s PSA Media Releases forJune 2009 | 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

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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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PSA Media Releases forJune 2009

Peter Waterman

articles by this author...

Keeping you up to date with PSA activities.

Information made available from the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia by Peter Waterman.
Peter Waterman is the Public Affairs Manager for the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia.
He may be contacted by telephone (02)62834782, or on mobile phone 0419 260 827

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2 May 2009
PSA WELCOMES ELECTRONIC HEALTH RECORD RECOMMENDATIONS

The release by the National Health and Hospitals Reform Commission of its report focussing on e-health and the introduction of a ‘person-controlled electronic health record’ has been welcomed by the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia.

The report recommends that by 2012 every Australian should have a personal electronic health record which that person will own and have full control over.

The Acting President of the PSA, Dr Shane Jackson, said the NHHRC report addressed concerns expressed about the National E-Health Strategy which proposed a 10-year time frame for the adoption of electronic health initiatives.

“The PSA has long maintained that the 10-year proposal as outlined in the E-Health Strategy was unrealistic and did not meet the best interests of the Australian public,” Dr Jackson said.

“It is refreshing to see the NHHRC moving to speed up the process of introducing electronic health records which PSA believes are an important step in the improving the ongoing health-care needs of all Australians.

“PSA welcomes the accelerated timetable proposed by the NHHRC. PSA supports the widespread and comprehensive use of electronic health records for recording the supply of medications and also supports the recommendation that all healthcare providers have an obligation to 'transmit’ key data, such as dispensed medications. Whilst we support that all healthcare providers transmit key data, it must be acknowledged that government needs to fund the infrastructure changes that need to be made for this to occur.”

The proposal would improve pharmacists’ ability to assist in the continuity of care for patients especially when transitioning between the hospital and community and vice-versa.

“Also, by pharmacists having access to the relevant diagnostic and pathology information, it places us in a much better position to detect and resolve any medication-related problems. The access to this diagnostic and pathology information will also greatly facilitate any future prescribing role for pharmacists and the ability of pharmacists to increase their role in Australia’s health-care system,” Dr Jackson said.

Dr Jackson said the report did not appear to propose that it be compulsory for patients to maintain an electronic health record.

“PSA, however, supports the introduction of processes that foster greater participation in any such system. We would urge an approach that encouraged opting out of the system, rather than opting in.”

Dr Jackson said the Government also needs to develop a strategy to inform consumers and health professionals about the significant benefits and safeguards of the proposed NHHRC approach.

“Such an awareness-raising strategy is an important step in ensuring the acceptance and efficacy of the new records system, which will be an essential pre-requisite to its success,” Dr Jackson said.

Dr Jackson said PSA would respond to other issues raised in the NHHRC report in the near future.

 

7 May 2009
LAWS RELATING TO CONTRACEPTIVE SALES IN NT RAISE CONCERNS

The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia today expressed concerns over laws in the Northern Territory requiring pharmacists to report sales of contraceptive items and possibly pregnancy tests to people under the age of 16.

Under the laws, which have been in place for some months but which the Government has only just ordered health workers to comply with, sexual activity among people under the age of 16 must be reported to a team that includes police and staff in the Northern Territory's Department of Health and Families.

The laws apply to any person under the age of 16 who is sexually active, regardless of the age of that person's sexual partner or if the activity is consensual.

Acting President of the PSA, Dr Shane Jackson, said the laws raised issues of public health and privacy.

“Our concern is that these laws could act as deterrent to young people seeking to act responsibly in relation to their sexual activities,” Dr Jackson said.

“The Government is clearly using underage sexual activity as a marker for sexual abuse and this is absolutely the wrong approach.

“There is little doubt the laws will have a negative social impact in that these people may not access appropriate measures for contraception and reduction of STDs for fear of being reported to the authorities.”

Dr Jackson said the Northern Territory had among the highest rate of sexually transmitted disease in Australia and any moves which might deter young people from using contraceptives were counter-productive.

“There is also the question of the laws forcing pharmacists and other health workers to break patient confidentiality or risk fines of up to $20,000,” Dr Jackson said.

“Patients put a very high value of the accessibility and confidentially of their visits to the pharmacist and these laws threaten to undermine one of the foundations on which this accessible and confidential health care is made available to all Australians.

“The PSA fully supports the Northern Territory’s commitment to reducing harm to children but feels this measure may in the long term create more problems than it seeks to address.

“The PSA has a wealth of expertise on hand and is more than happy to sit down with the NT Government to help amend the legislation to ensure it is workable and efficacious.”

