Help shape the future of pharmacy
Voting for the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia’s (PSA) 2021 State and Territory Branch Committee elections is due to open from 14 April 2021 at 12.01am AEST for full financial members.
The full election process will be held from March to May 2021. Following the postponed 2020 elections, terms of newly elected committee members will commence 1 July 2021 and end 30 June 2023 to maintain the existing three year election cycle.
Following the nominations process for the 2021 PSA Branch Committee Elections, Pharmaceutical Society of Australia Limited received more nominations than there are positions available. In accordance with Pharmaceutical Society of Australia Limited By-Law 11.5, a ballot is required to determine these positions.
Please find below instructions on how to participate.
The ballot will be open for 28 days starting at 12:01AM AEST on Wednesday, 14th April 2021 and ending at 11:59PM AEST on Tuesday, 11th May 2021.
You will be able to cast your vote online or by requesting a postal ballot pack. Details about how to vote online will be dispatched to you via email on the day the vote opens. To request a postal ballot pack, contact CorpVote Support on 1300 710 950 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
You will only be able to vote once and your vote will be registered anonymously.
What do I need to vote?
In order to vote you will require a Voter Access Code and your PSA-registered email address. Your Voter Access Code will be sent to you at the time the vote opens by email. For assistance confirming your PSA-registered email address or to update your records, please contact Mem-ber Services at email@example.com or 1300 369 772.
Help and support information
For voter support, please contact CorpVote Support on 1300 710 950 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The following nominations were received:
• THIRTEEN (13) candidates for NINE (9) positions available on the PSA ACT Branch Committee
• TWENTY-SEVEN (27) candidates for TWELVE (12) positions available on the PSA NSW Branch Committee
• EIGHTEEN (18) candidates for TEN (10) positions available on the PSA QLD Branch Committee
• FOURTEEN (14) candidates for TEN (10) positions available on the PSA SA/NT Branch Committee
• THIRTEEN (13) candidates for NINE (9) positions available on the PSA TAS Branch Committee
• TWENTY (20) candidates for TEN (10) positions available on the PSA VIC Branch Committee
• ELEVEN (11) candidates for NINE (9) positions available on the PSA WA Branch Committee
Your eligibility to vote in this election has been determined in accordance with the Constitu-tion of Pharmaceutical Society of Australia Limited. You are eligible to vote in the election for your State or Territory PSA Branch committee.
Election results will be published on the PSA website www.psa.org.au by 5:00PM AEST on Thursday 13 May 2021.
Who is conducting the ballot process
CorpVote Pty Ltd is independently conducting this voting process. We have been appointed by the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia to protect your privacy and ensure a fair and equitable voting process. All votes submitted through our system are anonymous and the method by which you cast your vote is secure.
WA pharmacists now able to vaccinate outside pharmacy
Monday 2 November 2020
Western Australians will be better protected following an announcement by the WA Government that will allow pharmacists to administer vaccinations outside of a community pharmacy.
Pharmacists will now be able to provide vaccinations to patients in places such as aged care settings, public and private hospitals and community health centres as well as community pharmacies.
PSA WA Branch President Dr Fei Sim welcomed the announcement which will help ensure those most vulnerable in the community can receive vital vaccinations for preventable diseases such as influenza.
“Pharmacists are more than capable of providing this service to Western Australians and this initiative will be particularly beneficial to patients that have difficulties accessing vaccinations, such as those who are housebound or residents of aged care facilities,” she said.
“At a time when those most vulnerable in our communities are hesitant or not willing to go out in public due to the COVID-19 pandemic, increasing options for those people to access vital vaccinations is essential.
“I thank the WA Government for this decision that will allow pharmacists to help vaccinate more people and increase immunisation rates within the community.
PSA has continually called for WA residents to be provided better access to immunisation services through the removal of artificial barriers to pharmacist-administered vaccination.
“As the peak national body for pharmacists, PSA will continue to work with the WA Government to remove barriers which restrict pharmacists from administering vaccines to better protect the community,” said Dr Sim.
“This includes making regulative changes to enable appropriately trained pharmacists to administer vaccines which can be administered by other immunisers.
