fbpx

Tas expands pharmacy services to UTI treatment

12 February 2024

 

The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) welcomes the Tasmanian Government’s announcement that pharmacists will be authorised to supply treatment for uncomplicated urinary tract infections (UTIs) from March this year.

Every community pharmacist in Tasmania will be able to take part in additional training to offer the program which is modelled on services already operating in other states.

PSA Tasmania President David Peachey MPS said the move utilises the state’s most accessible health care professionals to continue supporting timely patient care.

“PSA welcomes Minister Barnett’s move to give Tasmanians greater access to safe health care when and where they need it,” Mr Peachey said.

“We have already seen UTI prescribing programs work successfully around the country – and in Queensland for quite a few years now.

“We know that around half of women will experience a UTI in their lifetime, and that timely access to treatment is key to alleviating discomfort and preventing further complications or hospitalisation.

“Pharmacists are key to strengthening the health care system. Regional and rural communities across Tasmania will benefit enormously from being able to access treatment from their local pharmacist, freeing up our hardworking rural GPs for more complex patient needs.”

PSA’s Managing uncomplicated cystitis training program is now available to all Tasmanian pharmacists. Successful completion allows the pharmacist to provide an assessment and treatment, if deemed appropriate, for uncomplicated UTIs in women aged 18 to 65, once the program commences from 1 March 2024.

Media contact:   Georgia Clarke   M: 0480 099 798  E: georgia.clarke@psa.org.au

Unleashing the potential of pharmacists: Scope of practice review

31 January 2024

 

The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) welcomes the release of the first issue paper from the Unleashing the Potential of our Health Workforce Scope of Practice Review (the Cormack Review) last week.

The issues paper recognises the existing barriers that are preventing Australia’s healthcare professionals, including pharmacists, from practising to their full and top of scope.

PSA National President A/Prof Fei Sim FPS said that the paper highlights both the urgent and the long-term need for pharmacists to contribute to improving access to care and medicine safety through working to their full and top of scope.

“The Cormack Review’s first issues paper confirms that inconsistent regulations, unnecessary restrictions on practice, and siloed workforces are having a detrimental impact on patients,” A/Prof Sim said.

“As pharmacists, we welcome the paper as the first step in the review process, however we need to now look towards solutions.

“PSA is making the case for solutions that recognise the potential of pharmacists as vital members of the healthcare team.

“PSA sees a future where community pharmacies are supported and funded to fulfill their primary care role as urgent care clinics where pharmacists can triage, manage and consult on a range of acute common ailments.

“This includes the ability to prescribe PBS medicines, harnessing the accessibility of pharmacists to deliver timely, cost-effective care – dramatically reducing patients’ out-of-pocket costs.

“We see a future where pharmacists are embedded in multidisciplinary health care teams wherever medicines are prescribed, supplied, administered, or reviewed, and where pharmacists are utilised to support patients in managing chronic health conditions – whether that is a medicine or a referral to another healthcare provider.

“To achieve these aims, regulatory, financial and systems barriers must be recognised and removed, and only until then, we can see the full potential of pharmacists unleashed.

“As the next phase of consultation begins, we are continuing to advocate directly to government for the future of our profession and importantly, the future of our patients.”

A/Prof Fei Sim currently sits on the Cormack Review’s Expert Advisory Committee, representing the pharmacy profession.

Media contact:   Georgia Clarke   M: 0480 099 798  E: georgia.clarke@psa.org.au

Access to RSV vaccine critical to its efficacy

19 January 2024

 

Following the welcome approval of a new vaccine to protect older Australians against the highly infectious respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) is urging governments to ensure its accessibility for those most at risk.

This week the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) approved AREXVY for Australians aged 60 and over, the first RSV vaccine approved in Australia.

PSA National President A/Prof Fei Sim FPS said that allowing pharmacists to administer the vaccine would significantly improve its uptake and in turn, reduce hospitalisations from severe infections.

“Having a vaccine on the market is not enough, we need to ensure that it’s as accessible as possible to those who need it most,” A/Prof Sim said.

“Pharmacist immunisers are limited by red-tape and regulation imposed by states and territories, preventing them from fulfilling their potential to administer all vaccines to all at-risk Australians.

