s Part three - a Better Umbrealla Organisation | I2P: Information to Pharmacists - Archive
Publication Date 01/02/2013         Volume. 5 No. 1   
Information to Pharmacists

Editorial

From the desk of the editor

Well 2013 has certainly begun and I must admit it has been hard to get out of “holiday mode” and back into “pharmacy mode”.
This year is looking quite challenging as many issues left in abeyance in 2012 are bubbling over , so I don’t anticipate a restful year.
One important issue we will cover for some time yet is the quality of drug  evidence in the Australian setting, and to kick off the debate the feature article  “Sense About Science”describes what is happening in the UK to help tidy up science in that country.
Comparisons have been made with the Australian experience and it seems that we have a long way to go before it can be regarded as “tidy”,

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Recent Comments

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News Flash

Newsflash Updates for February 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

Sense About Science – or Up To Your Ankles in Waste Water

Neil Johnston

My recent holiday reading included catching up on subjects that have slipped off my radar, mainly because the issues themselves have adopted a lower profile.
Then an article in the 6Minutes e-publication caught my eye.
It concerned a UK initiative by a group called Sense About Science”, that has started a campaign to have all clinical trials registered and have the results published, while simultaneously urging the patients to boycott trials if the researchers cannot guarantee the findings will be made public.
They have published a petition (found at www.alltrials.net) and are encouraging people to sign it.
The petition has the support and backing of the BMJ, the James Lind Alliance and Ben Goldacre (author of Bad Pharma) and is designed to put pressure on researchers, pharmaceutical companies and institutions who are in a position to bury research data that may reflect on reputations and drug company profits.

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Face of Priceline - Australian of the Year 2013

Peter Sayers

Few would not recognise Ita Buttrose, an iconic Australian well-deserved of the Australian of the Year Award for 2013. The award was presented in Canberra on Australia Day (January 26 2013), by PM Julia Gillard.
And there must be a lot of backslapping going on in the Priceline camp for their recent signing of her to front for their 200 member pharmacy franchise.
Ita’s profile was already stellar, but with the added impetus of the Australian of the Year Award, the Priceline brand will now increase in value considerably.

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Determining needs and wants…

Joseph Conway

In pharmacy media commentary, I often come across the idea that we need to give people advice on what they need as opposed to what they want. This is understandable given that we have specialist knowledge on medication therapy and live our lives discussing health issues with patients and dispensing their medication. We get to know very intimate details about people and many pharmacists working in community pharmacy get to follow people as they grow older and are a tiny (but important) part of their lives sharing their health issues over ongoing chats at the dispensary counter if they choose to shop at our store.

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Is the ‘weekend’ an anachronism whose usefulness and relevance has passed?

Neil Retallick

When I taught Sunday School, which seems to be about a hundred years ago but was only about forty, we learned from the Bible that on the seventh day, God rested.
After all, he had been busy for six days.
I do not wish to belittle anybody’s religious beliefs in these comments but use them to focus attention on just how much our society has changed.
At the same time I was teaching Sunday School, the shops all closed at mid-day on Saturday and at 5.30pm during the week.
A trip into town to shop on the weekend meant getting up bright and early on Saturday morning and being at the bus stop by 8.30am at the latest.

Comments: 1

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Fitting Your Pharmacy for the Future - Funding & Depreciating for Best Tax Effect

Chris Foster

Editor's Note:
I2P will be developing a series on pharmacy designs - ideas and concepts in respect of clinical services spaces.
In designing such spaces it was realised very early in the exercise, that to be properly integrated in an Australian pharmacy setting it could not be just an “add-on” but a whole of pharmacy redesign.
Similarly with the introduction of automated dispensing machines (original packs and dose administration aids) it is important to design workflows properly to capture efficiencies, and this also entails a “whole of pharmacy” redesign.
2013 may be the year of decision in terms of the type of pharmacy design to house your market offering. To survive you need to be different and there is not a lot to differentiate one pharmacy from the other, even if you belong to a marketing group.

