Preparing pharmacists to work in general practice

New training to educate and equip pharmacists to work in general practice and improve health outcomes for patients is now available from the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA).
PSA has long advocated for pharmacists to be embedded wherever medicines are used, particularly in general practice.
 
PSA National President A/Prof Chris Freeman, one of the first pharmacists to work in a general practice in Australia, said PSA was committed to unlocking this opportunity for pharmacists.
 
“PSA’s Pharmacists in 2023 report states that by 2023, pharmacists should be embedded within healthcare teams to improve decision making for the safe and effective use of medicines,” A/Prof Freeman said.
“Pharmacists are already working successfully in general practice as part of PHN Trial Programs supported by PSA in North Western Melbourne, South Australia and Western Australia.
 
“The Government Workforce Incentive Program has been expanded to include pharmacists from January 2020, supporting general practices to employ pharmacists. This expansion will give pharmacists more opportunities to work in general practice.”
 
A/Prof Freemen said general practice pharmacists collaborate with GPs and other health professionals to improve medicine safety and manage patients with chronic illness.
 
“They improve health outcomes for patients by undertaking consultations with patients on the safe and quality use of medicines providing medication advice, conducting clinical audits and providing education to GPs and other practice staff,” he said.
 
PSA recommends that all pharmacists who want to work in general practice complete the PSA General Practice Pharmacist: Foundation Stage Training Program as a minimum training requirement.
 
PSA also provides a wide range of practice support tools including the Guidelines for General Practice Pharmacists, which are being released today, activity checklists and needs assessment for General Practice Pharmacists.
 
“As more pharmacists are embedded in inter-professional healthcare teams, PSA will support them to advance in their chosen career paths and provide the best possible care,” A/Prof Freeman said.
Further information about training and other practice support for pharmacists working in general practice can be found at www.psa.org.au/gppharmacist.
 
Media contact: PSA Media Phone 0487 922 176