s Get Disruptive…not Disrupted | 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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Newsflash Updates for July 2014

Newsflash Updates

Regular weekly updates that supplement the regular monthly homepage edition of i2P. 
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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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Get Disruptive…not Disrupted

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.

Pharmacies are not the only forms of business with declining margins and feeling commercial pressures.
Nearly 75% of all Australian businesses are likewise feeling the pinch and are starting to believe they are entering into a freefall.
Ernst & Young recently conducted a global survey soliciting opinions from 285 senior executives and have formed the opinion that a “brand new order” of business has commenced.
“The brand new order is an environment of continuous, accelerating change and spiralling complexity.
It is transforming and disrupting the business landscape for consumer products and services companies and presenting them with huge opportunities and risks.”

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They believe that businesses are facing such a dramatic pace of change where the tried and tested ways of creating value are no longer valid.
In a sense this disruptive change is not new – only the rate of disruption.

There is no argument that the business model that pharmacists have tried to keep in place is now a failed model. It is time for the innovators to take control and rebuild a new fabric for pharmacy.
The miserable standards in pharmacy leadership are now so out of touch with the coalface, they should simply be disregarded and a new start planned to align with the “brand new order”.
The so called PBS Reforms have now started to bite and with a few creative “extras” (such as the recent filing of a generic atorvastatin price reduction of 25%) there is no doubt in my mind that the time has come to branch out in a different direction.
With barren leadership it is difficult, but not impossible, for those willing to plan and take risk.

The question is how?

And this question occupies the thoughts of most Australian businesses - pharmacies and all others combined. It will require courage to take a leap into the unknown, and that involves financial risk.
But to not be courageous involves an even greater financial risk as we now see pharmacists writing into pharmacy media advising the best way to go bankrupt. Hardly the sort of endorsement required to sustain the pharmacy profession.

According to Ernst & Young, winning in the brand new order will require more than just incremental improvements.
It will demand new ways of thinking and disruptive approaches.
Leaders will have to take value creation to the most granular level across their organisations in order to succeed.
They must reframe their strategic choices, choose where and how to compete, set a clear long-term vision and purpose and strike a careful balance between global and local activities (note that global opportunities do exist).
One way forward here has been clear and obvious for some time, and that is the direction of clinical services for a fee, irrespective of whether government reimbursement is available or not.
i2P has been quite vocal for nearly a decade in this area and still there is no clear business plan available from the PGA or the PSA – just “bits and pieces” planted with little translation or support through top down strategies, which are unlikely to create flourishing new services.
The problem here is that the entire delivery infrastructure of a pharmacy has to be redesigned, staff retrained and input sought as to the “what” and “how” of relevant services likely to succeed, which can be developed progressively.

Most importantly there must be a realignment of the value chain to harness social media to hold profitable conversations with consumers to develop a multi-channel strategy that is customized to the needs of the consumer and to maximise flexibility in the supply chain to create both efficiency and security of supply.
Let’s hope that Pfizer and other global manufacturers are reading this and are beginning to realise that unless they are in harmony with pharmacies, they will continue to lose goodwill and support at a rate faster than that of the past 12 months. Also, that they understand that their questionable marketing practices embracing falsified drug evidence and payments to doctors are no longer acceptable.

According to Ernst & Young, consumers now take hold of the conversation and demand greater value, and consumer products companies no longer “own” their brands.

“When consumers are seeking recommendations or advice  on what to buy, they  will turn  not to the producers of those goods but to third-party advisers, such as their  peers, social leaders or experts (including pharmacists) found on digital channels, such as Facebook or Twitter. Brands are now becoming a cloud of interactions that are shaped by consumer comments not just companies or partner organizations.

Without control over the conversation, business leaders must determine how to participate and engage with these third parties so that they can build and maintain trust among a fast-changing and demanding consumer base. Channels such as Facebook and Twitter are evolving at an incredibly rapid rate and will probably be joined or even overshadowed by new technologies in the next few years.
Companies must also understand the equivalent channels.
It’s important for companies to have a values-based message, but it’s also important for them to make money.
Telling stakeholders that you want to improve lives or reduce poverty around the world is great because it’s something that people can rally around, but you need to be able to execute on it properly.
You can’t have one without the other.”

There must also be a ruthless execution to capture value by creating strong alignment between strategic vision and the resources and capabilities required for implementation, maintain a focus on efficiency but prioritize value creation and empower talent to make the right decisions in a data-rich world.
No longer is there automatic acceptance of a medico-dominated health team and their policies of excluding (rather than embracing) all members of a health team.
Opportunities are available here in abundance, simply because medico management and vision is so minimal. Be courageous.

Consumer products companies that fail to respond to the brand new order will leave significant value uncaptured.
This also means that such companies not partnering ethically with pharmacies operate with unnecessary risk.
They risk declining volumes and margins, and consumer irrelevance. This will lead to increasingly intense scrutiny from investors and analysts, who may start to question both their strategy and long-term viability.

In summary, Pharmacists operating in the brand new order must come to grips with:

* Uncompromising stakeholders in the pharmaceutical industry who present pharmacists with dilemmas.

* Consumers taking hold of the conversation and demanding greater value.
They have become more vocal in the types of services they want from pharmacists, but have not been answered in return. This risks a mass defection to alternate health providers and other allied health practitioners

* The need for an entirely revitalized approach to brand management.
There is a need for a true house brand (with your name as the trade name), and a range of Australian suppliers that deserve pharmacy support.
Only a handful of national brands are required.

* The need to maximize flexibility of supply to meet consumer and customer expectations.
This has always been important for pharmacies and their patients/customers and will continue to be an expanding requirement. This is diametrically opposed to major drug companies and wholesalers that wish to restrict supply channels to match their own business models (most covertly opposed to pharmacy).

* The requirements for a new style of leadership fit for a fast and constantly changing world.
Pharmacists have always been a bit isolationist and not really in touch with each other or other areas of the health industry, even business at large.
A more collaborative leadership and management structure is required, starting with a pharmacy conversion to a company structure and the build of specialist directors and managers within that environment.

The range of skills and experience through a single managing pharmacist is now insufficient to deliver and drive services and markets for pharmacy consumers.
The infrastructure is more or less available, so why not use it?

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Submitted by Dr David Arelette on Tue, 24/07/2012 - 11:16.

Doing better at doing the same will not work - it's time for a new model, well for those that will prosper - there is only 1 question - what best suits the customer - and being inside a supermarket is the answer - this can be done now as a partnership or later on their terms - foot traffic is the counter of demand potential - everyone has to purchase food, some of these folks have to purchase medicines, the overlap is the solution - economics is like gravity, eventually you have to give in to both of them.

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