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Ransomware - The New Kid on the Block

Steve Jenkin

Editor's Note:
Late in 2012, a medical practice on the Gold Coast of Queensland came under cyber attack in a unique way.
Instead of patient data being stolen, it was kidnapped in place, by encrypting all practice data so that it could not be read.
A key was then offered at a price so that the data could be opened.
Thus was born "Ransomware", and a a new threat had emerged.
i2P asked Steve Jenkin, our resident IT expert to give some insights to this new threat and what precautions we might all need, to eliminate this new approach to hacking.
If you need an incentive, just imagine if your PBS claim data was locked up for a week and your ability to generate a claim was locked up for six weeks, plus all attendant costs in restoring your data.
Would you survive in your business?
This reference article by Steve is important enough to use as a checklist for your IT provider or for your IT consultant to utilise in the next complete review of your entire system.
Steve's comments follow:

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Workplace Pressure in Pharmacy

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

The psychological definition of stress is a feeling of strain and pressure.  Small amounts of stress may be desired, beneficial, and even healthy.  Positive stress helps improve performance.  It also plays a factor in motivation, adaptation, and reaction to the environment.  Excessive amounts of stress may lead to many problems in the body that could be harmful.  Symptoms may include a sense of being overwhelmed, feelings of anxiety, overall irritability, insecurity, nervousness, social withdrawal, loss of appetite, depression, panic attacks, exhaustion, high or low blood pressure, skin eruptions or rashes, insomnia, lack of sexual desire (sexual dysfunction), migraine and gastrointestinal difficulties (constipation or diarrhoea).  It may also cause more serious conditions such as heart problems.

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Arm Yourself For The Battle For The Mind

Barry Urquhart

Social media, and the internet in general, are largely “blind” media.
They can be frustrating, time-wasting and inefficient.
Entries and enquires about wide-ranging but pertinent topics, products and services elicit countless responses, most of which are irrelevant and unappealing. Information overload abounds.Use of SEO's (Search Engine Optimisers) simply cluster companies, brand and service names, among large, often spuriously ranked groupings.Being on the shopping list has very little quantifiable and lasting value. Nor does the standing of being “first amongst equals”.
Establishing and sustaining unique, differentiated presences in the marketplace is difficult.
In the brave and new world of digital, mobile, on-line, multi or omni-channel reality, the importance, nature and value of effective branding is deepened and broadened.

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Positive thinking has no negatives

Harvey Mackay

One of life's great annoyances is the tendency of folks who ask you to perform an impossible task, list the issues they foresee and the problems that have plagued previous attempts -- and then admonish you to "think positive."
Wow! Does that mean you are so good that you can achieve what no one else has? Or are you being set up to fail?   
Because I am an eternal optimist, I prefer to believe the first premise. Positive thinking is more than just a tagline. It changes the way we behave. And I firmly believe that when I am positive, it not only makes me better, but it also makes those around me better. I think that good attitudes are contagious. I want to start an epidemic!

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Feasting on Fat

Loretta Marron OAM BSc

With the Christmas and New Year opportunities to over-indulge, it was easy for girths to increase a little.
If so, it might be very difficult to lose those extra kilos.
Many advertised products and services allegedly help us lose fat without diet and exercise.
Most will fail; some might even be dangerous.

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Hanukkah, Oxygen Masks and Christmas

Mark Neuenschwander

I've been thinking about Hanukkah, oxygen masks, and the Christmas presents I am duty bound to muster for my kids and grandkids. Thank God dad asked for pajamas.
Today I’m flying from Las Vegas to Seattle. About the only thing I liked about Sin City was the fountain show at Bellagio, the Elvis Christmas songs that popped up here and there, and a pretty good keynote address by Bill Clinton. Just thinking of shopping makes me wonder if the cabin isn’t losing its pressure.

