s Clinical and Consultant Pharmacy - Perspectives on Leadership and Branding | I2P: Information to Pharmacists - Archive
Publication Date 01/07/2014         Volume. 6 No. 6   
Information to Pharmacists

Editorial

From the desk of the editor

Welcome to the July 2014 homepage edition of i2P (Information to Pharmacists) E-Magazine.
At the commencement of 2014 i2P focused on the need for the entire profession of pharmacy and its associated industry supports to undergo a renewal and regeneration.
We are now half-way through this year and it is quite apparent that pharmacy leaders do not yet have a cohesive and clear sense of direction.
Maybe the new initiative by Woolworths to deliver clinical service through young pharmacists and nurses may sharpen their focus.
If not, community pharmacy can look forward to losing a substantial and profitable market share of the clinical services market.
Who would you blame when that happens?
But I have to admit there is some effort, even though the results are but meagre.
In this edition of i2P we focus on the need for research about community pharmacy, the lack of activity from practicing pharmacists and when some research is delivered, a disconnect appears in its interpretation and implementation.

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News Flash

Newsflash Updates for July 2014

Newsflash Updates

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

Comments: 1

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Feature Contribution

Woolworths Pharmacy - Getting One Stage Closer

Neil Johnston

It started with “tablet” computers deployed on shelves inside the retailer Coles, specifically to provide information to consumers relating to pain management and the sale of strong analgesics.
This development was reported in i2P under the title Coles Pharmacy Expansion and the Arid PGA Landscape”
In that article we reported that qualified information was a missing link that had come out of Coles market research as the reason to why it had not succeeded in dominating the pain market.
Of course, Woolworths was working on the same problem at the same time and had come up with a better solution - real people with good information.

Comments: 5

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Intensive Exposition without crossing over with a supermarket

Fiona Sartoretto Verna AIAPP

Editor's Note: The understanding of a pharmacy's presentation through the research that goes into the design of fixtures and fittings that highlight displays, is a never-ending component of pharmacy marketing.
Over the past decade, Australian pharmacy shop presentations have fallen behind in standards of excellence.
It does not take rocket science - you just have to open your eyes.
Recently, our two major supermarkets, Woolworths and Coles, have entered into the field of drug and condition information provision - right into the heartland of Australian Pharmacy.

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The sure way to drive business away

Gerald Quigley

I attended the Pregnancy, Baby and Children’s Expo in Brisbane recently.
What an eye and ear opening event that was!
Young Mums, mature Mums, partners of all ages, grandparents and friends……...many asking about health issues and seeking reassurances that they were doing the right thing.

Comments: 1

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‘Marketing Based Medicine’ – how bad is it?

Baz Bardoe

It should be the scandal of the century.
It potentially affects the health of almost everyone.
Healthcare providers and consumers alike should be up in arms. But apart from coverage in a few credible news sources the problem of ‘Marketing Based Medicine,’ as psychiatrist Dr Peter Parry terms it, hasn’t as yet generated the kind of universal outrage one might expect.

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Community Pharmacy Research - Are You Involved?

Mark Coleman

Government funding is always scarce and restricted.
If you are ever going to be a recipient of government funds you will need to fortify any application with evidence.
From a government perspective, this minimises risk.
I must admit that while I see evidence of research projects being managed by the PGA, I rarely see community pharmacists individually and actively engaged in the type of research that would further their own aims and objectives (and survival).

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Organisational Amnesia and the Lack of a Curator Inhibits Cultural Progress

Neil Johnston

Most of us leave a tremendous impact on pharmacies we work for (as proprietors, managers, contractors or employees)—in ways we’re not even aware of.
But organisational memories are often all too short, and without a central way to record that impact and capture the knowledge and individual contributions, they become lost to time.
It is ironic that technology has provided us with phenomenal tools for communication and connection, but much of it has also sped up our work lives and made knowledge and memory at work much more ephemeral.

