should be explored, and further research around quality of service, and the consumer experience is recommended.’ In Australia, the Advisory Committee of Medicines Scheduling is considering another application to down-schedule sildenafil at their meeting from June 26 to 28, for which PSA has made a detailed submission in support. Read the research here. References 1. Classification of Medicines. New Zealand Gazette. 2014;2014-go6426(127):3556.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][/vc_column][/vc_row] [post_title] => New Zealand model of OTC sildenafil earns praise [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => new-zealand-model-of-otc-sildenafil-earns-praise [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-06-19 12:12:49 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-06-19 02:12:49 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/?p=1755 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [title_attribute] => New Zealand model of OTC sildenafil earns praise [title] => New Zealand model of OTC sildenafil earns praise [href] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/new-zealand-model-of-otc-sildenafil-earns-praise/ [module_atts:td_module:private] => Array ( ) [td_review:protected] => Array ( [td_primary_cat] => 58 ) [is_review:protected] => [post_thumb_id:protected] => 1756 )
td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1752 [post_author] => 2 [post_date] => 2018-06-18 16:08:20 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-06-18 06:08:20 [post_content] => [vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]A study has found a pharmacy-driven protocol using nasal swabs to assess methicillin‑resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in pneumonia cases holds promise for reducing unnecessary use of vancomycin, recommended when there is a high risk of MRSA infection. Researchers at a US hospital evaluated the effectiveness of use of the nasal swab MRSA polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test to discontinue vancomycin on the duration of vancomycin therapy and clinical outcomes in patients with suspected community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) or healthcare-associated pneumonia (HCAP). US and Australian guidelines call for patients with suspected pneumonia to be initiated on broad-spectrum empiric antibiotics for certain patient groups, including anti-MRSA therapy. ‘However, it is often difficult to obtain a good-quality lower respiratory tract specimen for culture, leaving physicians with poor quality specimens or no culture data at all. For this reason, physicians are often reluctant to remove antibiotics directed toward MRSA,’ the St Mary’s Medical Center researchers wrote.¹ The nasal swab MRSA PCR test has gained interest as a rapid diagnostic tool for MRSA, able to return results in as little as 90 minutes², but it has traditionally been used as a tool to reduce the transmission of MRSA.³ For the study, the nasal swab MRSA PCR test was added as an automatic order to the CAP/HCAP order set in patients with suspected CAP or HCAP. If the results were negative and there was no apparent MRSA infection elsewhere, the pharmacist was permitted to discontinue vancomycin treatment without a physician’s order. Of the 196 patients included in the study, the 121 patients in the pre-intervention group received CAP/HCAP order set without nasal swab MRSA PCR test; whereas the 75 patients in the post-intervention group received the additional nasal swab MRSA PCR test to the CAP/HCAP order set.¹ The median duration of vancomycin therapy was significantly shorter in the post-intervention group than the pre-intervention group, at 49 hours compared to 18 hours, however there were no statistically significant differences in the secondary outcomes, including hospital length of stay, 30-day re-admission rate, and in-hospital all-cause mortality. The researchers concluded: ‘The results of this study provide additional evidence that the nasal swab MRSA PCR test may be a useful antimicrobial stewardship tool to guide discontinuation of empiric anti-MRSA therapy in patients with suspected CAP or HCAP, particularly when adequate lower respiratory tract cultures are not available. The addition of a pharmacy-driven protocol utilising the nasal swab MRSA PCR test was associated with a shorter duration of empiric vancomycin therapy by approximately 31 h (hours) per patient without increasing adverse clinical outcomes. Further studies are needed to confirm these results.’ Read the full article here. References:
[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][/vc_column][/vc_row] [post_title] => Nasal swab offers hope for reducing vancomycin use [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => nasal-swab-offers-hope-for-reducing-vancomycin-use [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-06-18 16:08:41 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-06-18 06:08:41 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/?p=1752 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [title_attribute] => Nasal swab offers hope for reducing vancomycin use [title] => Nasal swab offers hope for reducing vancomycin use [href] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/nasal-swab-offers-hope-for-reducing-vancomycin-use/ [module_atts:td_module:private] => Array ( ) [td_review:protected] => Array ( [td_primary_cat] => 58 ) [is_review:protected] => [post_thumb_id:protected] => 1753 )
- Dunaway, S., Orwig, K.W., Arbogast, Z.Q. et al. Int J Clin Pharm (2018) 40: 526. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11096-018-0647-3
- Smith EA, Gold HS, Mahoney MV, et al. Nasal methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus screening in patients with pneumonia: a powerful antimicrobial stewardship tool. Am J Infect Control. 2017;17(11):1295–1296.
- Huang SS, Yokoe DS, Hinrichsen VL, Spurchise LS, Datta R, Miroshnik I, et al. Impact of routine intensive care unit surveillance cultures and resultant barrier precautions on hospital-wide methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus bacteremia. Clin Infect Dis. 2006;43(8):971–8.
