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- Issue 81: April 2009
- Issue 80: March 2009
- Issue 79: February 2009
- Issue 78: December 2008
- Issue 77: November 2008
- Issue 76: October 2008
- Issue 75: September 2008
- Issue 74: August 2008
- Issue 73: July 2008
- Issue 72: June 2008

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We are in the process of moving all of our articles to the new site.

In the meantime you can find them on the old i2P site.

Issue 62: July 2007



Welcome to the July 2007 edition of Information to Pharmacists (i2P). This month we have commenced a new column on Indigenous Health and social issues. Rollo Manning is our resident expert in this area, and he is able to give insights as to how indigenous problems have evolved to a state of national emergency, as articulated by our prime minister. It is time that the profession of pharmacy should have an understanding of these problems and become part of the solution- we cannot in all conscience, simply be interested bystanders. I am sure Rollo would appreciate any enquiry or comment if there is something you would like to be informed about.

Your Say

Your Say is the column reserved for subscriber (or other source) comment relating to i2P articles, or reportage or general comment on the profession and industry at large. All posts must be identified, but the editor will suppress name and contact details if there is a sensitive reason.

PSA News Releases

PSA News - the latest from the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia. Keep in touch with activities of the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia and their professional support for Australian pharmacists. This month:   * Get your nominations in for the PSA Excellence Awards   * Pharmacy Australia Congress (PAC) - An invitation to be part of pharmacy history  * Consumers must retain ability to report adverse reactions  * PSA launches its new Self Care Pharmacy Finder

Selected Global Pharmacy Publications

This section of i2P is designed to be an experimental section to introduce other publications that have similarities to i2P, but are based in other countries. The globalisation of Australian pharmacy started around the year 2000. It has had minimal impact up to 2004, but that is now changing and i2P must reflect that change. There are many aspects of globalisation not yet fully understood, but I think that to most of us, globalisation means that we must be quicker on our feet and have pharmacy practices with sufficient critical mass to withstand global pressures. Depending on the model of pharmacy chosen, and its location, global pressures will vary. As pharmacists we must begin to open up our minds to new ideas and innovative ways of delivering pharmacy practice.

Find it Here

As part of our information service, i2P informs on Conferences, Workshops and Seminars or press releases that may be of interest to pharmacists. PSA event information will be found here, but PSA news will continue to be published separately in the section reserved for PSA press releases. Pharmacy organisations may submit material for publication, preferably in digital format (Word document). This month: * Kevin Rudd opens Health Information Pharmacy Morningside * Mike Lazarow Croatia Tour * Pharmacy Australia Congress (PAC) * Dynasties of China Tour - organised by Mike Lazarow in conjunction with the   ACPP&M * FIP Pharmaceutuical Sciences World Congress and the 67th Annual Congress (Beijing, China) * The Pharmacy 2007 Conference - organised by the Friendly Societies, this conference has gone from strength to strength each year to become the premier pharmacy conference. Don't be disappointed - book now to ensure your reservation in Hobart this year. * New release - Therapeutic Guidelines Gastrointestinal 4 2006. Order your copy to keep pace with current developments and guidelines.

Health News from Around the World

This section of i2P aims to keep readers informed of global news that may affect pharmacy. Readers are encouraged to comment on any news item by contacting the editor through the "Contact Us" panel located on the home page. News items and topics displayed range from drug-related news, Information Technology, medical communications, medical research breakthroughs, management and marketing issues. Because this news area is dynamic and changes daily, readers should immediately bookmark any links that they find interesting. Response to any item will be published through the "Letters (Your Say) " column.


July i2P - Pharma-goss With Rollo Manning This Month: * The rent and PBS Question * NDPSC and the Independence of a Regulator * Class Action Against Psych Drug

Pharmacy Design

Just on 40 years ago when I bought in to my first pharmacy partnership in Katoomba NSW, I had the opportunity to create a new shop design that better fitted the workflows for that time. The pharmacy was narrow (but long), so innovation that shortened the distance between customer/patient and the pharmacy staff was important, as was any space-saving design of fittings and fixtures. For the dispensary, that meant the installation of a lockable “sliding stack” made by Bownbuilt/Steelbuilt finished in a white gloss. This system was able to accommodate 90 percent of dispensary stock in one corner of the dispensary, leaving enough room for the construction of a counselling room. The original dispensary had been totally enclosed, and because of the high volume of counselling work at that time (common for most pharmacists), and the need for an extended walk to the front of the pharmacy, I decided to remove all partitions between the dispensary and the front of the shop. The intent was to encourage patients to walk the full distance to me (because they could now see me).  The dispensary bench was fitted with an abbreviated partition on the front (to chest height) and it had a ledge on top sufficient for prescription signing by patients.

A Future Model of Healthcare

This month we’ve all heard in the news about the rural doctor shortage, and how country towns are trying to entice doctors to work in rural areas. It seems as though there is a sense of impossibility surrounding this whole affair. Quite simply there aren’t enough doctors who want to work in rural areas of Australia, and it doesn’t seem as though this will get better any time soon. A reform of the Australian healthcare system is sorely needed.