Media contact: PSA media 0487 922 176
World Mental Health Day: Opportunity for pharmacists to do more
One in five Australians are affected by mental illness annually with many more impacted by the recent bushfire crisis and current COVID-19 pandemic. This World Mental Health Day, Saturday 10 October is encouraging everyone to make a promise to “Look after your mental health, Australia.”
The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) is taking stock to recognise the important relationship between a person affected by mental illness, their pharmacist and health care team.
Acting PSA President Michelle Lynch acknowledged the Government’s $5.7 billion investment into mental health during this week’s budget, which paves the way for pharmacists to play a greater role in the delivery of mental health care in Australia.
“A majority of Australians visit their pharmacist around 14 times a year and as trusted and accessible health professionals pharmacists often come in contact with patients suffering mental ill-health,” she said.
“Enabling pharmacists to recognise potential signs and symptoms of mental ill-health as well as support patients and refer on to GPs or emergency care, has the potential to not only improve outcomes, but potentially save lives.”
In response to the Productivity Commission’s Draft Report on Mental Health PSA said engaging pharmacists in the delivery of mental health care in Australia will lead to earlier intervention, improved treatment outcomes and a reduction in medication harms.
PSA made five key recommendations to the Productivity Commission which included developing and implementing regular reviews for people with mental ill-health, incorporating pharmacogenomic testing, integrating pharmacists in suicide prevention strategies and supporting pharmacists on the front lines who come in contact with people with mental ill-health.
Ms Lynch said there was an opportunity to better use the skills of pharmacists to improve the use of medicines for mental ill health by integrating pharmacists into multidisciplinary mental healthcare teams as well as support early detection and intervention for a patient in mental health crisis.
“Recently PSA provided government funded mental health first aid training to pharmacists and pharmacy support staff in bushfire-affected regions, to support communities affected by the 2019-20 bushfires, with pharmacists often the first port of call for many people suffering mental ill-health.”
“Pharmacists have been extremely grateful for the opportunity to receive this funded training, and the positive feedback indicates there is a clear need to upskill pharmacists as mental health problems increase in prevalence, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.”
The final report was handed to the Australian Government on 30 June 2020 and is expected to be released in the coming weeks.
Media contact: PSA media 0487 922 176
Federal Budget Builds a safer medicines future for all Australians
Tuesday 6 October 2020
The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) welcomes the Morrison Government’s 2020-21 Federal Budget commitment to pharmacists with a new medicines listing guarantee and supply chain reforms.
Acting PSA President Michelle Lynch said the $2.8 billion investment over four years for a new medicines listing guarantee would improve access to medicines for all Australians.
“The guaranteed listing of all new medicines recommended by the PBAC gives patients certainty that new and lifesaving medicines are available on the PBS,” she said.
“The PBS Unique Identification Framework will allow improved medicine safety by allowing the assessment and tracking of medicines when they come into Australia, through to dispensing of medicines to patients.
“This will support medicine recalls and reduce the potential for counterfeit medicines.”
PSA also acknowledges tonight’s budget secures funding for the 7CPA, providing $18.3 billion for the delivery of medicines and patient-focused programs for the safe and quality use of medicines.
Also announced was significant investment in aged care which includes a record 23,000 home care packages, delivered at a cost of $1.6 billion as well as $5.7 billion to be spent on mental health in 2020-21.
Ms Lynch said these measures lay the groundwork for the future with the opportunity for pharmacists to do more in medicine safety in areas including in mental health and aged care.
“We have continued to call for funding to ensure pharmacists have more time on the ground in aged care to address the issues of chemical restraint and medicines safety more broadly,” she said.
“We will continue to highlight that the challenges posed by medicine use in aged care can only be fixed by pharmacists playing a larger role in protecting residents from the harm caused by overuse and misuse of medicines.
PSA also welcomes the $22.5m investment in improving the use of antimicrobials supporting the government’s commitment to medicine safety as Australia’s 10th National Health Priority Area. This will help to monitor and reduce the threat of antimicrobial resistance in Australia.