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Antioxidants Prevent Cancer and Some May Even Cure It

Staff Writer

Orthomolecular Medicine News Service, January 24, 2013

Antioxidants Prevent Cancer and Some May Even Cure It

Commentary by Steve Hickey, PhD

(OMNS Jan 24, 2013) It is widely accepted that antioxidants in the diet and supplements are one of the most effective ways of preventing cancer. Nevertheless, Dr. James Watson has recently suggested that antioxidants cause cancer and interfere with its treatment. James Watson is among the most renowned of living scientists. His work, together with that of others (Rosalind Franklin, Raymond Gosling, Frances Crick, and Maurice Wilkins) led to the discovery of the DNA double helix in 1953. Although his recent statement on antioxidants is misleading, the mainstream media has picked it up, which may cause some confusion.

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HMR Moratorium – Killing Jobs in Pharmacy

Joseph Conway

It’s no secret that the Pharmacy Guild has called for a moratorium on HMRs until the alleged abuse of a tiny minority of Independent Pharmacists potentially rorting the system is investigated and the system is changed to reduce the possibility of such rorting.
They say that this is necessary as the budget for HMR’s has been overrun and any potential rorting could put the viability of future pharmacy-centric programs at risk too.
The Guild want payments stopped so that the business rules behind HMR’s are “tightened” to stop this apparent rorting.
If there is actually rorting going on, then I think that it’s in all pharmacists’ interest to “fix” this issue.
I for one have nothing against tightening the rules to stop pharmacists “Warehousing” HMRs?
This is great.

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Part one -HMR Evolution

Neil Johnston

With the furore created when the PGA went to print stating that the funds available for HMR’s were almost exhausted, it created an instant “blame game” and conjecture as to what really lay behind the belated PGA announcement.
I came to a conclusion early that it was a result of PGA mismanagement as the immediate problem, but also coupled with an underlying systemic flaw that was the major problem.
Between them they impact and threaten the long term development and survival of the consultant pharmacist program.
It has prompted me to create an analysis of some aspects of the program to evaluate what has gone wrong.

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Part two - Fixing the HMR Flaws

Neil Johnston

The PGA has succeeded in upsetting a broad spectrum of pharmacists that includes all accredited pharmacists, some employer pharmacists (with designs on creating a business model with professional services at the core), and employee pharmacists who see job opportunities being squandered.
It is obvious that the “engine room” for consultant pharmacists (The Australian Association of Consultant Pharmacy) needs urgent reform and a new focus, or be replaced completely.
And the PGA should stop its interference.

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Part three - a Better Umbrealla Organisation

Neil Johnston

Because a workable umbrella model for management consultants already exists, it is suggested that this model be adapted for consultant pharmacist use.
The existing umbrella model established for consultant pharmacists would need to be altered dramatically and be opened up to other organisations e.g Consumer Health Forum, APESMA)
Or an entirely new organisation could be developed from scratch.
This is, in fact happening and is unrelated to any of my activities.
However, I am suggesting that the umbrella model of organisation provided by the Institute of Management Consultants (Australia) provides an excellent reference to adapt to a consultant pharmacist version.

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Thought Bubbles From a Book Group Refugee

Gerald Quigley

Editor's Note:
One night recently, I received the following email from Gerald:
"My wife has a book-group here. I’m locked in my study and inspired to write!"
That's good news for an editor/publisher - getting copy in on time well in advance!
Then followed (the same night), three separate and disparate thoughts that were not directly concerned with a pharmaceutical issue.
But they all had application for pharmacy improvement, with a bit of applied creativity.
As these "thought bubbles" wafted in over the Internet I began to wonder how I might splice them together with some editorial ingenuity.
The following is the result.

