EDITORIAL for Monday 1 June 2015

Welcome to this weeks’ edition of i2P (Information to Pharmacists) dated 1 June 2015.
This week still sees some confusion and disappointment after the signing of the 6CPA agreement. While it does not provide the “certainty” that some commentators are reporting, it does give a five-year hiatus before any major disruptive changes are inflicted on the profession as a whole, by government.
But only in the area of PBS, because government will be presented with a range of “king hit” opportunities over this year, mainly managed “under the radar” with the help of the Murdoch press.

It’s also good to see the Professional Pharmacists Association following up on incorporation of clinical pharmacists within GP practices, there is a need also to ensure access for clinical pharmacists in a range of settings such as nursing homes and the discharge processes from public hospitals, but more importantly from community pharmacies themselves.
While tensions may have slightly relaxed between the PGA and clinical pharmacists there is still a lot of “dead wood” to be cleared from this relationship.
Consolidation of the profession is desperately needed because i2P believes that a major force through the return of Roger Corbett, as chairman of directors for Woolworths, will occur past August this year.
The “stars” are well aligned for supermarkets to push ahead with their campaign for pharmacy ownership, and Roger Corbett’s experience on the Wal-Mart board and his strategy direction for them to become a “healthy supermarket” means that he has all the marketing answers for Australian supermarkets.
Read: Pharmacy Nemesis Roger Corbett – Back to the Future

Consider all the political “flack” that has coalesced prior to the signing of the 6CPA but still continues in volume.
i2P believes that these agendas persist because pharmacy leadership does not initiate changes and reforms to our profession at a level that promotes change at an optimum rate. We are still stuck in the “status quo” mode.
Pharmacy disunity assists these pharmacy opponents to continue with their agendas that propose more patient focus, but only see it as reduced prices for everything provided by pharmacy.
i2P’s current view on this is that patients will support a “value” proposal that does not have to be discounted to death.
The PBS now fits the format of “deep discount dispensing” at the end of its commoditised product life cycle, and must be drastically diluted with private enterprise solutions.

Why does pharmacy persist in following a “miswanted” direction?
For an explanation read: Miswanting” –A relevant word for the pharmacy profession .

Mouhamad  Zoghbi is back with us with an article titled The four rules of customer engagement in pharmacy.

This is not meant to be just a product sale, but a philosophical change in the pharmacy market place that can drive better attitudes towards our customers and patients.

Loretta Marron is back with an article regarding cancer.
As a former cancer patient herself, she is able to write from patient experience.
Read: When it comes to cancer – who are the brave ones?

Dr Andrew Byrne is back with us after a visit to the US.
He discusses what approaches the US is now utilising, particularly since the drug “ice” has become so prevalent there, and now here in Australia.
Read: Medical Postcard from New York, April 2015

i2P writers have found some interesting material suggesting that a new treatment for cancer may have been found.
It utilises virus therapy and it is the first tgrfeatment of its kind to reach phase 3 in clinical trials.
If approved it is likely to become more widespread within the cancer community because it has little problem with toxicity reactions common to chemotherapies.
Read: Virotherapy: skin cancer successfully treated with herpes-based drug

Harvey Mackay is back with us and gives us a recipe for successful co-working at any level of the line management chart.
The trend to co-working (freelancing) is on the increase and is predicted to become the major architecture for work into the future.
You can see it happening in pharmacy already where as skills become more marketable and attract a premium, business owners will only want to purchase their exact requirements for a services quantum, not necessarily related to a fixed working week designated in hours.
Co-workers will have to adjust attitudes as they take more responsibility for their work output and tailor their product for an environment that may interact with multiples of co-workers.
Read: For long-term success, give up these detrimental traits

And we include the current weeks’ media releases from PSA and NPS.

There is a good read here that should take up most of your research time over the coming week, if you actually engage in that process.
i2P is designed to help decision-makers, by providing a knowledge management source and point to future directions.

Neil Johnston
1 July, 2015

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