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More pharmacists to join the COVID-19 vaccine rollout nationwide.

The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) welcomes today’s announcement from the Prime Minister that all approved community pharmacists will finally be permitted to vaccinate against COVID-19.

 

This afternoon, Prime Minister Morrison announced that all approved community pharmacies will be able to request AstraZeneca vaccines from Monday 26th July.

 

PSA National President, A/Prof Chris Freeman, said pharmacists around the country will welcome this news.

 

“Today is the day that we have been waiting for and PSA is pleased that pharmacists will finally be able to fully contribute to the vaccine rollout.

 

“PSA has been working tirelessly with all governments to secure maximal pharmacist involvement since the vaccine rollout commenced.

 

“This is the patient-centric approach that Australia has been waiting for – and will expedite completion of the rollout.

 

“As we’ve seen in countries the UK and the United States, utilisation of local pharmacist immunisers has allowed them to reach their respective vaccination targets on schedule.

 

“The Federal Government’s indemnity scheme already covers pharmacists administering COVID-19 and they are fully equipped with the knowledge and resources to effectively deliver the vaccine to their communities.

 

“Pharmacists will be able to target those at-risk Australians, particularly the elderly, who remain unvaccinated – negating the need to queue at mass vaccination hubs for extended periods of time.

 

“Seeing that your local pharmacist is now offering vaccinations will normalise the vaccine itself and will help combat both hesitancy and complacency.

 

“PSA calls on all states and territories to update their regulations to ensure as many eligible Australians can access the vaccine as soon as possible.” A/Prof Freeman said.

 

PSA is dedicated to supporting pharmacists in delivering the COVID-19 vaccine both safely and effectively to the public, and pharmacists are ready to advance Australia out of the pandemic. If you require professional advice, please contact PSA’s Pharmacist to Pharmacist Advice Line between 8.30am and 5.00pm AEST on 1300 369 772 or visit our website.

 

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Media contact: PSA media 0424 777 463

Pharmacists administer 1M flu vaccines!

The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) strengthens calls on governments to expand the activation of pharmacists in vaccinating against COVID-19, following their clear success in administering influenza vaccines.

 

As of Sunday, 18 July, pharmacists have administered over one million influenza vaccines to Australians, according to data from the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR).

 

PSA National President, A/Prof Chris Freeman, commends pharmacists who continue to play a crucial role in protecting our community, helping Australians consistently achieve high influenza vaccination rates.

 

“Year-on-year local pharmacists are continuing to make a significant contribution to immunisation against seasonal influenza, protecting their communities against this potentially deadly disease.

 

“Recent data from the AIR shows that pharmacist-administered flu vaccinations have now surpassed the one million mark since the start of this season. I know how grateful the public is to conveniently receive their vaccination from their local pharmacist.

 

“It’s not too late to get your flu vaccination from your local pharmacist, particularly as we come into our second traditional peak for the season.”

 

A/Prof Freeman went on to renew calls for nationwide pharmacist involvement in the COVID-19 vaccination strategy.

 

“This data from the AIR is indicative of the impact that local pharmacists can have on achieving national immunity and provides concrete justification that community pharmacist involvement will expedite completion of the vaccine rollout.

 

“According to a report released by the McKell Institute on Monday, activation of 4,000 community pharmacies would allow Australia to reach its vaccination targets roughly two months faster than at the current rate.

 

“In NSW, Premier Berejiklian has confirmed that the vast majority of community pharmacists will be activated over the coming weeks to combat the escalating COVID-19 outbreak across the state.

 

“All jurisdictions must take action and allow all COVID-19 vaccines to be available through the entire vaccinating pharmacist network.

 

“All Australians should have the option to go to their local pharmacist for their recommended vaccine because it is so easy and convenient to do so.” A/Prof Freeman said.

 

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Media contact: PSA media 0424 777 463

Excitement ahead of PSA21VIRTUAL!