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What Really Causes Kidney Stones (And Why Vitamin C Does Not)

Staff Writer

Orthomolecular Medicine News Service, February 11, 2013

What Really Causes Kidney Stones
(And Why Vitamin C Does Not)

(OMNS Feb 11, 2013) A recent widely-publicized study claimed that vitamin C supplements increased the risk of developing kidney stones by nearly a factor of two.[1] The study stated that the stones were most likely formed from calcium oxalate, which can be formed in the presence of vitamin C (ascorbate), but it did not analyze the kidney stones of participants. Instead, it relied on a different study of kidney stones where ascorbate was not tested. This type of poorly organized study does not help the medical profession or the public, but instead causes confusion.

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For health's sake, time to take on food giants

Staff Writer


Food Industry marketing practices are increasingly being brought under the spotlight as are various other worrying problems regarding additives to manufactured food products, also how food is grown using genetically modified seed and the range of toxic herbicides and pesticides.
These latter substances now pollute the entire food chain and not enough is being done to protect our food chain.
Many illnesses can be traced back to ingestion of unnatural substances over a long period of time.
It's time to grow your own.

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Consultant Pharmacists Should Lead The Way - But They Have No Leaders.

Mark Coleman

Isn’t it time that consultant pharmacists took control of their own direction and carved out a future?
Or is the current system of a single-product (HMR) service controlled by the PGA and the PSA, sufficient to provide an interesting and creative future?
How can the aspirations of consultant pharmacists be serviced by an organisation controlled by two major pharmacy-political bodies, when one of them (PGA) is directly working against consultant pharmacist interests.

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APESMA Campaigns for Pharmacist Lunch Hour Entitlements

Staff Writer

Australian pharmacists have been warned to carefully check exactly how much compensation they are getting for routinely working through lunch after an APESMA survey found 28 per cent of Australian pharmacists reported that they receive no financial compensation at all for the lack of a lunch break.
CEO of APESMA Chris Walton said working through every lunchtime was an unacceptable practice that could cause dangerous levels of fatigue.
APESMA has advised pharmacists who have signed any agreement to remove their lunch breaks to immediately ask their employer to itemise any compensation they are being paid in lieu of all award entitlements such as their lunch breaks.

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CHC Emphasises the Importance of Research

Staff Researcher

In light of a recent paper published in the Royal Society's Open Biology journal, proposing a theory that antioxidants can be detrimental in the late stages of cancer treatment, the Complementary Healthcare Council (CHC) of Australia emphasises the importance of clinical trials and studies into the prevention and treatment of cancer. Executive director of the CHC, Dr Wendy Morrow, highlighted this theory as being interesting and warranting more research.

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Advancing our understanding and treatment of motor impairment

Staff Researcher

NeuRA has secured significant funding to expand research into motor impairment, a problem that arises from many diseases and aging, and a growing public health challenge.
Everything the human body does requires movement, but our muscles—and our brain and nerves that control them—are often the first tissues attacked by a long list of disorders that includes stroke, spinal cord and brain injury, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, musculoskeletal injury and cerebral palsy.Prof Simon Gandevia is an expert in the brain’s control of human movement at NeuRA (Neuroscience Research Australia) and will spearhead the nearly $7 million multidisciplinary program of study, funded by the National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia.

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PSA WELCOMES GOVERNMENT’S HMR ANNOUNCEMENT

Peter Waterman

Media releases issued from the office of Tania Pliberseck and the PSA arrived this morning.
What follows is the PSA take on recent events surrounding HMR managent.

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Pharmedia - The Vaccine Poll Hijacked by Pharmacists?

Neil Johnston

Editor's Note:
Professional services development was stymied when the AMA reneged on an agreement to support pharmacist vaccination clinics.
It has caused anger and unprofessional behavior has evolved on both sides.
It also appears that while the professional bodies of the AMA and the PGA attempt to disrupt each other, patients at large will become the eventual losers.
The PGA is central to other clinical service disruptions, even those within pharmacy involving contractor pharmacists.
This is damaging to an orderly development of clinical services in a pharmacy setting and demonstrates that current leaders of the PGA and the AMA are not fit to claim the title of "leader".
We asked Mark Coleman to provide commentary on an article recently published in Australian Doctor.

