Home' Australian Pharmacist : Australian Pharmacist January 2015 Contents Australian Pharmacist January 2015 I © Pharmaceutical Society of Australia Ltd.
and the achievement of effective
Will decreasing the service time enable the
pharmacist to uptake pharmacy asthma
services? We do not know the answer. None
of the ‘most likely’ cohort had successfully
implemented structured asthma services
post-trial. As well as the length of the
service, our participants were concerned
about remuneration for their time. Asthma
management services are not currently
subsidised by government or private health
funds. All respondents, however, expressed
willingness if the incentives to provide
services were changed to support providers,
and we feel this should be the next step.
The uptake of the recently introduced
and government remunerated Diabetes
MedsCheck service, which resulted from
the Diabetes Medication Assistance
Service (DMAS) trial33 evidence, may
allow further insight into a likely asthma
service uptake. A closer parallel may,
however, be the pharmacist home
medicines review (HMR) that requires
further specialist training and facilitates
independent consultant pharmacists.
Since implementation in 1998, HMRs
have successfully been incorporated
into regular practice with a structural
framework, GP referral and remuneration.
Given the financial and social burden
associated with patients who have
poorly-controlled asthma4 and that
the pharmacist, with the help of the
patient, is able to address key treatment
deficiencies using proven disease
management skills, wider translation
into practice would seem a sensible
approach. Pharmacy asthma services have
been demonstrated as cost effective.34
Furthermore, the public health benefits
of our expenditure on expensive
preventative asthma medications would
be further realised with the addition of
pharmacy asthma management services.
There is now a substantial body of evidence
that supports the benefits of pharmacist-
delivered, structured asthma services. What
is needed, however, is research exploring
organisational and systemic dimensions of
provider recognition, support and incentives
that can facilitate pharmacist-led asthma
management. Further research should
assess the structural changes required from
government, the professional bodies and
other healthcare practitioners to enable this
important initiative for the health of people
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Table 5. ‘Practice ready’ service patient interventions – patient visit 1 and 2.
Asthma service component Patients
Knowledge gaps identified
Trigger factors identified/
Written Action Plan template
Inhaler technique optimisation 10
Medication issues identified/
Spirometry performed and
Referrals to physician
Total number of interventions
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