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Academics on the payroll: the advertising you don't see

Staff Writer

This article was first published in The Conversation and was written by Wendy Lipworth, University of Sydney and Ian Kerridge, University of Sydney
In the endless drive to get people’s attention, advertising is going ‘native’, creeping in to places formerly reserved for editorial content. In this Native Advertising series we find out what it looks like, if readers can tell the difference, and more importantly, whether they care.
i2P has republished the article as it supports our own independent and ongoing investigations on how drug companies are involved in marketing-based medicine rather than evidence-based medicine.

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I’ve been thinking about admitting wrong.

Mark Neuenschwander

Editor's Note: This is an early article by Mark Neuenschwander we have republished after the soul-searching surrounding a recent Australian dispensing error involving methotrexate.
Hmm. There’s more than one way you could take that, huh? Like Someday when I get around to it (I’m not sure) I may admit that I was wrong about something. Actually, I’ve been thinking about the concept of admitting wrong. So don’t get your hopes up. No juicy confessions this month except that I wish it were easier for me to admit when I have been wrong or made a mistake.
Brian Goldman, an ER physician from Toronto, is host of the award-winning White Coat, Black Art on CBC Radio and slated to deliver the keynote at The unSUMMIT for Bedside Barcoding in Anaheim this May. His TED lecture, entitled, “Doctors make mistakes. Can we talk about it?” had already been viewed by 386,072 others before I watched it last week.

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Dispensing errors – a ripple effect of damage

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

Most readers will be aware of recent publicity relating to dispensing errors and in particular to deaths caused by methotrexate being incorrectly packed in dose administration aids.
The Pharmacy Board of Australia (PBA), in its Communique of 13 June 2014, described a methotrexate packing error leading to the death of a patient and noted “extra vigilance is required to be exercised by pharmacists with these drugs”.
This same case was reported by A Current Affair (ACA) in its program on Friday 20 June
http://aca.ninemsn.com.au/article/8863098/prescription-drug-warning

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Take a vacation from your vocation

Harvey Mackay

Have you ever had one of those days when all you could think was, “Gosh, do I need a vacation.”
Of course you have – because all work and no play aren’t good for anyone.
A vacation doesn’t have to be two weeks on a tropical island, or even a long weekend at the beach. 
A vacation just means taking a break from your everyday activities. 
A change of pace. 
It doesn’t matter where.
Everyone needs a vacation to rejuvenate mentally and physically. 
But did you also know that you can help boost our economy by taking some days off? 
Call it your personal stimulus package.

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Explainer: what is peer review?

Staff Writer

This article was first published in the Conversation. It caught our eye because "peer review" it is one of the standards for evidence-based medicines that has also been corrupted by global pharma.
The article is republished by i2P as part of its ongoing investigation into scientific fraud and was writtenby Andre Spicer, City University London and Thomas Roulet, University of Oxford
We’ve all heard the phrase “peer review” as giving credence to research and scholarly papers, but what does it actually mean?
How does it work?
Peer review is one of the gold standards of science. It’s a process where scientists (“peers”) evaluate the quality of other scientists' work. By doing this, they aim to ensure the work is rigorous, coherent, uses past research and adds to what we already knew.
Most scientific journals, conferences and grant applications have some sort of peer review system. In most cases it is “double blind” peer review. This means evaluators do not know the author(s), and the author(s) do not know the identity of the evaluators.
The intention behind this system is to ensure evaluation is not biased.
The more prestigious the journal, conference, or grant, the more demanding will be the review process, and the more likely the rejection. This prestige is why these papers tend to be more read and more cited.

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Dentists from the dark side?

Loretta Marron OAM BSc

While dining out with an elderly friend, I noticed that he kept his false tooth plate in his shirt pocket. He had recently had seven amalgam-filled teeth removed, because he believed that their toxins were making him sick; but his new plate was uncomfortable. He had been treated by an 'holistic dentist'. Claiming to offer a "safe and healthier alternative" to conventional dentistry, are they committed to our overall health and wellbeing or are they promoting unjustified fear, unnecessarily extracting teeth and wasting our money?

