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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TAKE MEDICINES - Seriously

Rollo Manning

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Rollo Manning has experienced pharmacy practice from all sectors of the industry – retail, administrative, policy and remote Aboriginal practice. He spent 10 years with Glaxo Australia and was the first Director of Public Relations at the Pharmacy Guild National Secretariat in Canberra.
He has also held the position of Pharmacy Policy Officer for Territory Health Services in Darwin.
Rollo is currently a Consultant working in his own practice with remote Aboriginal communities, in Northern Australia.

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  Rollo Manning: Pharmacy and PR Consultant to Aboriginal health organisations and communities.

In order for Aboriginal people to “take medicines seriously” the health centre they attend must also demonstrate that it takes the matter seriously. However with no pharmacists employed at any of the remote Aboriginal Health Services in remote Australia this task is left to doctors, nurses or Aboriginal Health Workers. The government then sits back and does nothing to aid the situation for it pays for the medicine supplies but not the dispensing fee of $6-42 per item dispensed. This is largely because it has been a “bulk supply” into the health centre from a retail pharmacy and only a handling fee of $2-79 is paid per item and the pharmacy sits back and taskes it not being required to do any more towards Quality Use of Medicine.

Every Australian has access to a pharmacist when they have their medicines dispensed unless they are a remote living Aboriginal person, who are unlikely to know what a pharmacist does in life.

This must change.

A recent poster at an International conference on “Quality Use of Medicine” encouraged participants to think about employing a pharmacist.

The poster called for the following to be done:

* Store medicines in clearly labelled containers that will allow easy selection of either the meds to be dispensed directly for the patient or for later packing into a Dose Administration Aid (DAA) — this avoids errors.

* Neat and clean shelving displays the medicine products for easy checking of stock when re-ordering.

* Install an electronic aid to record outgoing medicines with the use of a touch screen, scanner and label printer to record and label all supplies. The Mirrijini Dispense System (MDS) will record the health professional making the supply; the patient for whom the medicine is being dispensed; and, a summary of all supplies in a given period.

* The packing of medicines into DAAs provides a job for young Aboriginal people in a community.

* Select a DAA that suits the patients at your health centre and put in place the equipment needed to implement this measure.

Click on indigenous poster here

It is said the “a job is the best form of welfare”.

A pharmacy business in a remote community employing a pharmacist will ensure that correct training is given and work checked by a qualified person. With careful selection of staff and the opportunity given to progress to a Certificate Level 4 for Pharmacy Technician it will help the individual and the community.

If you are interested in being a part of this movement contact the author at

RWM Consultancy PO Box 98 Parap NT 0804 Australia or email at rollom@iinet.net.au  Telephone: 0411 049 872 or 61 8 8942 2101

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