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Publication Date 01/06/2013         Volume. 5 No. 5   
Information to Pharmacists

Editorial

From the desk of the editor

Welcome to the June homepage edition for i2P (Information to Pharmacists) E-Magazine.
The editor’s desk has been vacant for nearly a month to enable a short vacation to happen, and gratefully it has stirred some sort of a revival.
The volume of work unpublished over May will be reorganised and will appear gradually over future editions.
Since resuming “the desk” the pressure has recommenced, but that is part of the job.
This month we have featured Gerald Quigley as he illustrates an evidence-based complementary medicine that helps Alzheimer patients. The product is already helping patients but is being criticised because of a perceived lack of “quality” in its evidence profile.
Mark Coleman has jumped in to point out the lack of quality in mainstream evidence for drugs, and I find it quite appalling that a serial complainer can justify any mainstream evidence as being “gold standard”.
Read Mark’s article under the title of “Research and other Medical Wonders”.

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Recent Comments

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News Flash

Newsflash Updates for June 2013

Newsflash Updates

Regular weekly updates that supplement the regular monthly homepage edition of i2P. 
Access and click on the title links that are illustrated.

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Feature Contribution

What about the Alzheimer’s patient?

Gerald Quigley

There’s a new product available in Australia for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease.
No doubt you have heard of it because it represents a new option for those affected by this insidious condition.
After all, we don’t have a successful treatment, and many families tell me that their loved ones are being taken off their prescribed medicines because of the range of adverse effects.
I get that message from geriatricians as well.

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Sartoretto Verna Opens in Malta

Fiona Sartoretto Verna AIAPP

Sartoretto Verna opens a new pharmacy in Malta, one of the most beautiful islands of the Mediterranean.
The young and fresh atmosphere suits the resort town of Qawra perfectly.
An environment full of light, bright colors and an elegant modern design make a unique pharmacy, which appeals to tourists and locals alike.

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The foundations are more important than the facade

Anthony Huxley & Peter Krasenstein

One of the key truths that we’ve been focused on in developing the pharmacy innovation that is PharmaChoice, is the simple fact that Pharmacy is the second most trusted profession on Earth.
Just in case you’re wondering, interestingly enough, Nurses are the first (and good on them).
In the first of this series of articles last month we made comment about how, pharmacy, should be metaphorically renovating the house while we’re all at it doing extensions. More to the point, maybe it’s smarter to renovate before you extend.

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Research and Other Medical Wonders

Mark Coleman

Editor's Note: The debate on evidence-based medicine heats up, yet it does not seem to be based on "evidence".
Increasingly, it gets down to a total criticism of alternate medicine supposedly having no evidence as opposed to mainstream medicine holding the only evidence.
But it is increasingly being found that mainstream evidence is no evidence at all because of the level of fraud, falsification, misrepresentation and downright lies it contains.
It is simply one big lie and may never be fully corrected in my lifetime.
On that basis, organisations like the Friends of Science in Medicine carry out terrorist attacks on soft targets to try and score points. It does them no credit.
Who commissioned them to do that and why do they do it so selectively?

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Do We Want To Be Healthcare Professionals Or Grocers?

Dr John Dunlop (PGDipPharm, MPharm, DPharm(Auck), FACPP, FNZCP, FPSNZ, MCAPA)

Gregory Haines, in his introduction to his book ‘Pharmacy in Australia’ puts dispensing pharmacist’s plight quite succinctly:
“As dispensers, pharmacists were simply the fulfillers of another’s orders.
No matter what technical expertise they brought to their work, they had no scope for initiative.”
Haines was referring to the early part of this century when the pharmacist was a highly respected professional.
He ( and then it was almost exclusively a male dominated occupation) practised an art steeped in the mystery of manufacturing the mixtures, emulsions, pills cachets, naristillae, unguents etc, comprising altogether over 70 different and now essentially historic, presentations.
Those pharmacists played no small part in selecting and providing medicines to patients who consulted them for minor, and with the hind sight of today's knowledge sometimes not so minor ailments.
Some pharmacists developed substantial reputations as health carers and health providers.