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Planning for Profit in 2015 – Your key to Business Success

Chris Foster

We are now entering a new financial year and it’s a great time to reflect on last year and highlight those things that went well and those that may have impacted negatively in the pursuit of your goals.
It's also a great to spend some time re-evaluating your personal and business short, medium and long term goals in the light of events over the last year.
The achievement of your goals will in many cases be dependent on setting and aspiring to specific financial targets. It's important that recognise that many of your personal goals will require you to generate sufficient business profits to fund those aspirations

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ReWalk™ Personal Exoskeleton System Cleared by FDA for Home Use

Staff Writer

Exoskeleton leader ReWalk Robotics announced today that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has cleared the company’s ReWalk Personal System for use at home and in the community.
ReWalk is a wearable robotic exoskeleton that provides powered hip and knee motion to enable individuals with Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) to stand upright and walk.
ReWalk, the only exoskeleton with FDA clearance via clinical studies and extensive performance testing for personal use, is now available throughout the United States.

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Attracting and Retaining Great People

Barry Urquhart

Welcome to the new financial year in Australia.
For many in business the past year has been described as a challenging period.
Adjectives are a key feature of the English language.  In the business lexicon their use can be, and often is evocative and stimulate creative images.  But they can also contribute to inexact, emotional perceptions.
Throughout the financial pages of newspapers and business magazines adjectives abound.
References to “hot” money draw attention and comment.  The recent wave of funds from Chinese investors, keen to remove their wealth from the jurisdiction and control of government regulations is creating a potential property bubble in Australia.

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Updating Your Values - Extending Your Culture

Neil Johnston

Pharmacy culture is dormant.
Being comprised of values, unless each value is continually addressed, updated or deleted, entire organisations can stagnate (or entire professions such as the pharmacy profession).
Good values offer a strong sense of security, knowing that if you operate within the boundaries of your values, you will succeed in your endeavours.

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Evidence-based medicine is broken. Why we need data and technology to fix it

Staff Writer

The following article is reprinted from The Conversation and forms up part of our library collection on evidence-based medicines.
At i2P we also believe that the current model of evidence is so fractured it will never be able to be repaired.
All that can happen is that health professionals should independently test and verify through their own investigations what evidence exists to prescribe a medicine of any potency.
Health professionals that have patients (such as pharmacists) are ideally placed to observe and record the efficacy for medicines.
All else should confine their criticisms to their evidence of the actual evidence published.
If there are holes in it then share that evidence with the rest of the world.
Otherwise, do not be in such a hurry to criticise professions that have good experience and judgement to make a good choice on behalf of their patients, simply because good evidence has not caught up with reality.

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Laropiprant is the Bad One; Niacin is/was/will always be the Good One

Staff Writer

Orthomolecular Medicine News Service, July 25, 2014
Laropiprant is the Bad One; Niacin is/was/will always be the Good One
by W. Todd Penberthy, PhD

(OMNS July 25, 2014) Niacin has been used for over 60 years in tens of thousands of patients with tremendously favorable therapeutic benefit (Carlson 2005).
In the first-person NY Times best seller, "8 Weeks to a Cure for Cholesterol," the author describes his journey from being a walking heart attack time bomb to a becoming a healthy individual.
He hails high-dose niacin as the one treatment that did more to correct his poor lipid profile than any other (Kowalski 2001).

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Culture Drive & Pharmacy Renewal

Neil Johnston

Deep within all of us we have a core set of values and beliefs that create the standards of behaviour that we align with when we set a particular direction in life.
Directions may change many times over a lifetime, but with life experiences and maturity values may increase in number or gain greater depth.
All of this is embraced under one word – “culture”.
When a business is born it will only develop if it has a sound culture, and the values that comprise that culture are initially inherent in the business founder.
A sound business culture equates to a successful business and that success is often expressed in the term “goodwill” which can be eventually translated to a dollar value.

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ReWalk™ Personal Exoskeleton System Cleared by FDA for Home Use

Staff Writer

Exoskeleton leader ReWalk Robotics announced today that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has cleared the company’s ReWalk Personal System for use at home and in the community.
ReWalk is a wearable robotic exoskeleton that provides powered hip and knee motion to enable individuals with Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) to stand upright and walk.
ReWalk, the only exoskeleton with FDA clearance via clinical studies and extensive performance testing for personal use, is now available throughout the United States.