td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1691 [post_author] => 27 [post_date] => 2018-06-12 12:15:24 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-06-12 02:15:24 [post_content] => [vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]Immortalised in Australian slang, the analgesic phenacetin (used in Bex powder) is wrapped up in the development of the modern pharmaceutical industry and has shaped our attitude to the use of over-the-counter analgesics. Acetophenitidine (sold as phenacetin) was developed by the Bayer company in Germany in 1887, an accidental byproduct of a treatment to remove intestinal worms. It is regarded by some as the beginning of the modern pharmaceutical industry. A brief history The impetus to develop synthetic, non-opioid-based drugs to relieve pain, fever and inflammation came from the insecurity of supply from South American and Asian sources of opiates due to wars or other political reasons.1 Phenacetin works primarily on the nervous system, targeting the sensory tracts of the spinal cord, the brain and the heart. It lowers muscle reactiveness, reduces the body’s temperature and depresses heart action. Once these aspects for relief of pain, inflammation and fever provided by phenacetin were known it became widely used on a non-prescription basis, usually in a mixture with acetaminophen (paracetamol) and caffeine, known as APC powders. Such mixtures were recommended for headaches, colds and flu, nerve pain and rheumatism, among other indications. This mixture was popular mainly because consumers liked the marketing of three drugs in one, but there was no evidence of a medical benefit.2 Popularity In Australia, APCs such as Bex, Vincent’s and Veganin were the most widely used with the marketing phrase “A cup of tea, a Bex and a good lie down” becoming a common slang expression. Addiction to APC powders was common, with high rates of addiction in New South Wales and Queensland particularly.3 The dosages in Bex powder are one indication of the reason for its addictive qualities and its toxicity, with some formulations containing 420 mg of aspirin, 420 mg of phenacetin and 160 mg of caffeine in a single dose.4 Toxicity In the early 1960s Australian nephrologist Professor Priscilla Kincaid-Smith made the connection between phenacetin and kidney cancer while treating patients (predominantly women) presenting with what came to be known as analgesic neuropathy. From 1967, the dangers of powders containing phenacetin had become clear in Australia and abroad and over time they were voluntarily dropped from sale or restricted until they were banned entirely in 1977 in Australia5, Canada in 1978, the UK in 1980 and the USA in 1983.6 Today, phenacetin is no longer in clinical use but is widely used by criminal organisations to cut cocaine due to the similar effects of both drugs. References 1 Brune, Kay, Hinz, Burkhard. The discovery and development of anti-inflammatory drugs. Arthritis Rheumatology 2004;50(8):2391-2399. Available from: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/art.20424 2 Ibid 3 Stewart, John H. Analgesic abuse and renal failure in Australasia. Kidney International, 1978;13:72-78. Available from: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S008525381531838X 4 Bex Powders. UNSW School of Medical Sciences. Available from: https://medicalsciences.med.unsw.edu.au/node/302500715 5 Hennessey, Eileen M. ‘Her Stand-by for Keeping Going' APC use during the boom decades. Journal of the Royal Historical Society of Queensland 1993;15,(5):248-264. Available from: https://espace.library.uq.edu.au/view/UQ:206928 6 Lyon, FR. IARC Working Group on the Evaluation of Carcinogenic Risk to Humans. Pharmaceuticals.: International Agency for Research on Cancer 2012. IARC Monographs on the Evaluation of Carcinogenic Risks to Humans, No. 100A. PHENACETIN. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK304337/[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][/vc_column][/vc_row] [post_title] => A cup of tea, a Bex and a good lie down [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => cup-of-tea-bex-good-lie-down [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-06-12 12:48:03 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-06-12 02:48:03 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/?p=1691 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [title_attribute] => A cup of tea, a Bex and a good lie down [title] => A cup of tea, a Bex and a good lie down [href] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/cup-of-tea-bex-good-lie-down/ [module_atts:td_module:private] => Array ( ) [td_review:protected] => Array ( [td_primary_cat] => 58 ) [is_review:protected] => [post_thumb_id:protected] => 1696 )
td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1687 [post_author] => 40 [post_date] => 2018-06-12 09:00:37 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-06-11 23:00:37 [post_content] => [vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]New research has explored the benefits of pharmacists joining allied health teams in Australian residential care facilities, with promising results. Australian Pharmacist spoke with Nicole McDerby from the University of Canberra Faculty of Health, whose research team recently won the National MedicineWise Excellence in Consumer Information award. By placing a pharmacist within a Canberra residential care facility for two days a week over a six-month period, the team’s pilot program aimed to address inappropriate polypharmacy, the frequency and efficacy of medication reviews, and the pharmacist’s experience working within aged care. ‘To the best of our knowledge our project is the first evaluating the feasibility and outcomes associated with pharmacists working as part of allied health teams in Australian residential aged care homes. It is possible that some pharmacists have worked in this space, but there is no documented evaluation of this role,’ the PhD candidate said. ‘Our project looked at a number of aspects of quality use of medicines including: medication administration safety, nursing time spent on medication administration, appropriate storage of medicines, supporting rational prescribing and de-prescribing unnecessary medicines, formal and informal medication reviews, influenza vaccinations, and policy and procedure development to improve medication safety.’ ‘We let the pharmacist develop the role based on the needs of the residents and staff at the site. The role was an expansion of current clinical pharmacist services in aged care; it looked a bit more like the role [that] hospital pharmacists perform, and was completely separate and additional to the supply role of the community pharmacy.’ ‘There was good collaboration between the residential care pharmacist and the supply pharmacy throughout the project, which enabled some positive changes to improve process for staff at the home and the residents.’ By working closely with residents, the pharmacist was able to resolve medication issues, provide as-needed follow up for residents with ongoing issues, and evaluate their recommendations. ‘This type of follow-up is not funded for pharmacists providing RMMRs [Residential Medication Management Reviews], which is currently the primary pharmacist review service in Australia. So if follow-up is to occur under this service, the time spent is not remunerated for the pharmacist,’ Ms McDerby said. The judges described the research as an Australian first, piloting a residential care pharmacist model within the aged care setting. ‘The research highlighted many promising areas for improving quality use of medicines, including improved safety in medication administration in a population at high risk of medication misadventure,’ the judges wrote. Benefits extended beyond clinical outcomes, with patients enjoying the direct access to the pharmacist during the pilot period. ‘The nursing staff commented that the residents loved having a pharmacist on-site who they could have an informal discussion about their medications with,’ Ms McDerby said. ‘The nurses mentioned that many of the residents enjoyed the ability to discuss medications with their community pharmacist prior to transitioning into residential care, and was something the residents missed given that they were no longer able to readily access their local pharmacist.’ Ms McDerby is also a clinical pharmacist, and is a PhD candidate in pharmacy at the University of Canberra. She will be presenting some preliminary pilot results at the upcoming ConPharm in Brisbane. [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][/vc_column][/vc_row] [post_title] => Aged care pharmacist pilot a winner [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => aged-care-pharmacist-pilot-a-winner [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-06-12 11:50:31 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-06-12 01:50:31 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/?p=1687 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [title_attribute] => Aged care pharmacist pilot a winner [title] => Aged care pharmacist pilot a winner [href] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/aged-care-pharmacist-pilot-a-winner/ [module_atts:td_module:private] => Array ( ) [td_review:protected] => Array ( [td_primary_cat] => 26 ) [is_review:protected] => [post_thumb_id:protected] => 1688 )
td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1655 [post_author] => 11 [post_date] => 2018-06-05 11:16:35 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-06-05 01:16:35 [post_content] => [vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]Artificial intelligence promises to upend entire industries and pharmacy is far from immune – here’s how AI can remake drug discovery, customer service, training and more. Artificial intelligence is the sleeping giant that’s ‘giving the entire medical field super powers’, according to its proponents.¹ That may sound terribly exciting or just plain terrible, depending on whether you see AI as a utopia of benevolent robots serving humanity, or a tide of destruction set to wash away much of the workforce. The reality is, however, that AI is already improving pharmacy. It’s super-charging drug development, improving stock management and dosing, aiding better patient outcomes, and improving service delivery in community pharmacies. It would be ‘very, very foolish’ to ignore how AI is already changing pharmacy, warned co-owner of Epic Pharmacy and PSA18 speaker Cathie Reid. ‘You do see this in healthcare quite a lot – people say: “oh it’s fine in broader retail but it will never happen in healthcare”,’ observed Ms Reid, who is also chair of Flamingo AI, an artificial intelligence and machine learning company that provides cognitive virtual assistants. ‘Yes it might take a little longer, and have some bigger constraints than in a standard airline booking transaction, but it’s going to happen in healthcare.’ Artificial intelligence is defined as the ‘theory and development of computer systems able to perform tasks normally requiring human intelligence, such as visual perception, speech recognition, decision-making and translation between languages’.² Of course AI is heavily data-driven, making it a good fit with the healthcare system which holds almost a zettabyte (that’s almost a trillion GB) of data in the US alone.³ Sources of data include electronic health and medical records, the Internet of Things (wearables, apps, medical devices and sensors), genome registries and even insurance providers. Not surprisingly then, the pharmaceutical industry has been an enthusiastic adopter of AI. Accelerating drug development There are at least 18 pharmaceutical companies and more than 70 startups currently using AI to make drug discovery, development and repurposing cheaper, faster and better.4 They’re leveraging AI to aggregate and synthesise information, understand mechanisms of disease, repurpose existing drugs and find novel drug candidates. Take IBM’s Watson for Drug Discovery, for example. It has ingested 25 million Medline abstracts, more than a million medical journal articles, four million patents, and counting.5 Compare that to the average researcher, who reads between 200 and 300 articles in a year 5, and you can see the potential. AI is also being used to design drugs, design and run preclinical experiments, and design and recruit for clinical trials. The public-private Accelerating Therapeutics for Opportunities in Medicine (ATOM) Consortium aims to use AI to reduce the time between identifying a drug target and being patient-ready (currently four to six years) to just 12 months.6 Inroads are being made. For instance, Novartis claims it has reduced patient enrolment times by 10-15% by analysing clinical trial operations with machine learning. Meanwhile, BenevolentAI estimates it can deliver a 60% cost and timeframe reduction by slashing the amount of trial and error associated with designing a drug candidate. In 2016, it identified five ALS drug candidates within a week. Stock management and dosing in hospitals AI isn’t just the remit of the pharmaceutical industry. It’s also being used in hospital settings to improve pharmacy workflows, promote quality use of medicines and reduce drug spending. One prominent example is US not-for-profit Sutter Health, which late last year announced a collaboration with AI company Qventus. ‘The Qventus platform brings together hospital, patient and pharmacy data in real-time ... [it] identifies patients who may require additional attention and nudges the ... pharmacist to take needed actions,’ said Sutter Health. In Australia, hospital pharmacies are already using robotic drug dispensaries in a bid to improve safety, efficiency and stock management. At Perth’s Fiona Stanley Hospital, senior pharmacist Ken Tam said process automation had delivered a 40% reduction in wastage due to product expiration, and 68% decrease in clinical staff having to manually submit replenishment orders. ‘The system manages approximately 18,000 individual drug lines across 100 clinical areas, and processes approximately 12,000 drug transactions per day,’ he said. Community pharmacy Community pharmacies aren’t being left out, either. They already have a number of AI-enhanced apps for improving patient outcomes at their fingertips. One Australian example is ePAT Technologies’ PainChek, dubbed the world’s first smartphone pain assessment and monitoring device. ‘It uses automated facial recognition and analysis to detect the presence of pain by identifying facial micro-expressions,’ ePAT’s Mustafa Atee said. ‘That data, plus other non-facial pain cues, are used to calculate a pain intensity score.’ The genesis for PainChek came from an experience Mr Atee had during his first community pharmacy placement. ‘An elderly man verbally abused me for no apparent reason. The pharmacist in charge told me he had dementia,’ he said. ‘It stuck in my head that there must be some underlying trigger, some unmet need: perhaps pain.’ Five years in the making, PainChek is now TGA approved for non-verbal adults and the team is working on a product for infants. Another Australian startup, ScalaMed, has its own solution for community pharmacy – a blockchain prescription exchange system that gives patients secure, complete and portable prescriptions. Founder Tal Rapke said AI could help address information gaps. ‘The intelligence enables more information to go to the patient, which they can feed back to the clinician because they don’t have the pop-up fatigue that pharmacists sometimes get,’ Dr Rapke said. ‘The app sends alerts like: “You’ve just been prescribed a drug that you’re allergic to”, or “You shouldn’t take this over-the- counter medicine because it interacts with something you’re on”.’ The startup is now working to incorporate AI leveraging genomic and biometric data. ‘The app can say: “You’ve just been prescribed the following dosage. You may want to mention to your doctor that you’re a fast metaboliser of a particular molecule and they may want to start you on a different dosage”,’ Dr Rapke said. Ms Reid said community pharmacists could also expect their dispensing software to become more algorithm- and AI-driven. ‘It will reduce the dependence on a pharmacist to hold all the knowledge around things like medication interactions,’ she said. Digital prescriptions This does not mean robots are going to steal pharmacists’ jobs. But it does mean pharmacists should prepare now to capitalise on opportunities AI will bring. One way to start preparing is around digital prescriptions, Ms Reid said. ‘Doctors, and potentially pharmacists, will be prescribing digital tools – apps, sensors or wearable devices – that help a patient manage and monitor their health,’ she said. For example, late last year the FDA approved Proteus Discover – a digital pill with an embedded sensor to track if patients are taking their medicine properly. Or those wanting to quit smoking could be prescribed a wearable, such as Somatix, which uses predictive analytics and machine learning to analyse real-time hand gestures before the app launches a personalised intervention. Ms Reid said it was important for pharmacists to start positioning themselves at the forefront of managing and delivering these prescriptions. ‘In the same way that you have to counsel, train and support a patient with a physical prescription, there’s going to be the same need to do that with digital prescriptions,’ she said. ‘The risk is that when change happens, there will be other parties who will have their hands up to play that role.’ Digital relationships AI itself could provide an opening for pharmacists looking to ‘fill’ these digital prescriptions. ‘Part of the preparation is figuring out how pharmacists can form digital relationships with their customers now – so that they’ve established a relationship of trust and patients are used to exchanging data,’ Ms Reid said. One Australian pharmacy group doing that is National Pharmacies. It has introduced Amazon Rekognition – an image analysis tool – to its in-store kiosks. Once a registered National Pharmacies user authenticates with facial recognition, they can access at least seven different software platforms which allow them to update their membership details, find previous purchases or book health checks with a pharmacist.7 Another way to start building digital relationships is through chat bots – something US pharmacies are leading the way in. Challenges and opportunities The elephant in the room is that AI in medicine, and pharmacy in particular, faces some significant hurdles. To start with, most medical data is private, cannot be accessed legally and is siloed within different organisations. Another barrier is that vast amounts of health and medical data is messy and lacks consistency and standardisation, making it hard for computers to synthesise. Mr Tam also pointed out the ‘relative infancy of the field and the associated limited talent pool, a lack of understanding of what AI can offer, and high implementation costs’. Regardless, AI presents an opportunity for pharmacists to streamline their workflows, improve decision making and delegate repetitive tasks. For savvy pharmacists, what that means is more time to focus on being human and delivering quality patient care. Ms Reid said: ‘It’s going to be really important for pharmacists to look critically at what they do now and think about the likelihood of a sophisticated computer doing that just as well. ‘You’ve got to educate yourself and think about where the opportunities lie in AI because if you just put your head in the sand, that’s a guaranteed way for it to be a negative for you.’ References ¹ NBC News. Why Big Pharma and biotech are betting big on AI. 2018. At: https://www.nbcnews.com/mach/science/why-big-pharma-betting-big-ai-ncna852246. The Next Web. AI is giving the entire medical field super powers. At: https://thenextweb.com/artificial- intelligence/2018/02/05/ai-is-giving-the-entire-medical-field-super-powers/. ² Oxford dictionaries. Artificial Intelligences. At: https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/artificial_intelligence. ³ Tech Emergence. Where healthcare’s big data actually comes from. 2018. At: https://www.techemergence.com/where-healthcares-big-data-actually-comes-from/. 4 BenchiSci. Pharma companies using artificial intelligence in drug discovery. 2018. At:https://blog.benchsci.com/pharma-companies- using-artificial-intelligence-in-drug-discovery. 5 IBM. IBM and Pfizer to Accelerate Immuno-oncology Research with Watson for Drug Discovery. At: https://www-03.ibm.com/press/uk/en/pressrelease/51192.wss. 6 UCSF Innovation, Technology and Alliances. Accelerating Therapeutics for Opportunities in Medicine (ATOM) Collaboration. At: https://ita.ucsf.edu/news-and-events/accelerating-therapeutics-opportunities-medicine-at-om-collaboration-lawrence. 7 IT News. National Pharmacies uses in-store facial recognition. At: https://www.itnews.com.au/news/national-pharmacies-uses-in-store-facial-recognition-475375. 8 ICON. The power of AI to transform clinical trials. At: https://www.iconplc.com/insights/blog/2018/05/18/the-power-of-ai-to-transform-clinical-trials/index.xml. [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][/vc_column][/vc_row] [post_title] => Artificial Intelligence - real opportunities [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => artificial-intelligence-real-opportunities [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-06-05 11:17:45 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-06-05 01:17:45 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/?p=1655 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [title_attribute] => Artificial Intelligence – real opportunities [title] => Artificial Intelligence – real opportunities [href] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/artificial-intelligence-real-opportunities/ [module_atts:td_module:private] => Array ( ) [td_review:protected] => Array ( [td_primary_cat] => 26 ) [is_review:protected] => [post_thumb_id:protected] => 1656 )