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The Call For Unity

Neil Johnston

Calls for unity among special interest groups are not uncommon because there is political strength in a unity of purpose.
Of course the group needs to feel under threat to create the “glue” that will generate adhesion for that group.
The surprise (or not) on this occasion is that it is the PGA currently calling for unity after more than a decade of disruptive and divisive activity, culminating in disunity among most of the pharmacy groups.

Comments: 1

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The pharmacy landscape is changing according to Mark Hooper – and Bob Dylan

Neil Retallick

Recently, Mark Hooper was talking about his customer base. His view is that the community landscape will change significantly over the next period, with amalgamations, consolidations and the like. There will not be a sustainable position for mid-sized pharmacy groups – too much invested in infrastructure and too little gross profit at the end of the day. All of these observations were made in the context of a discussion about the future of the Harrisons pharmacies given their recent demise. Bob Dylan was prescient – the times they certainly are a’changing. Or was he just stating the obvious.

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Employing Countervailing Forces

Barry Urquhart

Greetings from Broome, in the Kimberley region of Western Australia. This iconic destination of pearls, 80-mile beaches, camel rides, dinosaur footprints and sun is facing its own challenges.
A recent decision by a mining corporation to process its gas production on an off-shore floating platform will have a huge impact on the broader economy and populace of the community.
We are visiting Broome to deliver keynote presentations of “Future-Proof Your Business,” sponsored by the Red Wave FM radio network, the Small Business Development Corporation and the local Small Business Centre. Tomorrow we fly to Karratha.

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The One Reason Why You Can't Ignore Social Media

Chris Foster

Many business owners believe they have a choice as to whether they include social media as part of their marketing initiatives.
However, this is a mistake.
You see you can't treat social media like traditional marketing channels.
Why?
Well with traditional marketing, you as the business owner push out the marketing message via radio, paper, television, email, catalogues, brochures etc in the hope that customers, both old and new, hear your message and act.
The marketing message goes one way, with no interaction with the customer until they visit your premises or website to purchase.

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How do you get better at your job?

Harvey Mackay

When I am hired to speak to a company or association, I typically talk ahead of time to six to eight people who will be in the audience to get a better sense of the group.
I ask them a series of questions about creative selling, teamwork, negotiations, how they get close to their customers and so on.
Then I surprise them and ask what they do to get better at their jobs?

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Finding Things Whether We Need Them......Or Not

Mark Neuenschwander

I’ve been thinking about how we find things when we need them. Or not.
In my thirties and forties, I had a recurring dream.
Instead of selling my first six cars, I put them in storage.
Far from being “rode hard and put away wet,” each was in pretty to very good condition: The ‘49 VW, the ‘50, ‘51, ‘53, and ‘56 Chevys, and the ‘55 Ford wagon (think Ozzie and Harriet).
Actually, it was a recurring nightmare, as I spent what seemed the better part of my sleep trying to recall in whose garage each was stored. If I ever remember, I will sell the beauties and retire.

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R U OK

Kay Dunkley - BPharm, Grad Dip Hosp Pharm, Grad Dip Health Admin, MPS, MSHPA

In the last six months two young intern pharmacists in Victoria have committed suicide. 
Apart from both being male they have different stories and backgrounds, however both struggled with their lives to an extent that suicide was their preferred option. 
One was close to registration and was described as a “model intern”. 
The other had just started his intern year at a local pharmacy. 
Both had families, friends and colleagues who will have been significantly impacted by the death of these young men. 
Sudden death and particularly suicide leaves many unanswered questions. 
Frequently family and friends find it difficult to understand why a loved one would choose death. 
They also often have a feeling of guilt and in particular regret that they didn’t see it coming and were not able to stop it happening.

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"Health food stores" – or are they?