 

12 May 2009
NATIONAL REGISTRATION AND ACCREDITATION PROPOSALS SUPPORTED

The announcement by the Australian Health Workforce Ministerial Council that it had agreed to a framework for a National Registration and Accreditation Scheme has been welcomed by the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia.

PSA President Warwick Plunkett said while some issues needed further examination and clarification, the Society broadly welcomed the thrust of the Council’s announcement.

“PSA strongly supports the recommendation by the Council that for annual renewal of registration, applicants must show they have participated in a continuing professional development program as approved by their national board,” Mr Plunkett said.

“The PSA also strongly supports the recommendation that external accrediting bodies will continue their very important role and remain independent of government and that national boards will be required to register students.”

Mr Plunkett also said PSA approved the proposal for a uniform approach across all States to have all pharmacists undergo professional development for re-registration.

However, Mr Plunkett said the PSA is concerned by the proposal that the national board would determine where State or Territory boards will be appointed.

“The PSA believes that it is essential that a State and Territory entity remain in each State and Territory,” Mr Plunkett said.

“The possibility that this may not occur is an additional reason why we believe a practitioner from each State and Territory must be included in the national board,” Mr Plunkett said.

Mr Plunkett said a key area in the report requiring clarification is the process for the development of professional standards.

“The operation of the scheme must continue to allow the PSA to retain its role in developing, and setting and maintaining standards for the pharmacy profession – primarily through its competency standards, professional practice standards and code of professional conduct.

“This accords with the National Health (Pharmaceutical Benefits) (Conditions of approval for approved pharmacists) Determination 2007 which states pharmacists must ‘comply with the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia’s Professional Practice Standards’,” Mr Plunkett said.

 

12 May 2009
FEDERAL BUDGET: PLUSES AND MINUSES

The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia tonight welcomed the $22 million in funding for the National Prescribing Service announced in the Federal Budget.

The President of the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia, Warwick Plunkett, said this funding will enhance quality use of medicines through improved prescribing and the PSA is keen to work with the NPS in this area.

Mr Plunkett said a number of the Budget moves are welcome, including the addition of two new medications on the PBS – Avastin and Sutent – and the continuation of funding for Herceptin, as well as other cancer initiatives.

“The Government has also provided funding for preventative health and health promotion activities,” he said.

“In addition, the Government has continued funding the National Return and Disposal of Unwanted Medicines program which is welcomed by the PSA.

“The PSA also welcomes the $1.5 billion in health infrastructure funding.”

But Mr Plunkett said the PSA is concerned the Budget is unfairly targeting the PBS to make additional savings by putting some medications in a new therapeutic group.

“This comes at a time when PBS reforms, calculated to save the Government more than $7 billion over seven years, are just starting to take effect,” Mr Plunkett said.

“It is premature of the Government to take this course of action before the reforms have been able to take hold and produce the expected results.”

Mr Plunkett said there needs to be clarification about some of the Budget’s announcements, including the workforce initiatives.

“The measures do not appear to include pharmacists who are the most accessible health-care professionals in Australia,” Mr Plunkett said.

 

13 May 2009
PREVENTATIVE HEALTH CARE FOCUS WELCOMED

The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) has welcomed the Federal Budget’s focus on preventative care and its moves to encourage multidisciplinary primary care teams.

Moreover, the PSA considers that these initiatives are consistent with the broader approach to preventative health care commendably demonstrated by the reviews commenced by the Rudd Government, including the Preventative Health Task Force, the Primary Health Care Strategy and the Health Reform Commission.

The President of the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia, Warwick Plunkett, said these initiatives are a positive step forward in the provision of primary health services across the nation.

“However, it is disappointing that the Government doesn’t yet grasp the key role that pharmacists can play in the primary care team as the most accessible health professionals,” Mr Plunkett said.

“The measures to expand the PBS and MBS for nurses are welcome but are only the first step towards genuinely improving the health of the community.”

Mr Plunkett said the role of pharmacists must also be utilised in the Government’s Budget commitment to preventative health programs, including tobacco, obesity and alcohol.

“The PSA’s Pharmacy Self Care program has a clear focus on preventative health and consumer self-care which should be utilised in any program the Government undertakes in the area of preventative health,” Mr Plunkett said.

“The Budget is unclear on exactly how the Government plans to develop the preventative health program and the PSA would like to see details of the proposals.

“The reason for such clarity is that the PSA Pharmacy Self Care program is an established program on preventative health and we would welcome the opportunity to assist the Government in the implementation of their initiative so that time, effort and public funding is not wasted in duplicating programs.

“Pharmacies are already the focal point of many preventative health programs dealing with a range of issues which include tobacco and obesity. We urge the Government to use the PSA Pharmacy Self Care program as a starting point in developing its proposals,” Mr Plunkett said.

 

 

 

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