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Pharmacy 2014 - Pharmacy Management Conference

Neil Johnston

The brave new world of health and wellness is not the enemy of Pharmacy, it is its champion.
Australian futurist, Morris Miselowski, one of the world's leading business visionaries, will present the Opening Keynote address on Pharmacy's Future in the new Health and Wellness Landscape at 2.00pm on Wednesday July 30.
Morris believes the key to better health care could already be in your pocket, with doctors soon set to prescribe iPhone apps, instead of pills.
Technology will revolutionise the health industry - a paradigm shift from healthcare to personal wellness.
Health and wellness applications on smartphones are already big news, and are dramatically changing the way we manage our personal health and everyday wellness.

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Generation and Application of Community Pharmacy Research

Neil Johnston

Editor’s Note: We have had a number of articles in this issue relating to pharmacy research.
The PGA has conducted a number of research initiatives over the years, including one recently reported in Pharmacy News that resulted from an analysis of the QCPP Patient Questionnaire.
Pharmacy Guild president, George Tambassis, appears to have authored the article following, and there also appears to be a disconnect between the survey report and its target audience illustrated by one of the respondent comments published.
I have asked Mark Coleman to follow through, elaborate and comment:

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Clinical and Consultant Pharmacy - Perspectives on Leadership and Branding

Neil Johnston

articles by this author...

Neil Johnston is a pharmacist who trained as a management consultant. He was the first consultant to service the pharmacy profession and commenced practice as a full time consultant in 1972, specialising in community pharmacy management, pharmacy systems, preventive medicine and the marketing of professional services. He has owned, or part-owned a total of six pharmacies during his career, and for a decade spent time both as a clinical pharmacist and Chief Pharmacist in the public hospital system. He has been editor of i2P since 2000.

This article is about a great Australian leader, a product that has no apparent value, and a pharmacy cognitive service that has no apparent value.
It is also a story about how water has become a $multi-million industry and how pharmacy cognitive services are yet to flourish.
It is also a story about branding and how the water brand was built and is still building its value and influence.

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When I think about the word “adventurous” I immediately think about Dick Smith, the very patriotic and entrepreneurial promoter of the Australian food business.
He puts his money where his mouth is and will take on very long odds where his Australian investments are concerned.

He rails against the loss of Australian brands falling into foreign ownership and the constant drain of capital that leaves the Australian economy through the pathway created by these lost brands.

Dick Smith typifies certain values inherent in the Australian spirit – individualism, self reliance, decency, and a willingness to “give it a go” without thought of personal gain and will fight for what he believes is right.

I can align with his attitudes and values without difficulty.

Wouldn’t it be great if we had pharmacy leaders who would unselfishly lead their constituents in the manner of Dick Smith?

When writing this article I had in mind the mess that consultant pharmacy finds itself in, simply because of one segment of pharmacy (albeit a wealthy segment and a dominant one) has from the inception, actively destabilised and competed against the concept, starving it of funds and support, while at the same time dominating the development, training and direction of consultant pharmacists.
The result?
A confining of the product of consultancy to a monoculture of medication reviews – one that is unable to properly expand and diversify organically.

Any pharmacist (young or otherwise) reading this material should realise that the future lies very much in your own hands and to achieve your aspirations, you will have to strike out and go along an independent pathway, free of Pharmacy Guild influences.

Following on from that thinking I wondered how many pharmacists would have the imagination and maturity to solve this long-standing problem without mainstream pharmacy support.
Not that all community pharmacists are against consultant pharmacists, but many would be afraid to invest in a consultant health system because of the financial risk.
How then would you build value into a health consultancy to form up an attractive proposition that others would recognise and invest in?

Fortuitously, a new accreditation pharmacist group is forming up independently of the PGA.
Your support in the form of seed funding now and eventual membership later, would be a good investment in your future (Go to this link).
That gives you and any future consultant pharmacist the ability to share experiences and have representation in approaches to government.
Next, form yourself up into a corporate structure.
At this stage you only need one director (yourself) and one shareholder (also yourself).
Next, you need to compile a business plan with the most important segment being the marketing plan.
For this stage you will probably need professional advice and a free range list of your own ideas, plus any good ideas you have come across from friends, colleagues and others in other professions facing similar challenges.

