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From the desk of the editor - Introducing current ideas, perspectives and issues, to the profession of pharmacy
Issue 30: September 2004
to the September edition of i2P E-Magazine.
You will note
that our articles have increased in number for this month, so we
would like to thank our existing writers, as well as the new writers
We also draw your
attention to a negative article published in the Australian, with
a link published with other media commentary further along this
is a relative newcomer to Australia, having been involved in the
pharmacy scene in the UK, Europe, Middle East and now Australia.
He brings a broad
range of experiences with him and this is evident when you read
his article on workplace reform.
He begins well,
offering a pathway starting from consumer need.
Letters to the Editor - A Reader's Perspective
Note: Ken Stafford had some words to say on pharmacy media coverage
in the August edition of i2P E-Magazine.
received a response from a member of the media community who was
also interested in pharmacy.
we have never embraced media coverage as a subject before, we thought
we might carry the exercise forward and invited the person responding
to become a writer for our publication.
are pleased to say that there was an acceptance, and Annona Pearse
has submitted her first article further along this edition.
strictly a Letter to the Editor, but we could not allow the Bulletin
Magazine comments on Pat Gallagher (our IT specialist) to go unnoticed.
He is a contender for Australia's smartest 100 people list, currently
being compiled by the Bulletin.
We happen to agree with the comments, and it is reflection on all
i2P writers that they are in good company.
Neil Johnston - Management Consultant Perspective
stated objective of the pharmacy profession is to deliver good health
There is no basic
disagreement in principle, but there certainly is in the method
At the point
of conception, and all the steps leading up to the delivery of a
patient program, there appears to be added layer upon layer of procedural
complexity, which ends up burying the patient, and leaving the pharmacist
bewildered in the mountain of paperwork
Rollo Manning - A Regular Column Reporting the News Behind the News
Pharmacy ownership and the PBS
Tendering a better option for service
PBS income dominates turnover
the knowledge with pharmacy graduates
of the month
An address was
given by Rollo at a conference looking at the future of the PBS
on the relevance of pharmacy ownership to the PBS.
The Power Point
presentation can be viewed by
Neil Retallick - A Friendly Society Perspective
couple of months ago, one of the television stations in Adelaide
conducted its annual review of pharmacy prices.
The segment was
aired on a current affairs program and demonstrated that:
(i) There is
a relatively wide retail price band for any product, and
(ii) Some pharmacies
charge less for some products than others.
A further ‘discovery’
was that if a pharmacy bought a product at a significantly reduced
promotional price, it lowered its retail price significantly as
well, while stocks lasted
Con Berbatis - A Pharmacy Researcher Perspective
note : Clinical testing ranks high as a national strategy to implement
for community pharmacists in Australia.
SCRIP (Canada) is the largest controlled study in the world of clinical
testing of patients by community pharmacists.
It demonstrated pharmacist screening of cholesterol and pharmacist-GP
collaboration to be outstandingly successful for patients and pharmacies.
smaller controlled study in Hobart (2001-2002) showed monthly home
cholesterol monitoring with exercise and diet coaching of patients
on statins by pharmacists resulted in lower blood lipids and lower
results of both studies mean cholesterol testing and education by
pharmacists improve cholesterol levels in all patients , increases
statin use in untreated patients and cuts doses in those already
these controlled studies emphasise that clinical testing should
be taken far more seriously by our pharmacy educators , national
bodies and the Fourth Agreement negotiators on both the pharmacy
and government sides.
Robert Forsythe - Globetrotting Community Pharmacist Perspective
is perhaps a happy co-incidence that a review of the QCPP accreditation
standards has co-incided with a workplace review for community pharmacy.
It is the author's
opinion that these two processes are linked.
True quality will
not be achieved without an appropriately staffed and motivated workforce.
Likewise it is
difficult to attain a motivated and appropriate workforce without
appropriate quality control procedures.
Over the coming
few months I will be presenting some ideas in ways the profession
can move forward to meet the challenges that lie ahead.
Karalyn Huxhagen - A Queensland PSA Councilor Perspective
Management Advisors (HMA) were appointed by the Pharmacy Guild of
Australia in late 2002 to identify those areas of current practice
that may, with the provision of appropriate training, be assumed
by dispensary and/or technicians.