The continued implementation of the MBS Review Taskforce recommendations is vital to ensure its recommendations, such as the positive recommendation for medication management services for complex patients, will be implemented.
These announcements come on the back of the Morrison Government’s $25 million investment in medicine safety through the Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF), continuation of home medicines delivery and continued dispensing arrangement announced by the Federal Government late last month.
Media contact: PSA media 0487 922 176
PSA call on ACT political parties to support pharmacists
Thursday 1 October 2020
The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) calls on Australian Capital Territory (ACT) political parties to commit to improve the health and wellness of Canberrans through pharmacy-related initiatives which will improve medicine safety and access to essential medicines.
PSA ACT Branch President Renae Beardmore said pharmacists are among the most accessible healthcare providers, but they need to be better supported to practice to the full extent of their skills, expertise and training.
“The upcoming election is the perfect time to commit to new reforms that will allow pharmacists, as medicines experts to practice to their full scope that will lead to a healthier ACT,” she said.
“PSA urges all ACT political parties to sign up to Public Hospital Pharmaceutical Reform with the Commonwealth that will allow patients to receive a month’s worth of medicines via the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) which is in line with other states and territories.
“Currently ACT patients receive only three to seven days of medicines at discharge from hospital which creates a risk of hospital readmission or emergency presentation as patients may not be able to obtain ongoing medicine supply of critical medicines, such as those to prevent blood clots or heart attack.
PSA also urges political parties to improve access to vaccinations to protect Canberrans against infectious diseases including COVID-19 when available.
Ms Beardmore said ACT pharmacist vaccinators are more than competent in vaccine administration, but are currently limited in the range of vaccines which can be administered.
“Other Australian states, as well as many overseas countries support greater heard immunity through pharmacist-administered vaccination against diseases such as hepatitis, cholera and polio,” she said.
“Removing restrictions which limit the range of vaccines, and other injectable medicines, that ACT pharmacists can safely administer will increase vaccine coverage in the ACT.”
“We also ask for the elected political party to appoint the ACT Chief Pharmacist to the ACT Government’s Health Emergency Management Unit (HEMU) Steering Committee to support planning, preparation and ensure the medical supply chain during emergencies.
“Pharmacists feel an obligation to assist and are readily available to do so, as demonstrated during the recent bushfire crisis and COVID-19 pandemic.
“During COVID-19 support to the community has been minimised, indeed impeded at times, by an early lack of involvement and engagement with pharmacists prior to an emergency, at the stage of planning and preparation.”
Media contact: PSA Media 0487 922 176
Notice of PSA Annual General Meeting
Wednesday 30 September 2020
The Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Members of the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) will take place on Thursday 29 October 2020 at 6pm (AEDT).
Due to the extraordinary circumstances of COVID-19, PSA’s AGM will be held virtually and all members and proxyholders can participate via the PSA Member portal.
Following pre-registration which can be completed here, an email will be sent containing a link which will be used to log into the zoom meeting on the date of the AGM, with members asked to start logging in no later than 5:45pm.
PSA members are encouraged to participate in the AGM by watching the live webcast, asking questions and voting by Zoom poll where members will be prompted to answer the polling questions with a Yes or No answer and all responses will remain anonymous.
Any eligible Member unable to attend the AGM virtually via Zoom is entitled to appoint a proxy to attend the AGM and vote on their behalf in accordance with the directions on the Proxy Form.
Business of the Meeting
- To receive and consider the PSA’s audited financial report and reports of the Directors and auditor for the financial year ended 30 June 2020.
- To receive and consider the President’s Report.
- To consider any other business that may be brought before the AGM in accordance with the Constitution or the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth).
Members will be able to listen to the proceedings and view the presentation through Zoom (including being able to ask questions online by speaking when being provided with an opportunity to do so).
A representative of PSA’s auditor will be available at the AGM to answer questions relevant to the audited financial report and reports of the Directors and auditor for the financial year ended 30 June 2020.
Media contact: PSA media 0487 922 176
PSA announces 2020 Excellence Award Winners
Friday 25 September 2020
Three outstanding pharmacists have been recognised for their high standards, professionalism and commitment to pharmacy in the 2020 PSA Symbion Excellence Awards.