Loretta Marron OAM BSc

My local health food store sells some interesting foods, so when I go there I usually look around to see what’s on offer and what ‘health’ claims they make for their products.
I look at both the product labelling and the in-store advertising.
With a wide range of claimed therapeutic effects and no medicos or pharmacists on staff, can we really trust their advice?

Comments: 1

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Four Disrupting Activities Arriving for Pharmacy

Steve Jenkin

Healthcare costs are looming as the big issue for 2013, and with a possible change of government occurring in September this year, the scalpel will be used incisively to cut back on all costs, irrespective of what was originally promised.
Pharmacy is quite commonly caught up in these types of processes because it is involved in around $15 billion expenditure annually on PBS drugs.
In a national government budget, pharmacy expenditure stands out like a sore toe.
In total, there are at least four major disruptions that are likely to impact on pharmacy, commencing in 2013.

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The new face of buying and selling

Harvey Mackay

The only constant in life is change. And the sales game is certainly doing its share of changing.
One of the biggest shifts seems to be in the buyer/seller relationship. Research shows that buyers are not reaching out to contact salespeople and sales organizations until they're 60-70 percent along in the decision process, according to Jill Konrath, an internationally recognized sales strategist.

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NSW PGA Loses its way

Staff Writer

Si Banks is the NSW state president of the Pharmacy Guild of Australia and within the last week he has created an outburst and caused division among NSW pharmacists and their respective groups, to such an extent that most are wondering what planet he is from.
In an increasingly isolated world, the PGA seems to be rudderless.
At a time we are all supposed to be working collaboratively with other health professions we are seen not to be able to collaborate as pharmacists-one to the other.

Comments: 2

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Vaccination Warfare - With Already High Rates What is the Issue?

Neil Johnston

Warfare has escalated between anti-vaccination groups and GP’s, as a significant number of doctors are refusing to sign forms to enable people to collect government tax benefits while their children remain unvaccinated.
In NSW it is a legal requirement for a parent to have a GP signature on a “vaccine-refuser” form before their children can be enrolled in childcare establishments.
Doctors are claiming that their patients are adopting bullying tactics while patients are claiming that doctors are showing disrespect towards their conscientious objection, and that they will report non-cooperating doctors to the relevant authorities.

Comments: 3

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EBSCOhost – a new benefit for SHPA members

Staff Writer

SHPA members now have access to EBSCOhost a powerful online reference system which offers a variety of proprietary full text databases and popular databases from leading information providers.

The EBSCOhost package provides access to:

DynaMed

MEDLINE Complete

CINAHL Complete

Health Business Elite

Health Policy Reference Centre

https://postoffice.tpg.com.au/advanced/postoffice/view.php?thismailbox=INBOX&index=116303&id=3&actionID=113&mime=00e1714e5fbd104a0b0afc13df4e59a9

which includes access to more than 3000 full-text journals, and so much more as part of SHPA membership.

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SHPA adds eminent pharmacists to the history books

Staff Writer

SHPA is celebrating its long and rich history by adding some of its members to the history books.
Over the last few weeks SHPA volunteers have written biographies of award-winning pharmacists as part of SHPA’s Pharmacy History Week and are now part of Wikipedia.
Some of the subjects so far are:

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Respected pharmacy managers resign over their concerns for patient safety

Staff Writer

Editor's Note: I have had first-hand experience as to what Anne is experiencing.
The non clinical people have full control over budget costs and will use unscrupulous means just to present a balance sheet that reflects favourably on administration.
The destruction this occasions human resources in the form of skilled pharmacists is unconscionable.


SHPA is disappointed and saddened to hear that respected pharmacists Anne Leversha and Lyn Billington have resigned as pharmacy managers from the Latrobe Regional Hospital in Victoria due to their concerns over patient safety at the hospital.
SHPA understands that after 27 years at the hospital (11 as pharmacy manager) Anne has found her position untenable because the hospital’s current senior executive is placing financial objectives ahead of patient safety.  We understand that Anne has come to this conclusion as:

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Australian Pharmacists Welcome Removal of the Profession from Skilled Occupation Lists

Professional Pharmacists Australia Spokesperson

Australia’s union of pharmacists, Professional Pharmacists Australia, today strongly welcomed the announcement that the pharmacist profession will be removed from the Skilled Occupation List, which allows immigrants with particular skills and qualifications to move to Australia.