The draft submissions
and phase 1 report were released to stakeholders in early August
2004 with final submissions being due by the 8th September, 2004.
This paper has
some excellent and interesting recommendations within it.
The paper also
highlights the various ‘barriers’ that would need to be addressed
if any of the recommendations from the paper were to be adopted.
Simon Rudderham - A Community Pharmacist Perspective
on a very rare weekend away, I had the pleasure of wandering into
a branded pharmacy.
I had forgotten
my contact lens solution and thought I would go and pick some up.
It was a relatively
busy pharmacy, with a large floorspace, and for a change for other
pharmacies of that size that I had previously worked in, it was
quite well staffed.
After a bit of
wandering around, checking out prices and products, I took my bottle
of Bausch and Lomb to the register.
When the product
failed to scan after two attempts, the pharmacy assistant tried
to type the barcode in.
As the queue behind
me started to increase in size and malcontent, she called over a
more senior pharmacy assistant.
Trying to be helpful
I politely suggested that the point of sale may have a sundries
The staff member
informed me that the sundries button had been forbidden by the manager,
as it meant that purchases could not be tracked.
Annona Pearse - From a media perspective
mass media – television, newspapers, magazines, journals and the
Internet to name but a few sources – is where the majority of us
receive our information.
The media has,
therefore, a significant role in defining our reality.
discourses of health are key components of both informative and
advertorial driven media.Such discourses include
those of body image, body maintenance, ‘normal’ sexuality, illness
and treatment .
Pharmacy, and the role of Pharmacists, can be included
in all of the above discourses.
Ken Stafford - A Consultant Pharmacist Perspective
like I might have touched a raw nerve last month when I questioned
the slant the media places on pharmacy stories.
OK, I am aware
that stories are run to meet certain criteria within media outlets
but I get somewhat tired of continually being faced with negativity
in reports on pharmacy and pharmacists.
As a group, pharmacists
are not perfect, but who is?
We must, however,
be doing something right to continue running so high in the trustworthy
polls despite attempts to pull us down.
Chris Arblaster, PhD - A Consumer Self-Care Perspective
departments and Health departments around the country are becoming
increasingly concerned about the continued rise in the number of
clandestine laboratories obtaining pseudoephedrine (PSE) containing
products and converting it to methylamphetamine (speed).
amount of this (PSE) is obtained from retail pharmacies by “runners”
either masquerading as genuine consumers in need, by shoplifting
or by break-ins.
of single active products to S3 in 2002 has certainly reduced the
sales of these products but forced the criminals to obtain combination
solid dose forms.
Heather Pym - A Division of General Practice Perspective
recently returned from a stimulating three days at the National
Medicines Conference where many pharmacists, medical practitioners,
academics, consumers and other health professionals met and participated
in a program on Quality Use of Medicines and all the many related
issues around this.
I was particularly
intrigued by the presentations looking into the future and intelligently
assessing the various scenarios that may well present as our challenges
and opportunities in the health arena. Several points were raised
amongst many that related to pharmacy, pharmacists and society’s
use of medicines.
Les Brener - A Digital Imaging Perspective
was the title of a presentation by Shane Martin of Kodak at the
PMA Australian Convention in May Accessories are a vital element
in camera stores these days, especially in view of the low margins
attributed to reselling of cameras.
the camera store the ability to increase sales and in particular
profits and pharmacists should also not be averse to these points.
This article will
discuss the sales of batteries, which all pharmacies sell in any
event and many of the principles outlined can apply to many other
Terry Irvine - Community Pharmacist Perspective
many years of working for others, subsequent to spending nearly
half my life working for myself, my wife and I decided it was time
for us to call the shots again, and even though a number of pharmacists
of my age have been retired for a number of years we began a search
for a pharmacy that met a number of criteria.
Our search ranged
from Gladstone in Queensland to a small village near the South Coast
of NSW. We felt fortunate that we had sought advice from Bruce Annabel
of Johnston Rork as he managed to steer us away from some of the
pharmacies that, while good for others, could have been very challenging