The Pharmacist of the Year, Early Career Pharmacist (ECP) of the Year and Lifetime Achievement Award were announced online today as part of World Pharmacists Day celebrations.
PSA National President Associate Professor Chris Freeman said he was delighted to congratulate this year’s award winners who were all worthy recipients, following strong nominations across all three categories.
“2020 has been an extraordinary year, one where pharmacists have gone above and beyond to serve the community,” he said.
“These three pharmacists have all exemplified a contribution to the profession and maintained the highest standards of commitment and professionalism.”
The 2020 PSA Excellence Awards winners are:
- Pharmacist of the Year – Kay Dunkley, VIC
- Early Career Pharmacist of the Year – Samuel Keitaanpaa, NT
- Lifetime Achievement Award – Debbie Rigby, QLD
Ms Dunkley said she was accepting the award on behalf of all the frontline pharmacists who have worked tirelessly through the bushfires and COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
“This year the pharmacists who should be receiving this award are those on the frontline, they are all pharmacists of the year in 2020,” she said.
“During the bushfires there were pharmacists who slept in their cars next to the pharmacy and others who organised delivery of medicines via Jet Ski or boat when there was no road access and there were those pharmacists who attended evacuation centres to organise medication.
“Then the COVID-19 pandemic hit, and pharmacists and pharmacy staff once more found themselves on the frontline dealing with community members who were anxious, frustrated and fearful, having to completely change the way they work to ensure public safety and remain open when other members of the community went into isolation.
“These are the heroes of pharmacy who are all deserving of this award and I am accepting it on their behalf.”
Mr Keitaanpaa said he is very grateful for being awarded ECP of the year for 2020 and being the first from Norther Territory to receive the award.
“The Northern Territory has provided me so many opportunities to help improve patients’ lives and strengthen other health services and professionals around the safe use of medicines,” he said.
“I am thankful for everyone who has helped me along the way, either directly supporting me or just giving me the time to discuss how pharmacy can help.
“There are so many hard working pharmacists up here so I am proud to be able to represent them through this award.”
Lifetime Achievement Award winner Debbie Rigby said she is absolutely thrilled to receive the award.
“Being the first female to be recognised for the PSA Lifetime Achievement Award makes it very special to me,” she said.
“I have been very fortunate throughout my career to be surrounded by generous pharmacists who have inspired, mentored and supported me to make the most of opportunities and innovations.”
The award winners each receive a Symbion Education Grant valued at $9,000. The grants are possible thanks to Symbion’s long-standing support of the awards.
Symbion CEO Brett Barons said the PSA Excellence Awards provide much deserved recognition of those pharmacists who have made a substantial contribution to the profession.
“On behalf of everyone at Symbion, we extend our congratulations to this year’s winners and thank them for their dedication and for inspiring all sectors of the profession. The roles these pharmacists have played in providing care to their communities is quite extraordinary.” he said.
“We have been a proud sponsor of these awards for the past 16 years but this year’s awards mean just that little bit more with all that we have experienced in 2020. We look forward to being able to meet the winners in person and are delighted to be supporting their ongoing education and efforts to provide an exceptional level of care to the community.”
Nominations are now open for the PSA State and Territory Awards. Nominations will be taken for Pharmacist of the Year, Early Career Pharmacist of the Year, Lifetime Achievement Award and Intern Pharmacist of the year for all states and territories (excluding Tasmania who take part in the combined Tasmanian Pharmacists Awards).
Media contact: PSA Media 0487 922 176
Wint Ye Phu named Intern Pharmacist of the Year
Friday 25 September 2020
Talented intern pharmacist Wint Ye Phu has won the 2020 PSA MIMS Intern Pharmacist of the Year Award.
Announced online as part of World Pharmacists Day, the award recognises intern pharmacists who demonstrate outstanding performance in their development as professional pharmacists.
Ms Phu is completing her internship at Market City Pharmacy in Canning Vale, Western Australia and has been fundamental in helping to develop the Facebook group “The Mindful Pharmacist” assisting other pharmacists, interns, students and health care staff learn a different drug of the day for 100 days.
