Home' Australian Pharmacist : Australian Pharmacist August 2012 Contents Australian Pharmacist August 2012 I © Pharmaceutical Society of Australia Ltd.
Getting the medicines right outlines the
results of a six-month project involving
over 30 healthcare organisations which
volunteered to implement RPS guidance
on transfer of medicines information.
The guidance was endorsed by the Royal
College of General Practitioners, the Royal
College of Nursing, the Royal College of
Physicians and the Academy of Medical
RPS Policy and Practice Lead, Heidi Wright
said, ‘Getting the transfer of medicines
information right can be challenging
as patients follow complex pathways
and systems vary between providers.
However, it’s totally unacceptable that
poor transfer of medicines information
continues to compromise patient care.
‘Strategies must improve and the
experiences of the volunteer sites in
driving change in their organisations have
created a set of recommendations which
should be adopted across the NHS’.
The Report recommends:
• All suppliers of IT systems to hospitals
and general practice should ensure
their systems can effectively transfer
recommended core content of
• All community pharmacies should have
an NHS.net website address to enable
secure communications between
secondary and primary care
• All clinical records should be structured
in a recognised and nationally agreed
format to assist interoperability and the
transfer of information
• National sharing of the most effective
ways of signposting patients in
secondary care to the post discharge
Medicine Review Service and New
Medicine Service provided by
community pharmacists to enable
patients to optimise benefits from
• Commissioning of post-discharge
MURs for vulnerable patients should
be considered as part of the pharmacy
Projects included improving medicines
reconciliation procedures, driving up
standards of discharge information
and focussing on communication with
patients, for example through patient
held medication records or ‘green bag’
schemes, where patients’ medicines are
collated into a reusable green bag prior
to admission or post-discharge. The sites
worked with front-line staff, clinicians,
patients and managers and encompassed
a wide variety of care settings such as
hospitals, care homes and sheltered
housing. They were supported by a virtual
faculty of experts and peer support
through structured workshops provided
by the Society.
‘It’s great that so much progress has
been made on the ground in such a short
time. Reducing avoidable harm and
medicines related admissions to hospital
remains paramount. The challenge now
is to keep the momentum going to drive
improvements locally and ensure that
patient safety risks are addressed on a
national level,’ Ms Wright said.
Men do visit the doctor
Australian men are not avoiding the
doctor or suffering health problems in
silence according to a new survey.
The survey shows that 86% of men aged
40 to 69 years have seen a doctor in the
past 12 months, with an average of four
visits per person.
However, more than half of the men
surveyed reported that they would not be
comfortable seeking advice from a doctor
on issues of a more sensitive nature,
such as erection problems or their libido.
These are key findings of The HIS Report,
which is based on a nationwide survey
of more than 1,500 men aged 40–69
years which was conducted by Galaxy
Research for Lilly Australia and explores
the attitudes of mid-life males to health,
identity and sex.
According to The HIS Report, blood
pressure, cholesterol, diabetes and
weight are the health issues most men
aged 40 to 69 years expect to discuss,
along with the state of their prostate and
family medical history. Few men expect
to discuss more personal matters, such as
their sex life.
Jeff Gilling, a Melbourne-based social
researcher said, ‘ The reluctance of men to
talk about personal matters stems in part
from the social stigma attached to issues
relating to ageing and masculinity.
‘A man confiding in a doctor that he has
erection problems, or that his sex life is
lagging, is a big admission. It says, “I’m
getting older and I’m not as resilient as I
once was”. Inside most of today’s mid-life
males is a 20-something man wondering
how he got there. To admit that the
very thing that signifies masculinity and
youthfulness is not working properly is a
very big deal,’ he said.
Copies of the HIS Report are
downloadable from: www.HISreport.
New professions regulated
from 1 July
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander
health practitioners, Chinese medicine
practitioners, medical radiation
practitioners and occupational therapists
joined the National Registration
and Accreditation Scheme on 1 July.
Unlike the transition to the National
Scheme in 2010, these professions have
not previously been regulated in all states
and territories. This means that more than
16,000 practitioners have transitioned
from an existing state or territory board,
and that more than 14,000 practitioners
will be registering for the first time.
London 2 – 9 May 2013
Excellence in education
PSA Offshore Refresher
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