The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) is excited for our upcoming National Conference, PSA21 – Your Tribe is Calling, on Friday 30th July to Sunday 1st August https://www.psa21.com.au/.

 

PSA21VIRTUAL is Australia’s leading education conference for pharmacists and kicks off as a virtual interactive experience next Friday.

 

The event offers an opportunity for pharmacists across all areas of practice to access industry-leading CPD; hear from industry, political leaders and experts; to showcase their research and to advance Australia’s standard of pharmacist-delivered patient care through innovative ideas and solutions.

 

Over the course of the three-day event, delegates will hear from leaders and experts in the industry, keeping you up-to-date with recent developments, policy and practice changes. Delegates will also have the opportunity to learn from and build relationships with specialist and expert speakers across diverse topics. Event speakers include international guest Dan Schneider, pharmacist and activist from the Netflix docuseries “The Pharmacist”, A/Prof Suzanne Nielsen, Dr Jacinta Johnson, Dr Katie Allen MP, Emma McBride MP and Dr Andrew Stafford along with a special announcement from the Commonwealth Minister for Health and Aged Care Hon Greg Hunt MP.

 

The PSA21 program has been designed to suit the changing needs of all pharmacists – with high quality, robust Continuing Professional Development and platforms for innovative practice and strategic networking opportunities. Specialised masterclasses in aged care, diabetes, heart failure and research will be held throughout August as part of the PSA21 virtual program.

 

PSA21VIRTUAL is a fully interactive experience which allows delegates to move between virtual rooms, have their burning clinical and product questions answered by exhibitors in the virtual exhibition hall, and live chat with colleagues and speakers.

 

Celebration of pharmacy student achievements is an integral component of PSA’s national conference, and during the event, PSA will host the Pharmacy Student of the Year (PSOTY) awards. PSOTY awards recognise and celebrate outstanding pharmacy students by showcasing their counselling skills to the pharmacy profession.

 

Building on an already successful partnership, PSA will again be working closely with the Australasian Pharmaceutical Science Association (APSA), to bring you the latest in research that impacts your practice through PSA21 Abstract presentations.

 

​Advancing the quality of patient care and pharmacy practice is a cornerstone of PSA’s organisational intent. Pharmacy Shark Tank showcases Australian pharmacists’ innovative ideas and solutions that address unmet clinical needs and how these ideas can shape the future of pharmacy practice. This component of the national conference provides a fresh perspective to the profession, and has been the catalyst for tangible change across various fronts of clinical practice.

 

Keep up to date with all things PSA21 via the #psa21virtual hashtag or reach out to our events team at conference@psa.org.au.

 

PSA looks forward to seeing you at the conference!

 

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Media contact: PSA media 0424 777 463

Selected NSW pharmacies have started vaccinating against COVID-19!

Today, selected pharmacies across rural and remote NSW have commenced vaccinating their communities against COVID-19. The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) commends these local pharmacies taking part in the regional NSW rollout, and applauds the Berejiklian Government for committing to maximising pharmacist involvement.

 

PSA has been working closely with the state government to secure pharmacist involvement in the strategy since the vaccine rollout commenced, and this follows Premier Berejiklian’s announcement last week that a further 1,250 pharmacies will soon be activated across NSW.

 

PSA NSW Branch President, Chelsea Felkai, and PSA National President, A/Prof Chris Freeman, thanked the NSW Government for taking action to increase access to vaccinations.

 

“Today marks an important day in the state’s response to COVID-19, particularly whilst many NSW residents remain under stay at home orders.” Ms Felkai said.

 

“We have almost 5,000 skilled, trusted and experienced pharmacist vaccinators across NSW, and when fully activated, they will make a substantial difference to the population’s uptake of the vaccine. Today’s on-boarding of these regional pharmacies is a great first step.

 

“Premier Berejiklian has made it clear that we cannot live with the delta variant unless a certain proportion of the population are vaccinated, so we need to make it as easy and convenient as possible for Australians to get vaccinated – and activating all 1,250 approved pharmacies enables this.

