Branch Committee Elections 2020 postponed

Dear PSA Members,


The escalation of the impact of COVID-19 on our professional and personal lives, has created an unprecedented time in our global history.  I recognise and applaud the work each one of you are delivering as a key health care professional in continuing to deliver pharmacy services and care to patients in this COVID-19 world.  As such, I am committed to ensuring PSA continues to support you, our member, as best as possible.


Branch Committee Elections 2020

In light of the current environment, the Board met recently to discuss the impending PSA Branch Committee Elections.  I wanted to update you on the decision the Board has made and PSA’s approach going forward.


Given the impact of COVID-19, the Board has decided to postpone the 2020 Branch elections process for 12 months.


To implement the postponement, the term for the existing Branch Committee will be extended from 1 July 2020 for 12 months.  The term of the incoming elected Branch Committee would commence 1 July 2021 and end 30 June 2023 to maintain the existing three year election cycle.  A revised election timetable will commence in February 2021. Please be assured that this is a temporary measure in response to the COVID19 pandemic.


In taking this decision, the Board sought legal advice on the best path forward to ensure we can continue our proud reputation as a member led and governed organisation and respond to this temporary issue. The Board also considered the following factors:


  1. Pharmacists are experiencing an increased workload and pressure during these unprecedented times. This increased workload and demand on the profession may have impacted each individual member’s ability to nominate and participate in the election process.
  2. Other more immediate priorities may make it hard for members to vote in the upcoming election.
  3. PSA should be focusing all its available time, resources and effort on our members and the immediate issues affecting them – now is not the time to be looking inwardly.
  4. The need for stability in leadership and good governance for PSA to ensure it can remain strong in the face of adversity and continue to deliver support to you.


Branch Appointed Board Directors

There are also three Branch Appointed Board Directors terms due to expire on 30 June 2020.  It has been agreed that these existing Branch Appointed Directors from NSW held by Stephen Carter, VIC held by Michelle Lynch and WA held by Anna Gelavis will go to election as normal, but for an interim period of 12 months, commencing 1 July 2020 and ending 30 June 2021.   The term for three Branch-Appointed Director positions will remain three years in total, with the incoming Branch-Appointed Director term commencing 1st July 2021 and ending 30th June 2023.


Board Appointed Directors

The Board has taken the decision to extend the current two Board Appointed Directors terms for a further 12 months, commencing 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021. These two Board Elected Board Director positions includes the Early Career Pharmacist (ECP) role held by Lauren Burton and the Independent Director role held by Tony Evans.


To absolve any conflict of interest, the Board Members currently holding both the Branch Appointed and Board Appointed Director positions abstained from voting on these decisions.


I have been speaking with a number of other member bodies who have undertaken similar changes given the unprecedented times. I believe this stability in Board and Branch leadership, is the right thing to do for PSA, for our members and for the profession.


I would like to personally thank the members who took the time to nominate for the Branch Elections, your time has not been wasted as we will hold over these nominations for the postponed election in 12 months.  As your nominations are held in the strictest of confidence by the Company Secretary alone, the Company Secretary will be writing to you personally to thank you for your nomination and to encourage you to provide an open nomination for any casual vacancies which may arise in the Branch Committee’s over the next 12 months.


Thank you for all your continued work and commitment to PSA and the profession, especially at this time where are our skills, professionalism and expertise is critical in caring for patients.  The PSA team is working very hard to make sure the organisation is in the best position for the long term and importantly can deliver for you its members.



All the best,





A/Prof Chris Freeman

National President