Publication Date 30/04/2012         Volume. 4 No. 4   
Information to Pharmacists


From the desk of the editor

Welcome to the May 2012 homepage edition of i2P-Information to Pharmacists. Rollo Manning has been having some time out having staples removed from the site of his open heart surgery.He is now at home recuperating in Darwin, having arrived home last Friday, beating a cold and hasty retreat from Canberra.We all wish him a speedy recovery and hopefully, he will be fit enough to contribute by next month.
This month, Pharmedia discusses the toll that is taken when someone complains about you to an authority without good cause. Well, the good news is that you can now take action to protect yourself if such a complaint is made, and that may even include action for defamation. Read about a recent case involving two doctors, with Mark Coleman drawing on personal experience to illustrate.

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Tax time – a donation to PSS is a gift to your profession and a deduction for you

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

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Kay Dunkley is a pharmacist who has worked in hospital and organisational pharmacy for over 20 years.  She has a broad experience working in public hospitals and in providing support to health professionals through government funded bodies and professional organisations.  Kay also has a strong interest in the health and well being of health professionals and especially the role of peer support.  Kay first became involved as a volunteer with the Pharmacists’ Support Service, a group which has been providing telephone support for pharmacists in Victoria since 1995.  In 2005 Kay became the Program Coordinator for the Pharmacists’ Support Service and has assisted the service to become an independent organisation which is currently seeking to expand to provide support to pharmacists throughout Australia.  In 2007, when AMA Victoria approached the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (Victorian Branch) with a view to establishing their own Peer Support Service; Kay accepted an invitation to assist.  The AMA Victoria Peer Support Service commenced operation in February 2008.  Kay currently coordinates both of these services and also works part-time as a consultant pharmacist in Residential Care Facilities.

As the end of the financial year approaches the Pharmacists’ Support Service (PSS) invites all Australian pharmacists to consider making a tax deductible donation to support the work of PSS.
PSS is an independent incorporated association and relies on the generosity of the profession to continue its work.
The service, which is based in Victoria, has expanded to Tasmania, South Australia and Northern Territory over recent years and now has the rest of Australia in its sights.
PSS is planning to establish a website for all Australian pharmacists and also develop resources and support networks in NSW, ACT, Queensland and Western Australia when sufficient funding becomes available.

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According to Natalie Collard, Vice President of PSS, “Several pharmacy organisations make significant financial contributions to PSS and are our main source of income, but to expand and develop the service we need funding from the broader profession. PSS provides a listening ear and support to any pharmacist, pharmacy student or intern wishing to call on the toll-free number. All members of the pharmacy profession should support this service.”

The PSS telephone is answered by pharmacist volunteers who have undertaken training in crisis counselling. Anonymous and discreet support is available on 1300 244 910 between 8.00 am and 11.00 pm (EST) every day of the year. Natalie also recommends “All pharmacists should take a moment to put the PSS phone number into your phone’s contact list as you never know when you may need it.”

The main PSS expenses are telephone costs, ongoing training for all volunteers, insurance and administration including a part-time staff member. To expand PSS needs to develop its infrastructure to ensure that the volunteers are well supported and the service is sustainable.

Anyone wishing to support the work of PSS can send their donation to the Pharmacists’ Support Service c/o 381 Royal Pde, Parkville 3052. Donations can also be made over the phone using a credit card through the PSA (Victorian Branch) office on (03) 9389 4000 or by direct deposit into the Pharmacists’ Support Service bank account BSB 083155 and account number 481820199 (include name and contact details so that a receipt can be issued).

PSS is an independent incorporated association which receives funding and support from the following organisations which are all represented on the PSS Management Committee:

* Australian Friendly Societies Pharmacies Association

* Pharmaceutical Defence Ltd

* Pharmaceutical Society of Australia

* Pharmaceutical Society of Victoria Ltd

* Pharmacists’ Division of APESMA

* Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Australia. 

Kay Dunkley, PSS Program Co-ordinator, 0407 755 598.

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