td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1576 [post_author] => 11 [post_date] => 2018-05-31 14:24:35 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-05-31 04:24:35 [post_content] => [vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]While health and fitness apps promise to improve the quality of life for users through positive behavioural changes, few systematic reviews have collated their efficacy via randomised control trials. A study published by Bond University indicates some of these apps may have no effect or even a negative effect on a user’s health, when compared to control groups. Even then, the quality of evidence in the research was poor. 'The overall low quality of the evidence of effectiveness greatly limits the prescribability of health apps,' the npj Digital Medicine paper stated. 'Without adequate evidence to back it up, digital medicine and app “prescribability” might stall in its infancy for some time to come.' After searching global databases, the researchers found only 23 randomised control trials (RCTs) of 22 currently available stand-alone health apps robust enough for inclusion in their study. Some of these apps provided intervention of: treatment adherence and telemedicine support for Type 1 diabetes; education and rescue therapy for mild to moderate anxiety; cognitive behavioural therapy for depression, and weight loss in conjunction with counselling for patients with BMI exceeding 25 kg/m2. Of those, the evidence showed that just eleven apps were prescribable, or potentially prescribable. One Swedish government app designed to reduce alcohol use among university students actually led to them drinking more. The lead author of the study, Dr Oyungerel Byambasuren, told Australian Pharmacist that if patients wanted to use health apps there were three things pharmacists should do. 'Direct them to a reputable source like the NHS App library and HANDI, and always advise to exercise common sense and precautions in regards to the privacy and data safety,' she said. 'Advise them to use the apps they choose persistently over a substantial amount of time and with health professionals’ support and guidance to see real benefit. 'Remind them that health apps are not a substitute for professional medical advice or care.' Dr Byambasuren added that persistence and accountability seemed to matter in digital therapeutics. 'Research also showed that people’s app use drops to zero in a very short amount of time especially when they are not followed up by healthcare professionals,' she said. Despite the findings, Dr Byambasuren said health apps had great potential. 'We have no doubt that health apps will be integral part of non-pharmacological intervention toolbox of GPs and pharmacists,' she said. 'We need to encourage health apps to be tested before they’re released to the market and the testing to be of rigorous standard. 'When studies show positive results, they need to be replicated and validated for apps to be fully prescribable.' Further details of the study can be read here. [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][/vc_column][/vc_row] [post_title] => Counselling patients on ineffective health apps [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => counselling-patients-on-ineffective-health-apps [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-06-01 12:22:24 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-06-01 02:22:24 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/?p=1576 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [title_attribute] => Counselling patients on ineffective health apps [title] => Counselling patients on ineffective health apps [href] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/counselling-patients-on-ineffective-health-apps/ [module_atts:td_module:private] => Array ( ) [td_review:protected] => Array ( ) [is_review:protected] => [post_thumb_id:protected] => 1578 )
td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1586 [post_author] => 12 [post_date] => 2018-05-22 16:48:59 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-05-22 06:48:59 [post_content] => [vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]Eight out of every ten consumers say they'd be willing to obtain pharmacy-based chlamydia testing, according to a survey conducted in Australia and Switzerland. The research, published in the Journal of Sexual & Reproductive Healthcare, shows 79.3% of Australian consumers would be willing to seek testing from a pharmacy, while in Switzerland that figure was 83.3%. Researcher Sajni Gudka, Assistant Professor of Pharmacy at the University of Western Australia, said the survey results back up similar studies she's conducted over the last decade. 'Every time we survey young people aged 16 to 30 the result is always that between 70% to 80% of them would be willing to go and ask the pharmacist for a chlamydia test,' she said. Asst Prof Gudka said the main reason consumers would be willing to seek a testing kit from a pharmacy is the convenience it offers compared to booking a general practitioner appointment. 'If they could get that pathology form from the pharmacy, and then go to the pathology lab and do the test, it would save them 1 to 2 hours of their time, plus out-of-pocket costs,' she said. On the cons side of the ledger, 32% of Australian consumers were worried about a lack of privacy in the pharmacy. Meanwhile, 49% of survey participants said they'd be embarrassed about asking for a chlamydia test, however Asst Prof Gudka said the stigma would likely reduce over time. 'We find that if something is available from a pharmacy, people believe that it can't be that bad. We've seen that over the last 15 years with emergency contraception,' she said. Asst Prof Gudka said chlamydia was an ideal candidate for pharmacy-based testing, as opposed to gonorrhoea and other sexually transmitted diseases, because it was often asymptomatic and didn't require a blood test or internal examinations. 'If you don't have symptoms you might not go to the doctor because it's a hassle. But if someone is going to the pharmacy for other sexual health needs, such as emergency contraception or condoms, they may think, “Oh yeah, I probably should get this test done too”,' Asst Prof Gudka said. She said for pharmacists, of which 95.7% said they'd be willing to provide pharmacy-based chlamydia testing, this would be taking the next step in sexual health management 'They already provide a lot of care around sexual health but they do it passively. This will be a more active approach,' Asst Prof Gudka said.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][/vc_column][/vc_row] [post_title] => Pharmacy-based STI testing [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => pharmacy-based-sti-testing [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-06-12 18:19:40 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-06-12 08:19:40 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/?p=1586 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [title_attribute] => Pharmacy-based STI testing [title] => Pharmacy-based STI testing [href] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/pharmacy-based-sti-testing/ [module_atts:td_module:private] => Array ( ) [td_review:protected] => Array ( ) [is_review:protected] => [post_thumb_id:protected] => 1594 )
td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1313 [post_author] => 37 [post_date] => 2018-04-17 15:40:12 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-04-17 05:40:12 [post_content] => [vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]An Australian study indicates pharmacists should play a larger role in identifying and resolving drug-related problems (DRPs) as part of a collaborative general practice team. A University of Technology Sydney study looked at six pharmacists that were co-located with GPs in 15 primary care practices across Western Sydney. Helen Benson, a pharmacist and researcher on the study, believes pharmacists in these practices have made a real difference to patient care. ‘As far as chronic disease management and medication management goes, our skills and our knowledge mean that we can make a valuable contribution. ‘We understand how medicines work and how medicines work together, and are familiar with different disease states,’ Ms Benson said. Pharmacists are especially valuable in helping people who have several co-morbidities and are taking multiple medicines. In this study alone, one person was taking 26 different drugs, and there was an average of 2.3 DRPs per patient. ‘When you think of all the things a GP has to do, it just makes sense that you have someone on the team who can help you manage those really complex patients. The main thing is making sure the medicine is the right drug for the right reason at the right time,’ she explains. With an increased risk of DRPs in those cases, pharmacists can check medicines are indicated for a condition, are the right fit for a person and their family, and will bring the best outcome for them. The research aimed to identify and classify DRPs detected by pharmacists during patient consultations, and compare the number of pharmacist recommendations with the number of recommendations GPs accepted and actioned. GPs accepted and actioned 70% of pharmacist recommendations, indicating that pharmacists can effectively detect and resolve DRPs, and that most GPs are willing to accept pharmacist recommendations and collaborate with them as part of a general practice team. The study’s findings were cited by Chair of the AMA Council of General Practice, Dr Richard Kidd as evidence of the importance of bringing 'pharmacists into the fold'. ‘With increasing evidence that where pharmacists are integrated within general practice patient care is improved, the AMA continues to advocate for Government funding to make this an everyday reality for general practice and for patients,’ said Dr Kidd. References:
td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1706 [post_author] => 39 [post_date] => 2018-06-15 10:31:19 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-06-15 00:31:19 [post_content] => [vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]Growing up in the country, Jacinta Johnson MPS always wanted to work in a healthcare role, and pharmacy seemed to offer opportunities that no other allied health profession could match. AP: What attracted you to pharmacy? JJ: I knew I wanted a career in allied health and pharmacy seemed super interesting. It amazed me that drugs could have such powerful effects on the body. I also saw pharmacy as a diverse career pathway as it would be a health-related job and one that I could do almost anywhere. AP: Why did you decide to pursue a career as a teacher-practitioner in the hospital setting? JJ: As an undergraduate, I worked in a community pharmacy and thought that was where my career was going to continue into the future. However, in the middle of my fourth year I asked myself: ‘Is an intern year in community pharmacy going to extend me beyond what I am doing at the moment?’. So I applied for an internship in hospital pharmacy, and I loved it. AP: What are the biggest challenges you face on a day-to-day basis? JJ: Similar to pharmacists working in other settings, the daily challenges involve managing competing priorities under what is sometimes an immense amount of time pressure. I try to pre-schedule all necessary tasks in to a given timeslot. I’ve found it important and useful to even schedule the simple (but relevant) daily things that are part of the job. Tasks like reading over documents and responding to email are allocated a timeslot. AP: What is the most satisfying aspect of your role? JJ: In my teaching capacity, I love it when I see pharmacy students apply something I have taught them previously. I’m still a bit amazed when it dawns on me that I have helped to shape that future pharmacist. In the hospital my role is Medication Safety Pharmacist, which means I am involved with lots of audits and other medication management projects and I love the research side of what I do. AP: What advice would you give to pharmacy students considering the different career options available to them? JJ: You have more than hospital and community roles to choose from. Look at your individual skill set and think about the aspects of pharmacy that you find the most rewarding. AP: What value does PSA provide you in your career and professional development? JJ: While the therapeutic update seminars and online modules are handy, I find the most value in the experiences that are available through PSA. I think of these activities as the ‘doing-type’ of professional development, as by contributing to an activity they provide opportunities to build a broad range of skills – and often these skills are ones that you might not get to develop within the workplace. A typical day for academic and hospital pharmacist Jacinta Johnson Southern Adelaide Local Health Network at Flinders Medical Centre 8.45am Attend to emails. The first job of the day is to review, sort and respond to email queries that have come through overnight. 9.15am Review Safety Learning System (SLS). Assess reports in the SLS, listing updates into categories and recording any medication errors that may have occurred in the previous 24 hours. 10.15am Protocol reviews. Assess any new protocols from a medication safety perspective to ensure the guidelines are clear. 12.15pm Lunchtime - university administration. Check emails from university account, and respond to students. 1.00pm Audit reports. Review SLS incidents and identify events that require a longer investigation. 2.30pm Education sessions. Host information events for hospital staff, including nurses, to educate them about the role of the pharmacist within the hospital. 3.30pm Meet researchers. Review medication research conducted by students and interns in the hospital, and discuss the next step in their studies. 4.00pm Medication safety meeting. A multidisciplinary meeting to discuss any medication incidents that have occurred and ways to improve. Further Resources Learn more at http://www.psa.org.au/about/pharmacy-as-a-career/what-pharmacists-do-and-where-they-work [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][/vc_column][/vc_row] [post_title] => Academic and hospital pharmacist Jacinta Johnson MPS [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => academic-and-hospital-pharmacist-jacinta-johnson-mps [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-06-15 10:31:22 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-06-15 00:31:22 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/?p=1706 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [title_attribute] => Academic and hospital pharmacist Jacinta Johnson MPS [title] => Academic and hospital pharmacist Jacinta Johnson MPS [href] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/academic-and-hospital-pharmacist-jacinta-johnson-mps/ [module_atts:td_module:private] => Array ( ) [td_review:protected] => Array ( [td_primary_cat] => 28 ) [is_review:protected] => [post_thumb_id:protected] => 1708 )
td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1644 [post_author] => 11 [post_date] => 2018-06-04 11:00:44 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-06-04 01:00:44 [post_content] => [vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]Yong Deng is a Grade 1 clinical pharmacist at Monash Health and one of the founders of South Sudanese Australian Youth United (SSAYU), a not-for-profit that aims to empower the community through education and employment, while combating alcoholism and incarceration. AP: How did you make your way into pharmacy and what attracted you to it? YD: I grew up in Kakuma refugee camp in Kenya, where there was a lack of access to medication supply. That environment pushed me to want to get into medicine.We came to Australia in 2009 (when I was 17) and my cousin told me: ‘To get into medicine you should do pharmacy as your undergrad’. So I transferred to pharmacy in Bendigo where I met people who became my mentors and started working in community pharmacy. My focus on getting into medicine faded away and I graduated from pharmacy in 2016. AP: You’ve had to overcome a lot to get where you are today. What was your schooling like in Kenya? YD: My mum had never seen inside the walls of a classroom and, having lost my dad during the war, she believed the only thing that could liberate her children was education. The only privilege I had in the camp was that when my elder brother finished high school he was able to earn the equivalent of AU$50 a month. He used almost half of that to get me into a better school. AP: In what ways has your childhood influenced the way you approach pharmacy and community work? YD: At the refugee camp there were so many people from diverse backgrounds. That experience feeds into the way I individualise patient therapy, having compassion. When I see a patient I think ‘Okay, what background have they come from? What might be important to them? How can I relate to them? How do I speak in terms they understand?’ On a personal level, it gives me a different perspective to someone who grew up privileged – I value pharmacy for the opportunity it gives me to contribute to the community and give back to Australia. AP: Tell us about your community work. YD: I’m Assistant Managing Director of SSAYU, which is made up of young professionals from South Sudanese backgrounds. Our vision is to help young people reach their full potential through a range of programs. There’s the Bounce Back basketball program where, every Friday, youths speak to people from different professions to gauge where they want their lives to head. When we started Bounce Back it was more a rehabilitation program for people coming out of the judicial system. Now it also engages with people who are doing exceptionally well. AP: What are your goals for the future? YD: I’m looking at specialising and being a cardio- renal pharmacist in the next few years. Those are the two areas I’m really passionate about. In terms of the community, my goal is teaching young South Sudanese Australians that we have come so far – that there’s a lot you can achieve if you put your full energy into it and have somebody guiding you.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][/vc_column][/vc_row] [post_title] => The power of compassion in clinical pharmacy [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => the-power-of-compassion-clinical-pharmacy [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-06-04 12:51:42 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-06-04 02:51:42 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/?p=1644 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [title_attribute] => The power of compassion in clinical pharmacy [title] => The power of compassion in clinical pharmacy [href] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/the-power-of-compassion-clinical-pharmacy/ [module_atts:td_module:private] => Array ( ) [td_review:protected] => Array ( [td_primary_cat] => 28 ) [is_review:protected] => [post_thumb_id:protected] => 1652 )
td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1539 [post_author] => 12 [post_date] => 2018-05-15 18:17:11 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-05-15 08:17:11 [post_content] => [vc_row][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]Lieutenant Shreyans ‘Shaz’ Shah MPS, 28, always wanted to serve in the army, but thought that door closed once he became a pharmacist. It wasn’t until he chanced upon an army advertisement a few years back that he realised he could do both. How did you find yourself in this role? I’d worked as a pharmacist for three years after graduating from the University of Newcastle. I managed two pharmacies, one remote and one in a metropolitan area. Then one day during a seminar I saw a position advertised for a pharmaceutical officer in the army. As a young kid I’d always wanted to be a soldier and I didn’t know you could be a pharmacist too. What’s it like being an army pharmacist? The thing about being in military is that you’ve got to be flexible and you’ve got to be up to task. Not only is it physically challenging but it’s also mentally challenging. But if you like being stimulated all the time then it’s probably the right fit for you. It encourages you to explore the many facets of pharmacy instead of the traditional role of a dispensing pharmacist behind a counter. It has very much suited my lifestyle – being able to play sport and being paid to work out every morning has kept me fit and given me that perfect work-life balance. Have you served overseas? I was deployed to the Middle East last year for seven months. Being the senior pharmacist in charge of all the medical and dental drugs and consumables for our operations definitely has to be the most challenging thing I’ve ever done. There’s no such thing as weekends over there – the enemy doesn’t see that it’s a Saturday and take some time off. You’re always on your toes and you don’t know what the next day will bring. One place might have mass casualties that exceed the supply of stores we normally keep. As a result, the soldiers put an urgent request through to me and then I have to get replenishment stores from our National Support Base in time to battle prep for another similar event elsewhere. What is most satisfying about your role? Our role is to enable soldiers to do their job: making sure they’re combat-ready and fit. If they go down, we help patch them up and make sure that they can go back into battle so we can maintain sufficient firepower. When you’ve enabled that to occur, that’s very satisfying – you’ve allowed the organisation to achieve its mission. People are definitely appreciative of your efforts when you’ve permitted them to do the job they’re trained to do. You get a real sense of pride from that. Where do you hope this role will lead you? I’m sort of at a crossroads – I don’t see myself going back to being a community pharmacist, but I also don’t want my work to be monotonous for the rest of my life, because obviously that will get boring. I don’t want to get comfortable in a particular posting so I’d like to see how we operate in different demographic environments, and how our roles influence the outcomes the organisation brings. Maybe by then I can find my niche.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][/vc_column][/vc_row] [post_title] => Being a defence force pharmacist [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => being-a-defence-force-pharmacist [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-05-15 18:17:11 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-05-15 08:17:11 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/?p=1539 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [title_attribute] => Being a defence force pharmacist [title] => Being a defence force pharmacist [href] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/being-a-defence-force-pharmacist/ [module_atts:td_module:private] => Array ( ) [td_review:protected] => Array ( ) [is_review:protected] => [post_thumb_id:protected] => 1541 )
td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1054 [post_author] => 12 [post_date] => 2018-04-16 17:20:02 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-04-16 07:20:02 [post_content] => Having missed out on studying medicine at the university of her choice in India, Associate Professor Bandana Saini MPS thought she’d study pharmacy for ‘just a year’ while waiting to re-sit the medicine exams. More than two decades later, she’s a leading lecturer, researcher and asthma educator. How did you find yourself in your current role at the University of Sydney? I first studied pharmacy in India then came to Australia and completed an MBA. I was about to return to India when I walked into the University of Sydney and thought, ‘I should see how pharmacy is taught here’. The then-Dean introduced me to a professor who asked, ‘If you were doing research, what would you do it in?’ I replied, ‘Asthma management’. And she said, ‘You’re on!’ That was 1997. I haven’t looked back. What have you learned along the way? My PhD focused on developing an asthma management model for community pharmacies. So I first had to learn a lot about community pharmacy because my original training had been very science and pharmaceutics-focused. I had to register in Australia as a pharmacist and spent a lot of time in community pharmacies, which I loved. I got a lot of enjoyment talking to patients and listening to their stories. Also, having asthma myself, I’ve realised I have a lot of personal motivation to work in this area. What are your biggest challenges? With teaching, you need a lot of passion. You also need a little bit of showmanship to engage pharmacy students not just in the lecture, but with the profession. With research, the challenge is to make sure that, before I retire, respiratory disease management and my other research field, sleep, are remunerated parts of pharmacy services. What’s the most satisfying part of your role? If I go into a pharmacy almost anywhere in NSW, there’s a good chance someone will walk out and say, ‘Oh, Bandana, how are you?’ It’s very fulfilling to see people you’ve trained who are now professionals. Where do you see yourself in 10 years? I’d still like to be at the university because I really am passionate about teaching and research. But I want to take a bigger leadership role in terms of developing pharmacy services. So far I’ve been a lone researcher. I do a project, get great results, publish it, publicise it and let the pharmacy profession know. But there’s a gap between that and actually making it happen. And that’s what I want to focus on. What’s your plan to make that happen? I’ll have to work with people outside pharmacy, people who are health policy experts. I’ll learn and work with them towards making sure that there’s a channel for paying pharmacists for services they currently provide for free – in my case, asthma and sleep. A typical day for Associate Professor Bandana Saini MPS, an Asthma Educator
|8am||General preparation of respiratory kit. Prepare patient record file, print asthma education materials and action plans.|
|9am||Arrive at pharmacy one to two hours before appointment. Check list of patient appointments. Request dispensed medication history and review asthma medications, as well as any notes from pharmacist.|
|10am||Check which inhalers patient is using and prepare demonstration devices. Check who the patient’s GP or specialist is. Check with pharmacist for other issues.|
|10.30am||Set up area for patient appointment. Ensure patient files, spirometer, lung models and dispensed medication history are ready.|
|11am- 11.45am||Introduce myself to patients, make them comfortable, obtain patient consent, interview patient, conduct lung function test, inhaler check, vaccination status and action plan ownership checks.|
|11.45am- 12.15pm||Go through three-step inhaler education plan, including patient demonstrating, giving a demonstration myself, and then getting the patient to demonstrate again correctly.|
|12.45pm- 1pm||Explain action plan to patient. End interview with goals the patient would like to set. Discuss what I’ll recommend to their doctor and provide a copy of referral letter to them.|
|1pm- 1.30pm||Complete documentation and send referral to GP. Make next pharmacy appointment for patient. Debrief pharmacist. Ensure patient notes are confidentially secured with pharmacy.|
td_module_mega_menu Object ( [authorType] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1050 [post_author] => 11 [post_date] => 2018-04-06 03:47:56 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-04-05 17:47:56 [post_content] => Pharmacist and runner Madeline Hills, applauded for her standout sportsmanship in the Commonwealth Games, tells AP how her pharmacy training set her up for athletic success. Ms Hills' inspiring efforts on the track and at the 10,000m race-end on 9 April have been recognised and lauded internationally for showing the world what sportsmanship is all about. Instead of leaving the track once her Commonwealth Games race was complete, as most competitors did, Ms Hills and her Australian teammates remained in place, compassionately awaiting the arrival of the last competitor Lineo Chaka from Lesotho, whom they cheered and clapped across the finish line. Ms Hills is still to compete in the Women's 5000m Final on Saturday 14 April. Before leaving to compete in the Commonwealth Games, Madeline talked to AP about the correlations between her pharmacy training and what it takes to be an Olympic athlete. Q. You’re an Olympic and Commonwealth Games steeplechase veteran but you’ve made a late switch. Instead you’re contesting the 5000m and 10,000m flat – no hurdles or water pits. Why? A. After the Olympics, I picked up a string of injuries that don’t really agree with all the jumping of steeplechase. Funnily enough, hurdling has always been the part I don’t like about the steeplechase. But it does seem strange to have left steeplechase; hopefully it’s not forever. Q. What drew you to participating in the steeplechase originally? A. In my second year as a pharmacy student the 2006 Commonwealth Games were on in Melbourne and we saw the steeplechase as an event I could qualify for. I’m quite tall and I’ve got very, very long limbs so I suppose people looked at me and thought I would effortlessly jump over things. To be fair, I actually don’t. I’m not the most coordinated but I get over them because I’m long. Q. You did in fact qualify for the Melbourne Games, but three people qualified faster. You then parked the steeplechase for a while and focused on pharmacy? A. Yes, I finished my study and had a really strong desire to travel. For the next four or five years I locumed around the country and did this cycle of working crazy hours, travelling overseas for months, then coming back to replenish the stocks. While I was working Adelaide, I studied a Masters in International Public Health – I wanted to see where pharmacy could take me. But then I started running again and community pharmacy worked for me because it’s so flexible. Q. It was around this time that you started training towards the 2016 Rio Olympics. What has made your athletics career so satisfying? A. The best moments are when I’m able to achieve something that once seemed impossible. I went into the Rio Olympics with a broken second metatarsal and all the specialists, the team doctor – everyone – was saying ‘we don’t want you to run on this’. So I emailed a family friend who’s a doctor for the Australian cricket team saying ‘What do you think?’ He wrote back ‘Mads, they’re right – you can’t run on this’. I remember getting that email and deleting it. Q. You went on to run a personal best in Rio. What lessons has your sporting career taught you that you can apply to pharmacy and vice versa? A. Pharmacists are quite meticulous with planning and executing things. Taking that to my running has helped me minimise complications from injury, plus train and work full-time relatively stress-free. Running has helped me be more flexible as a pharmacist. That can be as simple as adjusting when staff don’t turn up, thinking on your feet and accepting when things don’t go a certain way. [post_title] => In the fast lane with Madeline Hills [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => in-the-fast-lane [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-04-11 14:52:49 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-04-11 04:52:49 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://australianpharmacist.com.au/?p=1050 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [title_attribute] => In the fast lane with Madeline Hills [title] => In the fast lane with Madeline Hills [href] => https://www.australianpharmacist.com.au/in-the-fast-lane/ [module_atts:td_module:private] => Array ( ) [td_review:protected] => Array ( ) [is_review:protected] => [post_thumb_id:protected] => 1264 )
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