“Winning this award is one of the best things that has happened to me in 2020, amidst the global pandemic and starting my journey into pharmacy,” she said.
“I feel absolutely honoured and grateful to be chosen as the Intern Pharmacist of the year and I would like to thanks PSA for awarding me this great honour.
“Receiving this award makes me feel as if I have been recognised for doing what I love and it means a lot especially in the early stages of my career.
“I would also like to thank the pharmacists and my colleagues who have contributed greatly towards supporting and guiding me in my journey to becoming a pharmacist and despite all the challenges that the pandemic has brought upon us in 2020, they are the ones who made every bit of my intern year enjoyable and exciting.”
PSA National President Associate Professor Chris Freeman congratulated Ms Phu on her achievements and dedication to the profession.
“Throughout her internship, Ms Phu has shown incredible development as a pharmacist as well as great initiative and a willingness to assist her colleagues to deliver positive patient outcomes,” he said.
“With pharmacists like Ms Phu coming through the ranks, the profession is in terrific hands going forward and I congratulate her on receiving this much deserved award.”
MIMS Australia is the leading sponsor of the award and contributed the major prize of $5,000 for the winner to put towards educational training.
Robert Best, CEO of MIMS Australia and New Zealand said for over 55 years, MIMS has been and continues to be, committed to supporting young healthcare professionals from all parts of the healthcare ecosystem.
“It is with immense pleasure that we support community and hospital pharmacists and the interns within them by providing world class medications information that support excellence in patient care and medication management, he said.
“Being able to reward excellence in young innovative people and recognise their outstanding contributions, especially during a difficult year whereby COVID-19 has created learning and communication challenges, an intern such as Ms Phu demonstrates that the future of pharmacy is in great hands.”
For further information and the winners video visit: https://www.psa.org.au/about/awards/intern-pharmacist-of-the-year/
Media contact: PSA Media 0487 922 176
PSA delivers MRFF funding deal to enhance medicine safety
Friday 25 September 2020
The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) has welcomed funding for medicines safety and quality use of medicines research that the Federal Government has announced today, with a $25 million investment through the Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF).
The grant opportunity will be available to support the Quality Use of Medicines and Medicine Safety National Health Priority, aimed at improving access to medicines and the safe use of medicines in the community.
PSA National President Associate Professor Chris Freeman welcomed the announcement and said research undertaken through this funding will go a long way in improving the health of Australians through medicine safety.
“The intended outcome of the research grant opportunity is to reduce the amount of medicine-related harm in the community and help promote the safe and effective use of medicines,” he said.
“This is on the back of PSA seminal Medicine Safety: Take Care report which showed, 250,000 Australians are hospitalised each year and another 400,000 present to emergency departments as a result of medication error, misuse and misadventure, costing Australia $1.4 billion in hospital admissions.
“The Health Minister’s commitment to PSA to progress the National Health Priority Area included progressing research initiatives that would seek to improve medicines safety and the quality use of medicines. I am pleased that the Minister was able to finalise this announcement to coincide with World Pharmacists Day.
“This continues the commitment that successive governments have had through Community Pharmacy Agreements to continue to encourage and foster innovation in the role of pharmacists.”
The first round of the MRFF grant opportunity will allocate $13 million to support medical research and medical innovation projects and will open on 6 October 2020.
As part of World Pharmacists Day 2020, the Federal Government also announced that existing medicines-related COVID-19 measures, including the Home Medicines Service and Continued Dispensing emergency arrangements will continue for at least another six months.
A/Prof Freeman welcomed the extensions but once again called on the Government to make Continued Dispensing arrangements permanent.
“With COVID-19 still posing considerable risk in parts of Australia these arrangements are important to ensure Australians can continue to safely access essential medicines,” he said.
“We continue to urge the government to make emergency supply provisions of this nature standard practice and it is important that all Australians are supported and have access to vital medicines when faced with an emergency or disaster.”
Also announced by the Federal Government, from 1 January 2021, to help people take the right dose of medicine at the right time, changes to the Dose Administration Aids program will increase the base cap from 30 to 60.
Media contact: PSA Media: 0487 922 176