 

“According to a report released by the McKell Institute today, activation of 4,000 community pharmacies would allow Australia to reach its vaccination targets roughly two months faster than at the current rate.

 

“We are also pleased to see that pharmacists can now vaccinate in NSW regardless of practice setting. This means that pharmacists will be able to play a greater role in administering vaccinations in GP clinics, aged care facilities, and vaccination hubs.” Ms Felkai said.

 

A/Prof Chris Freeman added “Australia needs a unified, patient-centric approach that puts the community first. It is great to see NSW utilising its full vaccinator workforce. Pharmacists are the most obvious solution to increasing accessibility of vaccinations. We hope that more jurisdictions will follow NSW’s lead.”

 

PSA is dedicated to supporting pharmacists in delivering the COVID-19 vaccine both safely and effectively to the public, and pharmacists in the remaining jurisdictions are on standby to support the strategy.

 

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Media contact: PSA media 0424 777 463

Local pharmacists kick off in regional Victoria

The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) is pleased that 8 rural and remote community pharmacies in Victoria have been activated in the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, but calls for state-wide involvement.

 

Today, local pharmacists in towns including Beechworth, Mansfield and Yackandandah commenced vaccinating their communities against COVID-19.

 

PSA is working closely with the Victorian Government to secure maximal pharmacist involvement in the vaccination strategy, and is pleased to see that first step has been taken.

 

PSA National President, A/Prof Chris Freeman, and PSA Victoria Branch President, John Jackson, acknowledged that more work is still required.

 

“Community pharmacists have been vaccinating against influenza since 2014, and PSA is glad to see that the same process is now being applied to combatting coronavirus,” Mr Jackson said.

 

“This is a start – but on-boarding less than a dozen local pharmacies in regional areas simply isn’t enough.

 

“The state is currently in the midst of yet another outbreak, therefore, utilising community pharmacists at this juncture is imperative to protecting Victorians. Activate the full pharmacist workforce now!” Mr Jackson said.

 

“After an incredibly challenging year and a half for Victorians, local pharmacist involvement in the rollout is welcomed news for the state that has been hit hardest by COVID-19, but 8 local pharmacies isn’t enough,” A/Prof Chris Freeman added.

 

“We need Victoria to follow New South Wales’ lead on this, by making all COVID 19 vaccines available through local pharmacies. All Australians should have the option to go to their local pharmacist for their vaccine because it is so easy and simple to do.”

 

PSA is dedicated to supporting pharmacists in delivering the COVID-19 vaccine both safely and effectively to the public, and pharmacists around the country remain ready and on standby to support the strategy.

 

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Media contact: PSA media 0424 777 463

Local pharmacists rolling out in regional SA

The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) welcomes the involvement of local pharmacies in South Australia’s vaccination strategy, but calls for full utilisation of the pharmacist workforce.

 

Today, local pharmacists have begun vaccinating their communities against COVID-19 using the AstraZeneca vaccine at selected pharmacies in regional SA.

 

PSA has been working closely with the South Australian Government to secure pharmacist involvement in the strategy since the vaccines were made available in the country.

 

PSA SA Branch President, Robyn Johns, was amongst the first handful of community pharmacists vaccinating patients in Littlehampton today.

 

“It was wonderful to be on the frontline today, immunising the Littlehampton community against COVID-19 – but disappointingly, pharmacist involvement in the rollout is still incredibly limited.

 

“Data shows that 43% of Australians over the age of 50 years still haven’t had their first dose yet and local pharmacists can bridge this immunisation gap.

 

“As evidenced here in the pharmacy today, local pharmacists can target at-risk Australians, particularly the elderly who may be hesitant to commute to or queue at these hubs for extended periods of time.

 

“Littlehampton is about 30 to 40 minutes away from Adelaide’s CBD, and given the close proximity to the state’s capital city, why can’t metropolitan pharmacists play their part?