Comments: 2

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Part three - a Better Umbrealla Organisation

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.

Because a workable umbrella model for management consultants already exists, it is suggested that this model be adapted for consultant pharmacist use.
The existing umbrella model established for consultant pharmacists would need to be altered dramatically and be opened up to other organisations e.g Consumer Health Forum, APESMA)
Or an entirely new organisation could be developed from scratch.
This is, in fact happening and is unrelated to any of my activities.
However, I am suggesting that the umbrella model of organisation provided by the Institute of Management Consultants (Australia) provides an excellent reference to adapt to a consultant pharmacist version.

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The following material has been copied from the site of the Institute of Management Consultants in Australia. To visit their site go to http://www.imc.org.au/html/s01_home/home.asp

“Management Consultants play a crucial role in the development of Australian organisations. 
By providing advice and assistance, consultants aid industry in determining and achieving their objectives.

The Institute of Management Consultants (IMC) is the professional body representing management consultants in Australia.  The Institute's mission is to represent and promote the management consulting profession, set and maintain internationally recognised standards and develop members.  Clients demand the utmost in professional competency and as a result seek out IMC management consultants.  For this reason, upon joining the Institute, members agree to abide by the Institute's Code of Professional Conduct.

To maintain a high standard of professional competency, the Institute provides regular professional development programs.

The Institute's vision is for the IMC to be recognised by all as the leading organisation representing and servicing the management consulting profession.  Members of the Institute participate in both National and Chapter activities.  IMC has Chapters in:

* the Australian Capital Territory,
* New South Wales,
* Queensland,
* South Australia,
* Tasmania,
* Victoria, and
* Western Australia.

The Institute is the awarding body of the Certified Management Consultant (CMC) designation.  CMC is the mark of competency for the management consulting profession and indicates that a management consultant meets certain requirements of character, education and experience.  The CMC designation is recognised internationally.  Institute members are part of an international network of professionals through the peak management consulting body - the International Council of Management Consulting Institutes (ICMCI).  There are more than thirty member Institutes of the ICMCI and membership of the Australian Institute allows reciprocity of benefits with each member country without the need for further assessment or examination.

My Comment:
(i) Note that the Institute is comprised of individual consultants,.
Corporate structures are allowed for groups of consultants.

(ii) Full membership is achieved after completing written and oral exams and post-nomials are set by the Institute.

(iii) Their view is global and reciprocal accreditation provides international opportunities for employment for all consultants. This alone could provide global work opportunities for Australian pharmacists in the 21st century and broaden the scope of educational opportunities and services development.

(iv) As management consultants play a crucial role in the development of Australian organisations, so should consultant pharmacists. The role of a consultant requires constant research, and as that happens pathways to a professional future are easier to visualise and plan.
Consultant pharmacists have the potential to create a practical lead for all of pharmacy in an advisory capacity.
Instead of deflecting proper development of consultant pharmacists, PGA should have a good look at their current leaders and have a purge of the non-performers.

Because the nature of consulting work is different to other types of employment, it is necessary to have a code of conduct and other statements about how consultancy services are to be provided.
Apart from holding a consultant legally liable for any breaches of code or statement, it instils a confidence factor for clients (patients) and alliance partners.

IMC Code of Ethics and Member’s Pledge 

Preamble

The Institute of Management Consultants Ltd (IMC) in Australia has adopted the following Code of Ethics, on 26th November 2008, as proof of the commitment of IMC Members to:

* Develop realistic and practical solutions to client problems
* Act in the clients best interests at all times,
* Render impartial, factually-based, independent advice,
* Accept only those client engagements they are qualified to perform,
* Behave with integrity and professionalism at all times,
* Agree with the client in advance on the basis for their professional fees,
* Safeguard confidential information

As the professional association and certifying body for management consultants in Australia, the Institute of Management Consultants (IMC) requires adherence to this Code of Ethics as a condition of membership and a prerequisite to certification.  All members have pledged in writing to abide by the Institute's Code of Ethics and their voluntary adherence to the Code signifies the self-discipline of the profession.

