UTI resources – NSW
On 13 November 2022, the NSW Government announced its commitment to:
- commence a 12-month clinical trial to evaluate allowing appropriately trained pharmacists to prescribe medication for urinary tract infections; and
- progress a state-wide pilot where appropriately trained pharmacists can prescribe medications for a range of minor conditions, in consultation with pharmacy regulators.
A urinary tract infection (UTI) is a general term used to describe an infection involving any part of the urinary system.
UTI’s are very common – particularly in women and the elderly. The most common type of UTIs are bladder infections, also known as cystitis.
Most UTIs are caused by bacteria which normally live harmlessly in the bowel. If these bacteria spread into the urinary system they can cause:
- urethritis – infection in the urethra
- cystitis – infection in the bladder
- pyelonephritis – infection in the kidneys.
UTIs are a common cause of hospitalisations that are potentially preventable. In NSW, it’s estimated over 21,000 potentially preventable hospital presentations per year were due to UTIs, a rate that worsens in rural and remote locations. Click here for more details.
The NSW Government, together with the University of Newcastle will deliver a 12-month state-wide clinical trial where appropriately trained pharmacists will be able to prescribe medications for UTIs.
The implementation of this large-scale pilot within a clinical trial framework will help the government and NSW Health to better understand, through robust data collection, the benefits and risks to patients of pharmacy prescribing in the context of the primary care setting in NSW.
The trial will capture data on treatment success, complications and any recommendations regarding the safe implementation for pharmacist prescribing for UTIs in NSW.
How can NSW start to get ready
1. Complete PSA training program: Managing Uncomplicated Cystitis. This training module will give you the knowledge you need to identify who can be supplied antibiotics for uncomplicated cystitis, and who will need to be referred to their GP. It will also give you the knowledge you need to choose the most appropriate antibiotic to treat uncomplicated cystitis.
2. Provide UTI Self Care Card. PSA self-care fact cards provide information for individuals about self-care and preventative health. The UTI fact card provides information for individuals on the signs and symptoms of cystitis, treatment, self-care information, links to further resources and when individuals should seek medical attention.
The Self Care program is designed for pharmacies to deliver improved health care to consumers. It provides resources and training to educate pharmacy staff, add value to the consumer’s experience, and aims to increase business growth with tailored health promotions and resources. To learn more click the button below.
Keep up to date on the latest information on the UTI trial, as well as many other important practice specific issues – renew your PSA membership!