Welcome to the July 2013 homepage edition of i2P-Information to Pharmacists E-Magazine.
As we pass through the end of the financial year and look back with some disappointment at the divisions that have occurred in pharmacy over the past decade, we see once again a renewed call for unity within the various pharmacy leadership groups.
Pause a little and just look at the lack of balance that does not bode well for the whole of the profession and the industry at large.
Pharmacy definitely needs a renewal, a new focus and a unifying leadership body because currently, we see:
* An ever-expanding list of unemployable pharmacists.
* A pharmacist working wage not much short of a supermarket shelf filler
* Entry costs for pharmacy ownership rising to impossible levels
* Pharmacies entering into bankruptcy because they sheltered behind restrictive legislation and took their eye off the ball.
* A profession that has not been enabled to build a professional services base in a timely fashion.
* An anti-pharmacy sentiment from industry and government seeking new ways to control pharmacy for their own benefit.
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Volume 5 Number 1
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Volume 6 Number 1
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Editor's note: While editing this article I found myself thinking back to the start of my own pharmacy career, completing an apprenticeship in a pharmacy that had characteristics not unlike this current offering by Sartoretto-Verna,
There was only one difference, and that was to conserve on establishment costs. a residence was usually attached.
I then got to thinking that this would be an excellent model for young pharmacists trying to establish their own pharmacy. I have expanded some thoughts below the notes provided by the owner.
Legislation permitting pharmacist prescribing, was finally passed in June, to enable those 14 pharmacists who had satisfied the educational requirements to gain prescribing rights at the end of 2012.
The seven pharmacists based in hospital will now be able to prescribe funded medications within their working environments after having their scope of practice signed off by their clinical leaders.
Hospital pharmacist prescribers are slightly more fortunate than their primary care based colleagues, in that their funders will see their roles as being expanded expedient and practical.
We have yet to see whether these pharmacists will be able to attract an increase in salary for the extra responsibility they now have.
In a matter of weeks, an innovation occurs in Australian Pharmacy.
An innovation that has nothing to do with PBS or government subsidies or the TGA and nothing to do with prescriptions and dispensing medicines, it has nothing to do with stacking groceries or cutting margins on already paper-fine profits, but it has everything to do with health and wellbeing.
In a matter of weeks we begin the rollout of what should have been a fundamental part of the service and revenue mix of pharmacies for decades past but wasn’t and for no good reason.
In a matter of weeks the innovation which is PharmaChoice comes to life.
By rolling over in this cough mixture debate, and by not helping the public understand that we ARE experts in drug therapy (or are we according to the latest polls?),
I'm seeing families now who's kids are given three options for cough now.
And in no particular order...
Editor's Note: Joe Conway is a young pharmacist who is trying to improve the working conditions and salaries for employed pharmacists.
He meets a lot of cynicism when talking to pharmacy owners.
The attitude of some (not all) pharmacy owners is to peg salaries and wages back to a point where the investment in becoming and remaining as a pharmacist just gets too difficult, and the profession begins to lose valuable human resources.
I am very well aware of the difficulties facing pharmacy owners, but they are in a position to rectify their issues with careful business planning and vision.
Pharmacy owners should also keep in mind that the pharmacy employees of today are the pharmacy owners of tomorrow. If that channel becomes blocked for whatever reason, the pharmacy owner retirement plan becomes bankrupt.
The larger the pool of well paid employed pharmacists the more your pharmacy is competed for when the retirement plan is activated.
ONLINE OR IN PERSON
“Don’t hide behind the internet.”
This recent telling statement by an online-savvy thirty-something female professional is definitive in itself.
It was uttered during a telephone conversation in which she was expressing frustrations about poor and inadequate communication skills of many people in business.
Over the last month I have read a number of articles which reaffirm the importance of your business having an on line and/or social media presence.
I sourced these articles whilst researching for my presentations for the social media workshops that I recently presented.
The first article was based on research carried out for the Centre for Retail Research.
The subsequent report, Retail Futures 2018, predicts that more than one in five of Britain’s high street shops will close by 2018 as more customers turn to the internet for their shopping.
One of the most frequent reasons for calling the Pharmacists’ Support Service is stress with about 50% of callers reporting that they are experiencing stress.
I found this great article about stress when researching support services on the internet.
I recommend you read this and think about your own level of stress and your own self-care.
You may also find the information useful when talking to others be they customers, patients, staff, colleagues, friends and family.
If you want to talk anonymously to another pharmacist about your feelings of stress call the Pharmacists’ Support Service on 1300 244 910. The service is provided by pharmacists for pharmacists every day of the year between 8.00am and 11.00pm.
The website from which this article is sourced is http://www.betterrelationships.com.au/wellbeing/stress
Recently, my grandson George borrowed the Haviannas I schlepped home from Sao Paulo for my daughter.
He put them on all by himself.
We think we may have a fashionista on our hands—a theory further supported a week later when he requested the doctor use fluorescent pink fiberglass to make a cast for his little brother Isaac’s broken arm.
In a previous life when I was a minister, a nine-year-old in my church turned in a prayer request: “Dear Pastor Mark, I broke my arm and it's a pain in the neck. Your friend, Jason”
As a cancer survivor, even though nearly 10 years have passed since my diagnosis and treatment, this disease is never far from my mind.
I am often approached by well-meaning people who want to tell me about miracle cures and conspiracy theories about cancer cures.
Cancer patients are a particularly vulnerable group, so why can't more be done to protect us from being misled with false hope, or worse, being exploited emotionally and financially?
