PSA Media Releases 1. Sussan Ley appointment 2. Swearing in of Sussan Ley

December 23, 2014
Important step for healthcare as new Minister sworn in

The swearing in of Sussan Ley as Australia’s new Minister for Health marks an important step in the ongoing health-reform process in this country and also for the future direction of the pharmacy profession, the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia says.

National President of the PSA, Grant Kardachi, welcomes Minister Ley as Minister for Health and Sport, and said that she was taking over the portfolio at a critical time for consumers and health professionals.

Mr Kardachi said that negotiations were about to get underway for the Sixth Community Pharmacy Agreement which was pivotal to the ongoing future of the whole healthcare system in Australia.

He said that Minister Ley’s first priority must be to ensure the sustainability of the community pharmacy sector, and also to make certain the network of pharmacies and the range of professional pharmacist services are maintained. 

“However, we must also look outside the Agreement to other areas where pharmacists can use their skills to deliver a wider range of health services in primary and preventive care,” Mr Kardachi said.

“For example, there is strong evidence, as well as support from the medical profession, for progressing the role of pharmacists in GP surgeries.

“In addition, we must ensure that communities in rural and remote areas are not lagging. This is an area PSA has for many years been urging governments to address.

“Access to pharmacists and health services is not just an urban right – it is a right every member of every community should expect.

“Our 6CPA discussion paper highlights just some strategies that Minister Ley should consider in improving medicine access and quality use of medicines in rural and remote areas.

“We look forward to working closely with Minister Ley and the Government to help ensure we have a sustainable healthcare system into the future.”

December 21, 2014
PSA congratulates Sussan Ley on appointment as Minster for Health and Minister for Sport

 The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia congratulates Sussan Ley on her appointment as Minister for Health and Minister for Sport.

National President of PSA, Grant Kardachi, said the appointment came at an important time for the pharmacy profession and Ms Ley’s broad experience inside and outside of politics would give her a strong foundation in addressing the many challenges of the health portfolio in general, and the pharmacy profession in particular.

“Ms Ley has served as Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Family and Community Services (Children and Youth Affairs); Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry; and most recently Assistant Minister for Education,” Mr Kardachi said.

“In addition in her non-political life she had a variety of roles including as an air-traffic controller, as a farmer and a career with the Australian Tax Office.

“It is refreshing to see this broad experience brought into a senior Ministry.”

Mr Kardachi said Ms Ley’s regional base in Albury, NSW, would also bring a strong regional perspective to the portfolio.

“PSA has long advocated for better pharmacy services to meet the needs of rural and remote Australia and I am confident that Ms Ley’s first-hand experience of living in a regional area will see a sharper focus on services in these areas,” Mr Kardachi said.

“In addition we are coming into the formal negotiations for the Sixth Community Pharmacy Agreement, an Agreement that PSA sees as being instrumental in increasing the delivery of professional services by pharmacists.

“We look forward to discussing these and many other opportunities with Ms Ley at her earliest convenience,” he said.

Mr Kardachi also congratulates outgoing Minister for Health, Peter Dutton, on his new appointment as Minister for Immigration and Border Protection.

“Mr Dutton was always an accessible and pragmatic Minister for Health and displayed great interest in the wide range of skills pharmacists possess and how these skills could be better utilised in providing improved health outcomes for the community,” Mr Kardachi said.

“I thank him for all his efforts on behalf of the pharmacy profession and the community.”

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