 

“We already have a skilled, trusted, experienced, and easily accessible vaccinator workforce at governments’ disposal – so we must activate them now!” Ms Johns said.

 

PSA is dedicated to supporting pharmacists in delivering the COVID-19 vaccine both safely and effectively to the public, and pharmacists are on standby to support the strategy.

 

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Media contact: PSA media 0424 777 463

 

Breakthrough in NSW with pharmacists to help vaccinate!

The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) applauds the Berejiklian Government’s announcement that approved community pharmacists in NSW will be activated in the COVID-19 vaccine rollout.

 

This morning, Premier Berejiklian announced that local pharmacies across the state will be permitted to vaccinate their local communities against COVID-19.

 

PSA National President, A/Prof Chris Freeman, and NSW Branch President, Chelsea Felkai, welcomed the news.

 

“This is very good news and is something PSA has been calling on the NSW Government, and all governments to do for quite some time,” A/Prof Freeman said.

 

“Pharmacists are the most obvious solution to increasing accessibility to vaccinations. Pharmacists are trained, experienced, easily accessible, and close to home for many people. Pharmacists across NSW are ready to go, therefore, they will be up and running very quickly.

 

“Now we need the rest of the states and territories to follow New South Wales’ lead on this, and once onshore, all COVID 19 vaccines need to be made available through the community pharmacy. All Australians should have the option to go to their local pharmacist for their specifically recommended vaccine because it is so easy and simple to do,” A/Prof Freeman said.

 

“We have almost 5,000 skilled, trusted and experienced pharmacist vaccinators across NSW. They are very keen to start vaccinating, to support their communities,” Ms Felkai added.

 

“At a time when we are also encouraging NSW residents to stay local, local pharmacists are the obvious choice.

 

“Local pharmacists can also target at-risk Australians, particularly the elderly who may be hesitant to commute to or queue at hubs for extended periods of time. Local pharmacists can reduce the rate of “no shows” by making it easier and more convenient to get vaccinated, and can reduce wastage by managing their appointments,” Ms Felkai concluded.

 

The Federal Government’s indemnity scheme already covers pharmacists administering COVID-19 and PSA is dedicated to supporting pharmacists in delivering the COVID-19 vaccine both safely and effectively to the public, and pharmacists are on standby to support the strategy.

 

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Media contact: PSA media 0424 777 463

From Broome to Boyup Brook, local pharmacists in rural WA vaccinating from today

The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) is pleased that some Western Australian community pharmacists have commenced vaccinating against COVID-19, but calls for full activation of the pharmacy workforce.

 

From today, 49 Western Australian community pharmacies in locations such as Broome, Denmark and Esperance, will commence immunising their local communities against COVID-19.

 

PSA has been working closely with the Western Australian Government to secure pharmacist involvement in the rollout and is delighted to see that this has finally come to fruition in regional WA.

 

PSA WA President, Dr Fei Sim, said that this outcome has been long-awaited but is concerned that pharmacist involvement is still limited.

 

“This is fantastic for rural residents in towns including Donnybrook, Narogin and Wickham, but with 50 percent of people aged over 50 years still to get their first dose, it is time to activate all approved community pharmacies in WA now.

 

“While this is a great start, a further 463 pharmacies have been approved by the government, but are yet to start vaccinating.

 

“As Australia’s most accessible healthcare workforce, bringing all community pharmacists on-board will accelerate the rollout, especially in Australia’s largest and most population-dispersed state.

 

“While Western Australia’s COVID-19 experience is the envy of the world, vaccination is the only path out of the pandemic.

 

“We must do everything we can to get as many Western Australians vaccinated against this terrible disease as soon as possible. This means activating all of our full vaccinator workforce – including pharmacists – as soon as possible,” Dr Sim said.

 

PSA is dedicated to supporting pharmacists in delivering the COVID-19 vaccine both safely and effectively to the public, and pharmacists in the remaining jurisdictions are on standby to support the strategy.

