Welcome to the First Edition of Gorilla’s Regular Pharmacy News Updates!
We know you’re time-poor, so we decided to make looking for the latest pharmacy news a little easier.
Here are some of the more useful and interesting Australian pharmacy news developments from the past few weeks.
NBN Offer for Pharmacies
Following successful lobbying by the Pharmacy Guild, the Federal Government has agreed to offer free upgrades to high-speed NBN for community pharmacies for the next 2-3 months. This comes on the back of increased telehealth provision, leading to the need for a boosted NBN service.
To apply for the offer:
- You must be using a residential 12/1 Mbps or 25/5Mbps package;
- Your NBN Retail Service Provider (RSP) must be one of the 24 RSPs who have agreed to the package
If eligible, contact your RSP today.
Check Your Cyber Security
While offers like the NBN offer are clearly a boon for pharmacies, as is the increase in telehealth capacity, increased use of digital tech comes with risk.
This important pharmacy news has come to the attention of the profession from the Australian Digital Health Agency (ADHA) through a recent Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) webinar.
Ben Wilkin’s, the ADHA’s Clinical Reference Lead led the webinar, telling watchers of the massive rise in cyber attacks and crypto locking during COVID-19, which has been happening around every 14 seconds.
The ADHA offers an eLearning course to help prepare any health professional currency using tech more often to meet patient needs.
New Doctor of Pharmacy in the Pipeworks
For pharmacists looking at further upgrading their qualifications, a new Doctor of Pharmacy is now looking a live option.
Pointing to a new clause in the Seventh Community Pharmacy Agreement (7CPA), Professor Peter Little of the Council of Pharmacy School of Australia and New Zealand sees this inclusion as a path forward to a PhD for pharmacists.
While it may still be some time off, with three Australian schools of pharmacy or pharmaceutical science in the world top 20, Professor Little sees this development as the opportunity for ensuring better reciprocity of movement between countries of pharmacists and opening up Australia more to international students interested in the profession.
Queensland PGA Head Pushes Back on AMA Queensland
In Queensland pharmacy news, a war of words has broken out between the Pharmacy Guild Australia, Queensland branch president Professor Trent Twomey and the Australia Medical Association Queensland (AMAQ).
The issue revolves around “The Urinary Tract Infection Pharmacy Pilot - Queensland” which Professor Twomey sees as an advancement in supporting a modern, efficient and patient-centric healthcare system but which the AMAQ is pushing back on.
Citing other countries such as the UK and New Zealand which have for years had such a programme in place, Twomey called on the AMAQ to stop the scare campaign, saying “The pilot supports patient referrals to GPs, if needed, to ensure continuity of care, where a complex Urinary Tract Infection is identified...As primary healthcare professionals, we need to work together for the community, not against each other.”
New dates for APP2021 announced – 20-23 May 2021
The PGA has announced the dates for the 2021 Australian Pharmacy Professional Conference (APP).
After having to postpone the 2020 conference indefinitely due to COVID-19, advanced planning for the 2021 conference has begun to give the profession the opportunity to begin early planning for next year.
APP Chairman Kos Sclavos AM has assured all potential attendees that the organising committee will have a COVIDSafe Plan front and centre in all their planning as attendee safety was of the utmost important
However, even with this in place, he still looked forward to APP202, “when as an industry we can come together to reflect on the last 12-18 months and build strategies and solutions to help the pharmacy industry recover and build resilience for the future”.
Sign up for alerts and updates about APP2021 here.