The Code sets out the principles of the ethical practice of management consulting. The purpose of this Code is to ensure IMC members maintain their professionalism and adhere to high ethical standards while providing services to clients; and also in their dealings with their colleagues and the public.

The individual judgement of member consultants is required to apply these principles and members may be liable to disciplinary action under the IMC rules if their conduct is found to:

* Be in violation of the Code, or
* Bring discredit to the profession or to the IMC.

The Disciplinary Committee of the Institute will investigate any such complaint and, amongst other options, may sanction or expel the member if a breach is confirmed.

IMC Australia Code of Ethics


1.It is the objective of each member, as a professional management consultant, to assist his or her clients to add value to the clients enterprise; whether that enterprise takes the form of a business, a not-for-profit organisation or any element of government.

2.A member will serve their clients with integrity, competence, objectivity, independence and professionalism.

3. A member will only accept assignments that the member is competent to perform; and, on a client project, will only assign staff or engage colleagues with knowledge and expertise relevant to the client project.

4.
Before accepting any engagement a member will establish with the client realistic expectations of the objectives, scope, expected benefits, work plan and fee structure of the assignment.

5. A member will agree in advance with the client on the basis for fees and expenses. A member will charge fees that are reasonable; commensurate with the services delivered, the value created and the risk or responsibility accepted.

6. A member recognises that the clients enterprise has many stakeholders whose interests are sometimes divergent, and will seek to balance and reconcile these different interests in their guidance to the client.

7. A members advice to the client will be delivered with independence and courage; always focussing on the long-term best interests of the enterprise as a whole, even when this guidance may lead to actions such as restructuring or retrenchments that may be painful in the short-term.

8. A member will continually invest in professional development to keep abreast of evolving knowledge within their profession and in areas of technical expertise.

9. A member will treat all confidential client information appropriately; will take reasonable steps to prevent access to confidential information by unauthorised people and will not take advantage of proprietary or privileged information, for use by the member or others, without the client's permission.

10. A member will avoid conflicts of interest, or the appearance of such, and will disclose to the client immediately any circumstances or interests that they believe may influence their judgment or objectivity.

11. A member will offer to withdraw from a consulting assignment when they believe their objectivity or integrity may be impaired. A member will represent the profession with integrity and professionalism in their relations with clients, colleagues and the general public.

12. A member will respect the rights of consulting colleagues and consulting firms and will not use their proprietary information or methodologies without permission.

13. A member will report to appropriate authorities within or external to the client organisation any occurrences of malfeasance, dangerous behaviour or illegal activities discovered during the course of an assignment.

14. A member will not accept commissions, remuneration, or other benefits from a third party in connection with any recommendations to a client without that client's prior knowledge and consent, and will disclose in advance any financial interests in goods or services that form part of such recommendations.

15. A member will refrain from inviting an employee of an active or inactive client to consider alternative employment without prior discussion with the client.

16. A member will not advertise their services in a deceptive manner nor misrepresent or denigrate individual consulting practitioners, consulting firms, or the consulting profession.

17. A member will promote adherence to the Code of Ethics by all other consultants working on their behalf.

18. A client, a member of the public or a member of the Institute may report any perceived violation of the Code of Ethics to the Institute of Management Consultants. In the event of such complaint a Disciplinary Committee will be convened to investigate and recommend appropriate actions, including but not limited to: mediation, arbitration or sanction against the member concerned.

Approved by IMC (Australia) Federal Council on 26th November 2008.

The IMC Consultant's Pledge

As a management consultant my professional objective is to assist my clients to add value to their enterprise, whether that enterprise takes the form of a business, a not-for-profit organisation or any element of government.

I pledge to uphold and promote the IMC Code of Ethics in all my consulting activities.

