Home' Australian Pharmacist : Australian Pharmacist May 2013 Contents Australian Pharmacist May 2013 I ©Pharmaceutical Society of Australia Ltd. 27
Go beach, go bush, go rural
By Francesca Bennetts
Rural pharmacy can offer an exciting start
to any career. Going rural can give you the
opportunity to support the local health
needs of an entire community. NAPSA
strongly encourages students and interns
to experience the different benefits rural
pharmacy can offer.
Pharmacy students can be exposed to
a range of practical skills through rural
placements. The University of Canberra
has recently commenced student
placements on the NSW South coast
with a purpose built mobile health clinic
dedicated to rural care. One student,
Freya Waddington, said that her rural
placement allowed her to 'achieve a real
sense of being a part of the community'.
Many students claim that their placement
experience was the deciding factor in them
pursuing an internship in a rural practice.
Ellen Pedler, a pharmacy intern in Alice
Springs, has loved her transition to
'The great thing about rural pharmacy is
that you can see patients from the start of a
clinical journey right through to successful
management and treatment,' Ellen says.
The National Pharmacy Students' Survey
2012 provided an insight into students'
views of rural pharmacy. Approximately
20% of the 1,136 students who responded
were intending to complete their
internships in a rural setting. Interestingly,
over 70% were unaware of the rural intern
scholarships available through the Fifth
Community Pharmacy Agreement.
NAPSA plans to increase awareness of
funding to support students and interns
through a Rural Fact Sheet, which will be
available in the near future.
In late March the Rural Forum at the
Australian Pharmacy and Professional (APP)
conference saw a large response from the
industry. A wide range of speakers provided
an enlightening discussion on issues such
as S100 and the CTG program.
Last month, the PSA hosted the Medicines
in the Bush Workshop at the 12th National
Rural Health Conference in Adelaide.
This emphasised the importance of
intra-disciplinary health care in rural areas
and was a great opportunity to showcase
the significant job that pharmacists in
rural and remote areas do.
NAPSA encourages students to attend
sessions such as these which provide
valuable insight into issues that may affect
their future rural careers.
In 2012 changes to the allocation of rural
funding to certain PhARIA 1 towns saw
students going to areas such as Lismore,
Casino and Mackay no longer receiving
financial support. Although this has put
strain on rural placements and intern
opportunities, students should still be
encouraged to experience the benefits
rural pharmacy can bring.
Individual rural pharmacists can help
the future of rural pharmacy practice
by acting as positive role models for
students and interns. Rural placements
are vitally important to increase the
number of pharmacy students to support
NAPSA at APP
NAPSA representatives were active at the
Pharmacy Guild of Australia's Australian
Pharmacy Professional Conference and
Trade Exhibition (APP) on the Gold Coast
at the end of March.
'Meeting at APP gave us a valuable
opportunity for face-to-face
communication and forward planning into
this National Council's final quarter,' NAPSA
President Chris Braithwaite said.
In a NAPSA first, the Industrial Affairs
Committee surveyed the profession at the
APP Trade Exhibition. Results are currently
being complied and are looking promising.
The survey showed the pharmacy
profession has a lot of support for NAPSA
and also values the contribution pharmacy
students can make to the workplace,'
Industrial Affairs Chair Xavier Agostino said.
NAPSA aims to use the survey results
to gain a better understanding of the
industry's opinion of issues affecting
pharmacy students, and to compare
these concerns to those identified by
'This will allow us to gain further insight
on particular issues and represent
our members more effectively,'
Mr Agostino said.
NAPSA would like thank the Pharmacy
Guild for its continued support of NAPSA's
attendance at APP.
Francesca Bennetts is the NAPSA Rural
and Indigenous Health Chair.
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