Pharmacists mark MedSafety Week
9 November 2022
The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) is this week marking the seventh annual Med Safety Week, running from 7 – 13 November 2022.
Med Safety Week brings together regulators from 81 countries worldwide to focus on the important role that every healthcare professional, patient and carer has in reporting suspected side effects and contributing to medicine safety.
PSA National President Dr Fei Sim said that Med Safety Week was a timely reminder of the importance of medicine safety in preventing hospitalisations and improving quality of life.
“The use of medicines is the most common intervention in health care. The safe and appropriate use of medicines transforms people’s health for the better,” Dr Sim said.
“PSA landmark Medicine Safety: Take Care report found 250,000 Australians are hospitalised each year and another 400,000 present to emergency departments as a result of medicine-related problems. At least half of this harm could have been prevented.
“Pharmacists already play an important role in medicine safety, but there are opportunities for us to do more.
“Pharmacists, as medicine safety experts, should be embedded wherever medicines are used to reduce the risk of medicine-related problems.
“All pharmacists, regardless of their practice setting, continue to play an increasingly important role in ensuring the Quality Use of Medicines.”
Dr Sim said that ensuring pharmacist services are available relied heavily on managing workforce capacity.
“As pharmacist services continue to expand, we need to ensure that consultations are appropriately funded based on time and complexity, possibly through the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS).
“This is something that PSA has been calling on the Federal Government to explore to ensure that access to expert pharmacist advice remains available to all Australians,” Dr Sim concluded.
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