Welcome to the February edition of i2P, the first for 2009.
And we start the new year with the tension that comes with a “credit crunch” and a recession to follow on. This phenomenon is remorselessly working its way through many global economies, and at multiple levels of the business spectrum.
It will be interesting to see how the year plays out and which pharmacies will be winners in adversity. It’s hard to call any trends for the moment, and events do move quickly when a new trend starts.
As they say, “when the going gets tough, the tough get going”.
Many opportunities are found in adversity, so do as one of our writers suggests and put some quality “think” time in and "think" your way to success.
At the close of 2008 we saw an unusual incident reported in the editorial of the Australian Journal of Pharmacy (AJP) where Matthew Eton, the editor, reported that neither he, nor people from the PDL board, had been invited to the Pharmacy Guild of Australia’s annual dinner.
Given that it was a newsworthy event with Minister Roxon providing the annual address, this indeed was a first class “snub”.
The AJP has a long tradition of being the record of pharmacy and has assiduously supported the pharmacy profession in all of its forms.
But take heart Matthew, you are in exclusive company because i2P did not get an invitation either.
It seems the PGA are progressively isolating themselves in their endeavours to conquer all elements of pharmacy, but things seem to be unravelling a bit. Sadly, if they continue to tie everything clinical to a community pharmacy we will see the profession of pharmacy start to self-destruct, because it is hindered in its natural process of renewal and growth.
This month I would like to introduce John Dunlop and Lesley Gregory, two new writers for i2P.
John is a New Zealand pharmacist with a successful track record of structuring, marketing and selling pharmacy services for a fee. His comments are very pertinent in the current climate and his comments are very welcome. We are looking to develop more content from New Zealand, but in John Dunlop we are off to a good start. Read his profile accessed from his article page and enjoy his first contribution.
Lesley Gregory is a pharmacist from the UK who has recently arrived in Western Australia. She is a pharmacy prescriber, and has educated UK pharmacists how to develop their skills in this activity.
Now she is in Australia to utilise her services in the training of Australian pharmacist prescribers.
This is all very topical stuff and we will be following Lesley’s activities while in Australia, and we wish her well in her endeavours.
We also urge Australian pharmacists to plug in with whatever becomes available in the prescribing area.
We also have with us again Mark Neuenschwander, an American writer who specialises in point of care developments, particularly those involving bar codes.
As pharmacy begins to automate many of its processes and procedures, the information base that Mark will build with i2P will become invaluable reference material.
Rollo Manning is back with his Pharma-Goss column and discusses the various pharmacy models that have, or should have developed.
Garry Boyd, Stephen Carbonara and Ken Stafford are back, and Ken is wondering why pharmacists are under-represented in community health groups.
Perhaps this might be an example where independent pharmacists might be more motivated to fill these gaps if there was stimulus from being able to do interesting work as clinicians and make a valid contribution to the community.
Barry Urquhart is back with some useful marketing tips and Harvey Mackay, who has some thoughts on some structured business thinking, as a means of determining the way ahead.
Pat Gallagher and Dr David More weigh in with some criticism of Australia’s e-health managers (in the form of NEHTA).
The culture of NEHTA is such that I don’t think it will ever get its act together.
Chris Wright wonders if the PGA is under siege (that seems to be a condition that is shaping up), Rollo Manning in his indigeous health report, comments on the tale of two towns (one indigenous and one not) with identical populations and compares the social capital and resources available to both.
No guess as to who loses out.
And finally, we have Dr Andrew Byrne with some commentary on alcoholism and the use of buprenorphine as a treatment.