“Millions of Australians attend pharmacies for their vaccinations, with more than 15 million COVID-19 and influenza vaccines administered by pharmacists over the last few years.

“By making vaccinations more accessible to vulnerable groups, we can limit the serious health complications RSV can cause and in turn reduce hospitalisations.

“Allowing pharmacists to practise to the top of their scope makes efficient use of health resources, benefitting the broader health system.

“I urge all state and territory governments to authorise pharmacists to provide the RSV vaccine, supporting access to preventive care and keeping older Australians healthy and well.

“This access should extend to all vaccines, for all eligible people, in all locations where pharmacists work.

“Reducing barriers to vaccination, reducing barriers to care, should always be our priority,” A/Prof Sim concluded.

AREXVY will soon be made available nationally, on private prescription.

Media contact:   Georgia Clarke   M: 0480 099 798  E: georgia.clarke@psa.org.au

Pharmacists welcome Climate and Health strategy

7 December 2023

 

The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) lauds the Federal Government’s first National Health and Climate Strategy released this week, recognising the urgent need to build climate-resilient health systems and limit the emissions created by the health care network.

In welcoming the Strategy, PSA National President Dr Fei Sim FPS thanked Federal Health Minister Mark Butler MP and Assistant Minister for Health Ged Kearney MP for their leadership in recognising the impact of climate change on health.

“The leadership of the Federal Government in acknowledging and assessing the impacts of climate change on the health of our population and the provision of care is crucial, because our health system, and our country need to do better,” Dr Sim said.

 

“Climate change is already having a significant and direct impact not only on the health of our every person in Australia, but also on the way we deliver quality health care.

“The rapidly changing climate adversely affects the health of the nation. It disproportionately harms vulnerable individuals. And we all need to work together to be part of the solution.

Dr Sim also reiterated the urgent need for environmentally sustainable practices across the pharmacy and broader health network.

“As a health issue, pharmacists and all health professionals have a professional obligation to work towards limiting the negative health impacts caused by climate change through direct action, leadership and patient support.

“Proactively responding and preparing for a changing climate will continue to alter many aspects of professional practice.

“In 2022 we released the first PSA Environmental Sustainability position statement, reaffirming our commitment to guiding pharmacists in improving our sector’s environmental footprint.

“PSA has led the way, having implemented measures across our organisation that contribute to a more sustainable future.

“We all have a responsibility to move toward sustainable practices, whether in the pharmacy or as an organisation – a responsibility that we take seriously and continue to develop and improve on,” Dr Sim concluded.

PSA’s 2022 Environmental Sustainability Statement is available here.

​​

Media contact:   Georgia Clarke   M: 0480 099 798  E: georgia.clarke@psa.org.au

SA’s 24/7 pharmacies deliver quality care and peace of mind

4 December 2023

 

The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) welcomes the Malinauskas Government’s investment in supporting pharmacies to open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to deliver expert care when and where South Australians need it.

Three pharmacies have been selected to participate in the program, covering Central, North and South Adelaide.

PSA South Australia President Dr Manya Angley FPS said the government’s support for around-the-clock access to pharmacist expertise will reduce pressure on emergency departments.

“Many South Australian parents know the stress of sick kids, especially when illness strikes overnight,” Dr Angley said.

“24-hour access to pharmacists gives Adelaide residents the peace of mind that if they get sick or need after hours health advice, they will be able to access expert care from a trusted health professional.

“Giving South Australians another option for after-hours care will improve health outcomes, while also reducing pressure on our emergency departments.

“We know that 250,000 Australians are hospitalised each year, with another 400,000 presenting to emergency departments as a result of medication misadventure.

“Health care needs can change unpredictably at all hours of the day or night. People who require medicines for pain management or other palliative care medicines can be assured they can access them around-the-clock, along with the advice and expertise of pharmacists ready to help.

“PSA is looking forward to continuing our work with the South Australian Government to improve access to quality healthcare through our excellent pharmacists.”

Media contact:   Georgia Clarke   M: 0480 099 798  E: georgia.clarke@psa.org.au