I will serve my clients with integrity, competence, objectivity, independence and professionalism. I will only accept assignments that I am competent to perform and, on a client project, will only assign staff or engage colleagues who have knowledge and expertise appropriate to that clients needs.

I will establish with my clients realistic expectations of the benefits and results of my services. Together we will define the scope and process of the assignment and the basis of remuneration.

I pledge that considerations of personal benefit will never over-ride my focus on the interests of the client or their stakeholders.

I promise to uphold both the letter and the spirit of laws, regulations and contracts governing my own conduct, that of my client and of the societies in which we both operate.

My personal behaviour will exemplify the values I publicly espouse in making this pledge. I will be equally vigilant in ensuring the professional behaviour of other consultants within my practice or the wider IMC membership and will bring to attention any violation of this shared professional code.

I will not permit considerations of race, gender, nationality, religion, politics, sexual orientation or social status to influence my professional behaviour or advice. I will be respectful of those whose wellbeing may be contingent on my decisions or advice.

I will diligently apply objective judgement to all consulting assignments, based on the best information available to me. I will conduct independent research and analysis where possible, and will consult with colleagues and others who can help inform my judgement.

I will continually invest in professional development to keep abreast of evolving knowledge within my profession and in my areas of technical expertise.

I recognise that my status and privileges as a professional stem from the respect and trust that the profession as a whole enjoys; and I accept my responsibility to employ, protect and develop the above standards to enhance that respect and trust.

I do so solemnly pledge.

Decentralised Infrastructure

It is suggested that the structure of any consultant pharmacist umbrella organisation
be decentralised along the lines of the original Division of General Practice for GP’s.
This enables local decision structure and development overseen by a central administration at a state level morphing into a national body for political representation.
It also provides a structure to help manage any other pharmacy service where conservation of financial resources is necessary. also where distances may create administrative difficulties.
Cooperation and collegiality should be the aspiration.
The following is one of my business model notes prepared at an earlier date for this type of development.

A chapter will be the smallest unit of the organisation and the chapter’s physical boundary will be represented by one or more adjacent postcodes.
It should have a minimum of three members.
Each chapter should appoint/elect a suitable convenor.

A division is comprised of two or more chapters representing a minimum of 15 members located within a hospital-designated region, or a general practice divisional region.
The chapter convenors should elect one of their number to be a divisional convenor, with all others filling roles of deputy convenors.

A state group is a collection of a minimum of three divisions within a state boundary.
It will elect its own executive from the pool of chapter convenors/deputy convenors.

A national group is a collection of all state groups, each allowed to appoint  up to three delegates from the convenor/deputy convenor pool.

Utilising a decentralised structure enables each division to organise its own development and educational activity, leaving formal or mandatory education organised at a state level.
Also, organisations that wish to access the consultant group can do so by planning a state-wide itinerary that can be quickly and efficiently delivered.

A division can also enter in to independent projects and apply for grant funds separately for whatever research project deemed suitable.

For this reason, management control of grant funds by the PGA for this activity would not be acceptable, because of conflict of interest potential.

And I will leave the discussion at that point because the debate has only just opened for the future of consultant pharmacists.
This area of pharmacy has the potential to concentrate the best pharmacist professional brains and provide a driver for real professional development and expansion.
It is both an exciting and intellectually stimulating activity and has the further potential to lift the status and morale of the entire profession.
The disciples of supermarket pharmacies who can only see the supermarket vision and no other need to forget about competing with consultant pharmacists and look for a way to accommodate their independent practices within the supermarket.
That would create a stimulus for the sale of many professional items and prescriptions - a perfect alliance and a point of difference to any other discount pharmacy not housing such a service.

We don't have time for in-fighting and wasting resources.

Contribute to areas of need right now:

(i) Consultant pharmacist development
(ii) Creating work for new graduates
(iii) Creating roles for senior pharmacists

Do it willingly and throw off the sometimes devious, negative and non-collegiate behaviors of the PGA.

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