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Media contact: PSA media 0424 777 463

NSW Cannot Open Until Pharmacists Can Vaccinate

NSW cannot open until pharmacists can vaccinate, according to the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA).

 

Today, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has said that NSW cannot live with the Delta variant
unless a certain proportion of the population are vaccinated, however, she continues to sideline the almost 5,000 pharmacist vaccinator workforce in NSW.

 

PSA NSW Branch President, Chelsea Felkai, says there is no explanation from the NSW
Government as to why pharmacist involvement in the rollout is still incredibly limited.

 

“Last week, Premier Berejiklian announced that only 22 community pharmacies across the state will commence vaccinating patients with the AstraZeneca vaccine from mid-July.

 

“We have almost 5,000 skilled, trusted and experienced pharmacist vaccinators across NSW,
and the Government has refused to tell us why they are not being utilised.

 

“The announcement last week of a positive case at one of the vaccination hubs reaffirms the
importance of accessing these vaccines within your local community, whether that be through
your local GP or pharmacist.

 

“At a time when we are also encouraging NSW residents to stay local, local pharmacists are the obvious choice.

 

“Now, Premier Berejiklian says we cannot live with the delta variant unless a certain proportion of the population are vaccinated. We know there is no shortage of AstraZeneca. We need to make it as easy and convenient as possible for Australians to get vaccinated.

 

“Pharmacist vaccinators could also be much more widely utilised in vaccination hubs, aged care, and other settings. Our nursing colleagues have been doing a lot of the heavy lifting in terms of workforce surge, and we don’t want to see them burn out. We need to utilise our full vaccinator workforce, including local pharmacists.”

 

The Federal Government’s indemnity scheme already covers pharmacists administering COVID19 and PSA is dedicated to supporting pharmacists in delivering the COVID-19 vaccine both safely and effectively to the public, and pharmacists are on standby to support the strategy.

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Media contact: PSA media 0424 777 463

Pharmacists are the solution to the COVID-19 vaccine rollout!

Pharmacists are the most obvious solution to getting Australians vaccinated as quickly and conveniently as possible, according to the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA).

 

PSA National President, A/Prof Chris Freeman, is dismayed that pharmacist involvement in the rollout is still incredibly limited.

 

“Pharmacists are the most obvious solution to increasing accessibility to vaccinations. We already have a skilled, trusted, experienced, and easily accessible vaccinator workforce at governments’ disposal. And we already have established vaccination clinics in our shopping centres – the community pharmacy!

 

“Local pharmacists should be activated to alleviate pressure on vaccination hubs and to make it as easy and convenient as possible for Australians to get vaccinated. We need to utilise Australia’s full vaccinator workforce, including local pharmacists.

 

“Of Australia’s 5,800 pharmacies, only 65 pharmacies have actually been activated so far, with a further 300 to be activated by the end of July. This represents only 5% of pharmacies.

 

“In addition, the Federal Government’s indemnity scheme already covers pharmacists – they have been fully trained for months and are sick of being sidelined,” A/Prof Freeman said.

 

A/Prof Freeman went on to say that involving local pharmacists will encourage at-risk Australians to come forward and get vaccinated.

 

“Local pharmacists can target at-risk Australians, particularly the elderly who may be hesitant to commute to or queue at these hubs for extended periods of time. Local pharmacists can also reduce the rate of “no shows” by making it easier and more convenient to get vaccinated, and can reduce wastage by managing their appointments.

 

“Pharmacists are already vaccinating against COVID-19 in GP clinics, hubs, and remote and rural pharmacies, and have been administering influenza and other vaccines for many years.”

 

The Federal Government’s indemnity scheme already covers pharmacists administering COVID-19 and PSA is dedicated to supporting pharmacists in delivering the COVID-19 vaccine both safely and effectively to the public, and pharmacists are on standby to support the strategy.

 

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Media contact: PSA media 0424 777 463