It Seems to be an Unhappy Birthday for the CSO

I’m writing this on the 30 June – the last day of the first year of the CSO.  Gosh, it has been an interesting time - never more than during this last week.  As the accredited wholesalers pushed towards their final shipments, those that will determine whether or not they have achieved their CSO obligations, the CSO Standards, they have had to deal with considerable distraction.  Symbion’s wholesaling business has been sold to venture capitalists, much to the chagrin of Sigma.  The sale process must have soaked up management time at Symbion and also at Sigma where the focus would have been on working out how to buy a competitor without owning it, how to control it and profit from it without falling foul of ACCC scrutiny. API announced its profit result last week, or lack thereof, re-igniting speculation that this business is also up for sale.  Management there has its hands full too.  Perhaps the groundwork put in by Sigma on Symbion will not be wasted after all.

Indigenous Health

FEATURE Aboriginal affairs – the recovery plan By Rollo Manning 1st July 2007 The intent of the Prime Minister’s actions in the Northern Territory is clear and laudable. Fix the problems that lead to child sexual abuse.

Low Carbohydrate Diets and Ketosis

Editor's Note: This month Stuart Adams gives an explanation regarding certain areas of weight loss management, theory and fact. Because weight management is such a topical subject, pharmacy needs to get the right programs in place if it is to be a participant. Readers are invited to direct any questions to Stuart if further elaboration is required (his email address is found if you follow the link attached to his name in the main title area).

India, no Longer a Pharma Backwater.

Indian pharmaceutical machine manufacturers (IPMM’s) have seriously come of age in the last five years, with over 350 facilities involved in the production of all manner of pharma devices, including assisted dispensing equipment. Some 200 companies have formed a collaborative agreement with the common goal of sharing resources, keeping members informed of global trade activity and technological advancements and innovations. So successful has this unified approach been, members of IPMM now enjoy a turnover of US$500mil. Not surprisingly, 40% is exported to various markets worldwide.

Pharmacists' Impressions of Buprenorphine Treatment in Victoria. Some Benefits, Some Difficulties.

Editor's Note:Dr Byrne (and his associates) advocate for better policies which are proven to reduce risks for drug users and the general community under a framework in parallel with Australia's official policy of harm minimization. The findings of the New South Wales Drug Summit recommend better access to methadone, detoxification and other dependency treatments. It also advised investigating alternative services such as supervised injecting centres, leading to the opening of the Sydney Medically Supervised Injecting Centre in 2001. Dr Andrew Byrne has been involved in opioid treatments from a primary care background for 20 years at the same site in Redfern, an inner suburb of Sydney. He is recognised worldwide as a specialist in the addiction field and was involved in the seminal stages of the Chapter of Addiction Medicine, Royal Australasian College of Physicians. He received the Dole-Nyswander award from the American Association for the Treatment of Opioid Dependence in April 2006. In this edition of i2P, Dr Byrne comments on some recent research involving Victorian pharmacists providing methadone and buprenorphine services for narcotic addiction.

Labor Fails to Join The Dots!

Today (28/06/07) Kevin Rudd released an overview of a key element of the Rudd Labor Party Health Policy. The essentials of the policy release can be understood from the following: “Mr Rudd launched Federal Labor’s New Directions paper - Fresh Ideas, Future Economy: Preventative health care for our families and our future economy. Mr Rudd said Federal Labor will: Develop a National Preventative Health Strategy to provide a blueprint for tackling the burden of chronic disease currently caused by obesity, tobacco, and excessive consumption of alcohol. The Strategy will be supported by an expert Taskforce. Shift the focus from so-called “six minute medicine” in general practice by beginning a reform process to provide incentives for GPs to practice quality preventative health care; Broaden the focus of the major health care agreement between the Commonwealth and the States and Territories beyond hospital funding by developing a National Preventative Health Care Partnership; and In its first term, commission the Treasury to produce a series of definitive reports on the impact of chronic disease on the Australian economy, and the economic benefits of a greater focus on prevention in health care. The cost of providing health care and the cost of rising demand for health care is expected to spiral. Federal Government spending on health care will increase from 3.8 per cent of GDP in 2006-07 to 7.3 per cent in 2046-47.”


There's nothing wrong with regulation … that a revolution would not redress. The dynamism and fluidity of the economy and marketplace dictate the need for change and innovation.   Sadly, regulation can be and is a heavy burden for business to bear, and costly too.   Gary Banks, the chair of the Productivity Commission estimated in late 2006 that Australia was incurring a cost of some $7 billion per annum because of the need to comply with “needless” regulations that were imposed by approximately 1,300 regulatory authorities.

Regulated work volumes?……………..I Don’t Think So!

I confess to being a touch taken back recently when I read in one of the “not free, or impartial” industry publications of a survey asking, “Should” Pharmacy Boards stipulate how many prescriptions may safely be actioned daily by Pharmacists’. As that talented young fellow from South Australia that makes a handsome living wielding a tennis racket with some ferocity say’s………C’mon!

Do we Value Senior Pharmacists?

In the midst of Fourth Agreement problems impacting on community pharmacy, there seems to be an emergence of trend that works to discriminate against senior members of the pharmacy profession. In bygone years, it was this segment of the profession that provided most of the regular locum hours for pharmacist proprietors and managers. In the changing panorama of community pharmacy we are seeing the emergence of an erosion of rates of pay and the working conditions of employment for all salaried pharmacists, young or old.  What started as a shortage of pharmacists some three years ago is now turning into a surplus, and there are a number of drivers fuelling the situation.

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