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Australian Pharmacists Say Small Increase In Pay Not Enough

Professional Pharmacists Australia Spokesperson

Australia’s pharmacists today said the 2.6 per cent increase in award wages announced by Fair Work Australia yesterday was not enough and did not fairly remunerate pharmacists for their complex and important roles in Australia’s healthcare system.

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eBay Inc. and Kate Spade Saturday Partner For Interactive Storefronts

Staff Writer

You don’t need a commerce expert to tell you how quickly the retail market is evolving and how technology is driving the future of shopping.
The evidence is all around us.
Consumers can buy what they want anytime, anywhere and, thanks to the ubiquity of mobile, consumer expectations about how they engage with physical retail environments have changed as well. Shopping is now a highly customized experience.
Want to order from a food truck and pay by swiping a credit card and “signing” with your finger? Done. Forgot your iPad charger and need one delivered to your office desk in an hour? No problem. As technology and commerce converge, we will continue to shape the future for a truly personalized shopping experience.

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To Defeat Bacteria, Researchers Think Like Bacteria

Staff Researcher

A new approach to treating antibiotic-resistant infections has been developed by University of Wollongong (UOW) and University of New South Wales’ (UNSW) researchers who have patented the new technology and entered into commercialisation discussions with two French pharmaceutical companies.
Antibiotics have saved countless lives and alleviated human suffering for more than seven decades but, as widely reported, their continued use has led to the emergence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria or ‘superbugs’ which pose a major threat to humankind.

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Splitting the sea: turning ocean water into hydrogen fuel

Staff Researcher

University of Wollongong (UOW) scientists have developed a novel way to turn sea water into hydrogen, for a sustainable and clean fuel source.
Using this method, as little as five litres of sea water per day would produce enough hydrogen to power an average-sized home and an electric car for one day.
The research team at UOW’s Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science (ACES) have developed a light-assisted catalyst that requires less energy input to activate water oxidation, which is the first step in splitting water to produce hydrogen fuel.

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Hearing loss clue uncovered

Staff Researcher

Researchers from the Department of Otolaryngology at the University of Melbourne and the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at Monash University have discovered how hearing loss in humans is caused by a certain genetic mutation.
A novel genetic mutation was first identified in 2010 as causing hearing loss in humans.
Researchers have now discovered that this mutation induces malfunction of an inhibitor of an enzyme commonly found in our body that destroys proteins.
Published today in the American Journal of Pathology, this inhibitor is known scientifically as SERPINB6.

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Tax time – a donation to PSS is a gift to your profession and a tax deduction for you

Kay Dunkley - BPharm, Grad Dip Hosp Pharm, Grad Dip Health Admin, MPS, MSHPA

As the end of the financial year approaches the Pharmacists’ Support Service (PSS) invites all Australian pharmacists to make a tax deductible donation to support the work of PSS.
According to Natalie Collard, Vice President of PSS, “PSS provides a listening ear and support to any pharmacist, pharmacy student or intern wishing to call on the toll-free number.
All members of the pharmacy profession should support this service. We have volunteers based in Melbourne who generously give their time to answer calls. Other pharmacists can support the service through a tax deductible donation.”

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Identifying Professional Services - Sexual Health -Chlamydia

Neil Johnston

Editor's Note: We noticed this media item recently, and given the surge in interest in clinical services, we decided to make a comment in Pharmedia.
It is refreshing to note momentum building for a clinical services model in pharmacy.
Hopefully, a balanced model for pharmacy core business (dispensing and advice) is now emerging because it is the skill component of pharmacy that is not easily duplicated in other environments.
Pharmedia will continue to report on activities that could be marketed as professional service opportunities and provide a better balance for a total pharmacy service mix.
We would appreciate any comments that could add value.

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