PSA launches contemporary community pharmacy practice white paper

Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA)

The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) is today launching its first contemporary community pharmacy practice White Paper, which highlights three key elements of consideration which form the foundation of a viable and sustainable contemporary community pharmacy practice:

  1. Community pharmacy workforce capacity and capability;
  2. Recognition and remuneration for community pharmacists; and
  3. Innovative and sustainable community pharmacy practice model.

The paper was developed by the PSA Contemporary Community Pharmacy Practice – Community of Specialty Interest (CSI-CCPP) Group, which seeks to identify, debate and articulate the complexities, opportunities and challenges facing community pharmacy within contemporary practice environments. It highlights two key roles of community pharmacists as primary healthcare providers and medicine experts. The group aims to guide advocacy efforts of the PSA, which ultimately supports our profession toward achieving a patient-centred, viable and sustainable practice model in the Australian community pharmacy sector – one that meets contemporary needs of the community and the Australian health system. CSI-CCPP Chair and PSA National President-elect Dr Fei Sim says that CSI-CCPP’s first white paper presents a consolidated view of the issues facing community pharmacy practice in Australia and proposes direction to achieve viability and sustainability in contemporary practice. “This White Paper will set the direction for the next five years and drive community pharmacist practice toward a sustainable and effective practice model,” Dr Sim said. “We have seen significant shifts in the roles of community pharmacists in the last few years, and there’s no doubt they will continue to change. It is important that we look at what is working and where we can improve.

“The COVID-19 pandemic and increasingly frequent natural disasters have highlighted the critical role community pharmacists play in primary health care. Community pharmacists and general practitioners together can strengthen our primary health care system, alleviating the pressure on our emergency departments and hospitals. “Every contact a patient has with a pharmacist is an opportunity to impart a health message, deliver primary health care, and improve the health of the community.

“However, as pharmacists adapt to increasing community needs, the remuneration of community pharmacists has continued to lag, pegged to an outdated supply model. This continues to put excessive pressure on the workforce. “This White Paper adds to existing discussions, including PSAs call to improve pharmacist remuneration. It seeks to recognise, restructure, and remunerate the contribution of community pharmacists within the Australian health system and is intended to set the direction for the next five years and drive community pharmacy toward a sustainable and effective practice model.”

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