CPC23: MRNs extended until 2024
5 May 2023
The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) has welcomed the extension of Medication Review Numbers (MRNs), allowing accredited pharmacists to continue delivering complex medication management reviews for Australian patients.
All provider numbers (known as the MRN) of Accredited Pharmacists were set to expire on 1 July 2023, ceasing Federal Government-funded medication management services in patients’ homes (HMR) and residential aged care facilities (RMMR).
The Department of Health Assistant Secretary of Pharmacy David Laffan announced the extension during his address at the inaugural Consultant Pharmacists Conference CPC23 in Adelaide, which allows Accredited Pharmacists to continue to provide and claim for HMR and RMMR.
PSA National President Dr Fei Sim FPS said that the continuation of medication review services by Accredited Pharmacists was a positive step amid uncertainty within the sector.
“HMRs and RMMRs are an important tool for promoting a model of patient-centred care,” Dr Sim said.
“PSA raised urgent concerns with the government about the planned expiry of MRNs on 1 July, which would immediately and significantly impact patient safety.
“Mr Laffan confirmed today that Accredited Pharmacists will be able to continue delivering these effective HMR and RMMR services and Accreditation will remain valid until the new APC standards are finalised or to 30 June 2024.
Dr Sim also pointed to PSA’s advocacy on the implementation of the Federal Government’s $350 million investment in pharmacists within residential aged care facilities.
Speaking at CPC23, Mr Laffan also confirmed that the program provides for one full-time pharmacist per 250 beds in a residential aged care home. For facilities with less than 50 beds, a pharmacist will be on-site at least one day every week.
Whilst the announcement by Minister Butler regarding the change of the onsite-aged care pharmacist program to a community pharmacy only out-reach program was not expected, PSA continues to call for flexibility in its delivery and maximum pharmacist time on-ground in these facilities.
“No doubt some community pharmacies are well equipped, experienced and have the expertise to deliver tailored services to aged care facilities, PSA continues to advocate for flexibility in the delivery model.
“The profession must be involved in the implementation of the program as there are implications on service delivery and training requirements.
“The program must meet the recommendations from the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety to facilitate quality use of medicines through the work of Accredited Pharmacists.
“We need to maximise pharmacist time on-ground in aged care facilities to undertake systems, governance, operational and clinical duties,” Dr Sim said.
“We appreciate that this is a turbulent time for pharmacists, and I want to assure all pharmacists that PSA is working hard toward a viable pharmacy sector that works for patients and our profession.
“I sincerely thank Mr Laffan for the update provided at PSA’s Consultant Pharmacist Conference, CPC23, and for his ongoing work with the pharmacy sector.”