This material has been provided by the Orthomolecular Medicine News Service
http://orthomolecular.org/subscribe.html ) and is archived at
The article was jointly written by Steve Hickey PhD and William B Grant PhD
(OMNS June 17, 2013) Tuberculosis (TB) was formerly one of the most devastating scourges of mankind and remains a leading cause of death.
The disease has been with humans over recorded history, and likely throughout the evolution of our species.
Through the industrial revolution and into the 20 century, TB became a long term medical emergency particularly with the poor.
Roughly one person in four was dying of the disease in England and similar death rates were observed in other modernising countries.
One solution was to isolate the afflicted in sanatoria.
The fresh air and sunlight solution practiced in those times may have been at least partly effective.
Only recently I became aware of how heated and deeply ingrained are the views for and against the use of vaccines.
It is a venomous issue and I touched on some aspects in a recent article titled “Vaccination Warfare - With Already High Rates What is the Issue?”
I obviously touched a nerve, and a range of comments were generated to such an extent that as editor, I had to ban one of the comments authors because his comment breached the reasonable guidelines we have in place, to ensure a semblance of balance is maintained.
I am shocked at the response by this doctor who holds a responsible position involving clinical excellence within the NSW hospital system.
CNN recently interviewed a young woman doctor who recently returned from working in Africa. The reporter asked her the principal difference between practicing medicine in Mozambique and in the United States.
“In Mozambique the people bring me little gifts,” she told the interviewer. “A fistful of walnuts, some eggs, a chicken, whatever they can to express their gratitude.
“In the States,” she said, “I get sued.”
The urgency to change the current model of pharmacy increased dramatically in the first half of 2013 as it became obvious that drug manufacturers had substantially achieved their target to commoditise pharmaceutical drugs (aided by warehouse type pharmacies).
Commoditising requires the management of ever expanding volumes of drugs coupled with severe financial losses, when the market changes suddenly, usually under the influence of government policy changes.
I recently touched on aspects of vaccine damage (mainly in the areas of autism) in an earlier article. “Vaccination Warfare - With Already High Rates What is the Issue?”and Vaccination Intensity
To further research the topic I had to look at activity in the US where more facts and figures are available.
For those people who make regular claims that vaccines are safe, and that the autism link has been put to rest, I think you need to evaluate your scientific method.
Evidence should not be based on a single source, nor should it follow an extreme party line dogma.
You already know from John Gray that men are from Mars and women are from Venus, but do you know how to promote interplanetary cooperation at the office?
After decades of striving for gender equality in the workplace, you'd think the tough questions would be answered.
You would be wrong.
We are entering an era of renewal (or survival-depending on your point of view).
I prefer to be optimistic and begin a renewal process by asking the questions:
(i) What defines the business we are in?
(ii) What perspectives need updating/changing?
Pharmacy is on the cusp of changing its OTC mix, its dispensing emphasis and is upgrading its service offering to a clinical service for a fee.
Pharmacy’s core business has always been dispensing, augmented by specialised retailing (with some non-specialised component), plus a range of services (most unpaid, relying on specialty retail margins to fill the gaps).
Start-up private health aggregator and creator of a fast growing national dedicated pharmacy channel for private health cover, PharmaChoice, announces the appointment of Matt Henderson as our COO.
Mr Henderson was previously Group Channel Sales & Marketing Manager, Chief Operating Officer and Group Head of Corporate & International business, of NIB health funds over several years.
The theme for MM2013 is Get smart, Get personal, Get inspired
You will be INSPIRED by Dr Sam Prince, Chairman and founder of One Disease at a Time – a non-profit organisation that has a simple but groundbreaking vision to systematically target and eliminate one disease at a time.
Australia’s pharmacists have been urged to check their pay today to ensure they are getting paid the correct amount as part of National Check Your Pay Day.
Dr Geoff March, President of Australia’s union of pharmacists, Professional Pharmacists Australia, said many aspects of the award change on 1 July this year and the past has shown not all pharmacy owners keep up with the new legal rates of pay.
Pharmacists supporting pharmacists as close as your phone 1300 244 910
The Victorian based Pharmacists’ Support Service (PSS), an independent incorporated association supported by the pharmacy profession, has improved its ability to support pharmacists in Queensland with an expanded information base about contacts and services in that state.
PSS offers support to pharmacists who wish to talk to a colleague about any issue including workplace stresses, pharmacy practice matters, work or personal pressures, health issues including mental health concerns and drug and alcohol misuse. The PSS provides discreet and non-judgemental peer support. The pharmacists answering calls are all volunteers trained to provide support and counselling over the phone. The PSS will also link callers to other expert services when necessary. The service is available every day of the year from 8am to 11pm EST.
Some women who no longer have orgasms are being offered the chance to be part of a free drug trial which may help improve sexual function.
The international trial, with sites in the US, Canada and four sites in Australia – including Sydney – will determine if a testosterone gel can help boost female sexual arousal, appetite and satisfaction.
While testosterone has been used to treat sexual dysfunction in women previously, this is the first time that it is being administered through a nasal application.
The researchers believe this will be more convenient and minimize any chance of side-effects, which can include acne.
In the aftermath of global media reports relating to Pharma fraud on multiple levels, one of the levels identified for reform was the payments made to doctors by Big Pharma.
Medicines Australia, the organisation representing major drug manufacturers in Australia, was asked to amend its Code of Conduct by the ACCC to make doctor payments transparent.
Tax laws were changed so that a cap of $2,000 pa was determined as the maximum deduction for CPD allowed as a claim against income in an Annual Tax Return.
But this broad-brush was then applied for all education expenses for all occupations across the board, to individuals and organisations that were clearly not in receipt of Pharma monies.