Getting the most out of PSA24


There’s just over 10 weeks to go until PSA24, when pharmacists across Australia converge for 3 days of networking, evidence-based education and fun.

This year’s event – held in Sydney from 2-4 August 2024 – will be bigger and better than ever, with the move to the mammoth International Convention Centre (ICC).

To gear up for the conference, Australian Pharmacist spoke with two members of the ECP Community of Specialty Interest (CSI) about what they are planning to get out of PSA24.

Attending masterclasses on a range of conditions

Friday at PSA24 is officially ‘Masterclass day’, with three in-depth sessions to choose between, led by experts who will take attendees on a deep dive into the most up-to-date evidence and what it means for patient care.

With ADHD diagnoses increasing in prevalence, Pharmacy Partner at LiveLife Pharmacy Port Douglas, James Buckley MPS is hoping to learn more about the neurodevelopmental condition in the Focus forward: empowering pharmacists in ADHD care masterclass.

James Buckley MPS

‘We’re seeing more and more adults diagnosed with ADHD, so it will be interesting to learn more about helping patients manage the condition,’ he said.

Because trends in ADHD diagnosis and treatment are evolving, Mr Buckley is eager to demystify uncertainties about the condition in order to provide holistic care.

‘I think this will help me to develop more of an understanding of patients with ADHD and their stories,’ he said. ‘Putting yourself in their shoes and trying to understand what they’re going through can help to better tailor counselling.’

As a newly credentialed pharmacist who now provides Home Medicines Reviews (HMRs), Adelaide-based Raymond Truong MPS is keen to catch the Fighting kidney disease together; managing the intersection of CKD, HF & DM masterclass.

‘The three topics the masterclass covers – heart failure, chronic kidney disease and diabetes mellitus – are common in Australia, especially in our older population,’ he said.

Raymond Truong MPS

Because the early stages of kidney disease can go undetected, knowing the red flags is key – particularly among patients who have diabetes and/or heart failure.

‘I’ve also noticed CKD is often labelled, but some clinicians don’t address it,’ said Mr Truong. ‘So I’ve had to highlight it to the doctors as well.’

The third masterclass, Making the most of living with COPD will help pharmacists to identify patients with COPD and provide support to optimise health outcomes.

Choosing from 40 education sessions

At this year’s conference, pharmacists can pick and choose between a range of different education sessions geared towards contemporary pharmacy practice.

As one of the first pharmacists to complete the training for the Queensland Community  Pharmacy Scope of Practice Pilot, Mr Buckley is aiming to boost his knowledge on treating skin conditions via five back-to-back Saturday sessions on:

‘There are 20 different conditions in the pilot and half of them are skin conditions,’ he said.

Attendees learning about pharmacist prescribing at PSA23

‘With many different grading systems and severity scores required to categorise a patient’s condition, which entails knowing what questions to ask and taking a really good history, I’m looking to improve those skills.’

Networking with peers

At PSA24, pharmacists will benefit from plenty of networking opportunities, including breakfast with PSA National President Associate Professor Fei Sim FPS on Saturday morning, and the Gala Dinner – where pharmacists are encouraged to attend in their finest ‘golden’ attire – later that night.

At the renowned ECP party on Friday night, Mr Buckley said the CSI leadership team is designing ‘ice breaker games’ for pharmacists to partake in. ‘Look forward to interactive social events on the night,’ he added.

The PSA23 Gala Dinner

For Mr Truong, catching up with interstate pharmacist colleagues will be a highlight, as well as strengthening in-person bonds with other ECP CSI leadership members.

‘I’m also looking forward to identifying other ECPs, seeing what they’re up to, particularly if they don’t already have a network of their own,’ he said.

Experiencing new frontiers

At this year’s conference, pharmacists can expect to experience a raft of changes, including sessions on topics that have never been broached before.

An emerging area that Mr Truong is looking forward to exploring is artificial intelligence in the education session Is AI transforming Healthcare?

‘Now that digital healthcare has been established, automation and AI has been a prevalent focus within the last few years,’ he said.

‘It will be interesting to learn more about how that will work in terms of healthcare, whether in a community setting, or even HMRs in the future.’

Meanwhile, Mr Buckley is looking forward to all the possibilities a new larger venue will provide.

‘I’m excited to see what the setup will be, including the trade show, stalls, and sessions along with any meeting, areas, bars and lounges,’ he said.

Don’t miss your chance to register for PSA24 at a reduced rate via the Early Bird offer for the full conference, which has been extended until 11:59 pm on May 26, 2024.