Owning your own concepts requires a strong and dedicated personal commitment.
How do you start up a service business that has no current value, and one that has no diversified service product range, for stability and expansion?
Before designing your clinical program offerings, you must draw heavily on marketing skills and brand formation.

I noted an exercise in the food industry that has a parallel with this pharmacy concept.
It was done by Coca-Cola, a company I have little respect for except in brand building. They are a company that invests heavily in market research.
They can see the tide turning in respect of their flagship products that contain high levels of sugar and caffeine, which are all implicated in the obesity epidemic, flowing through to the diabetes 2 epidemic, as well as exacerbating other lifestyle illnesses e.g. heart disease.
Research told them that they needed a product that could not be criticised in respect of generation of health problems.
So what better acquisition than that of Mount Franklin mineral water?

But where is the value in selling water?
It is freely available wherever you turn.
Building value within the brand was an obvious first challenge.
Water sourcing is only from pristine sources (it is not tap water and it is filtered) and while there is fluoride naturally occurring in ‘Mount Franklin’ spring water, nothing is added to ‘Mount Franklin’ water.
A 2011 full analysis results for fluoride had a result of <0.1 mg/L.
PET bottles are used for packaging and are fully recyclable. Also, the bottles do not contain BPA, an out-gas from some plastics associated with cancer.

So that eliminates nearly all the health criticisms that are widely and properly levelled at products like “Coke”.
Mount Franklin even invokes medical authorities in their product information e.g. “For general day to day hydration, obtaining most of your fluid intake from water is recommended by the National Health and Medical Research Council’s Dietary Guidelines for Australians. Other drinks such as milk and tea, as well as some fruits and vegetables, can also help you reach your daily target of fluid intake.”

Like water, pharmacy counter prescribing is seen as having no retail value and merges into the background cacophony of retail goods and services
How then do we build value into pharmacy cognitive services through differentiation and branding, add value to the brand and all the services identified by that brand?
In other words, a Mount Franklin clinical pharmacy service that is promoted in a proper clinical space, for a fee.

Who would have thought that bottled water could be sold at all, let alone for a price of around $2.25 (which I believe is the current reimbursement for a clinical intervention).

Mount Franklin has diversified into a “lightly sparkling” version, flavoured with lemon essence or unflavoured – both versions are the original product carbonated.

But there’s more.
To build the brand value of the “lightly sparkling” new product, Mount Franklin has teamed up with Jennifer Hawkins (model, Myers ambassador and owner of the “Cozi” swimwear brand). The Cozi print designs have been imprinted on the “lightly sparkling” bottles that have now become collectibles and in the process have added value to the Mount Franklin brand with their new product being sold at higher prices as a result.

And the new product is gaining cult status with sales increasing exponentially.



 

Who could refuse to buy a refreshingly “natural” Mount Franklin sparkling mineral water with a Cozi design hinting at Jennifer Hawkins and her “girls”.

Mount Franklin is also a major supporter of The McGrath Foundation and in partnership helps to raise funds for breast care nurses.
They also support Mission Queensland Firebirds, a women’s netball team doing well in national and international championships.
No doubt they also wear Cozi designs on their uniforms and swim in Cozi bikinis.

Note that these are both activities built around women – the major consumer demographic.

These types of partnerships add value to and extend the recognition of Mount Franklin products.

So how do clinical pharmacists emulate this successful brand strategy?

There is one pharmacy group (Priceline) on a similar mission using the celebrity of Australian of the year, Ita Buttrose, who is now the face of Priceline promoting women’s health.
My view is that Priceline is a competitor with consultant pharmacists and sitting in the same space.
There is an ability to partner with them or actively compete against them.
That will depend on how quickly consultant pharmacists can diversify and come up to speed.
The PGA deserves universal condemnation for controlling and manipulating consultant pharmacy against their membership, and working in favour of major pharmacy groups (check out their personal affiliations).
They are certainly not deserving of the leadership role they try so hard to sustain by any method, including damaging and squandering scarce resources.

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