EDITORIAL for Monday 16 May 2016

Welcome to this edition of i2P (information to Pharmacists) E-Magazine, dated Monday 16 May 2016.
It is acknowledged that working interactively and collaboratively across professional and organisational silos, is more likely to lead to research and work experiences that is relevant, timely and contributes to effective policy and practice – a professionally satisfying experience.
Acknowledging the problem is always a good starting point, as well as fleshing out the issues surrounding or blocking potential solutions to the problems.
But has anyone specialising in pharmacy education designed a business model of education that could deliver solutions for all the silos within a community pharmacy- and all at once?

One of the curiosities of pharmacy as a community pharmacy business model is that it is a collective of different activities delivered by a range of people, some highly trained and very competent, who are not practising pharmacists.
Yet this disparate group of people appear to work harmoniously making a contribution to the culture of the business model that for many years had a “sameness” about it – and still receives criticism for not evolving to “different”.

As pharmacists we are being encouraged to develop collaboration with GP’s, which has always been approached with a bit of anticipatory tension by both sides.
Once borders to collaboration were identified, relationships that were regarded as respectful did develop even though they were the exception, rather than the rule.

My view is that we should use our community pharmacies as working models and first identify the silos within. Then move on to develop a training model which allows all personnel within a pharmacy to share aspects of their jobs that would encourage harmonisation and knowledge improvement.
I believe that could kindle the spark called imagination evolving to a creative thought from any individual from any silo.
The “What if” question and explanation when examined, collectively translates further to an innovation.

Innovation is the initial blueprint for a pharmacy project that will lift overall productivity and job satisfaction.
Because all pharmacy personnel have been involved in its conception and evolution no matter what their hierarchical position and it would have required a mentoring and nurturing management style to bring it into being.

So should not the pathway to pharmacy collaboration firstly begin from within and maybe to progress to all other health modalities (without judgement) before coming to grips with the medical profession?
Because the medical profession also has to undergo its own culture change before it will be able to successfully collaborate with all others in the world of primary health care.
If we are clever enough within pharmacy we may produce a collaboration model that the medical profession might aspire to, rather than have the medical profession impose their version because pharmacy does not have a suitable model of its own.

Our lead article for this edition talks about how the core business of dispensing might disappear completely if robotics (not just dispensing automation) takes hold and pharmacist aspirations become derailed by financially stronger corporate interests.
Read: Your Dispensary – Core Business Could Evaporate

Closely allied to the lead article is one by Peter Sayers who describes technology that can take over human communication of knowledge with an accuracy edge that can exceed the average human.
That could disrupt doctors and pharmacists.
So where will that lead us?
Read: Avatars May Take Over Patient Communications – Where to from there?

The clinical nutrition newsletter Orthomolecular Medicine News Service reports that in the US general population from 2005 to 2011, prescription drug use rose from 84.1% to 87.7% and dietary supplements from 51.8% to 63.7% over that time.
Because fish oil supplements individually increased from 4.7 percent to 18.6 percent over the same period, they were blamed by JAMA Internal Medicine as causing an increase in blood thinner adverse events from 8.4 percent to 15.1 percent.
However, the reverse is actually true with fish oil actually working to minimise damage by blood thinners.
Blood thinners use increased from 32.8 percent to 43 percent over the same period.
Drug manufacturers have previously introduced nutraceuticals to offset the problems of their drug side effect, having a convenient scapegoat if adverse reports got out of hand.
Read: Fish Oil Capsules Get Blamed For Unreported Drug Interactions – Now THERE’S a Surprise . . .

We have begun to republish some of the University of Melbourne’s Melbourne School of Population and Global Health, Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences articles.
The reason for this is because they seem to be considering all the available options for managing health economically and then develop research to prove why those options actually work.
So we are getting evidence-based support for those things we have always recommended but criticised for by the medical skeptic community, more concerned with protecting their grants from Big Pharma than actually developing honest research projects.
Read: Meditating on our health

Gerald Quigley is back and poses a question as to why medical professionals have so much hostility between themselves instead of being problem solving and collaborative.
Will collaboration develop to close the divide?
Read: Why are health professionals so hostile to each other?

Harvey Mackay is back discussing one of those worrying aspects of life that affect us all at different and most inconvenient times.
It is, of course, not remembering someone’s name.
This can be frustrating and contribute to confusion as you struggle to recover the vital information without seeming to be the “village idiot”.
Read: I’ll never forget what’s-his-name

Judy Wilyman works tirelessly to ensure that all Australians have a safe vaccination policy to be vaccinated, or if a health professional, a safe product to work with.
While some vaccines may be judged reasonably safe, they are definitely in the minority.
She is unable to get rational and non-evasive answers and it appears that Australian regulators have been taken prisoners by Big Pharma.
Even our current prime minister (and his family) seem to have a conflict of interest with the vaccine industry.
Judy has been very prolific in her writing since our last edition, so we have organised her work into logical and chronological sections for ease of reading.
Read: Letters, Newsletters and Abstracts in Support of Your Human Rights Surrounding Vaccination Policy

And we finish up this week’s offering with a range of press releases from pharmacy organisations
Read: National Volunteer Week 2016:    THANK YOU to PSS volunteers
and PSA Media Releases – 1. Early Career Pharmacists to Join National Board 2. Pharmacist Vaccination Boost to Public Health 3. PSA Funded as Peak Body 4. Budget Funding Adequacy Questioned

Enjoy your read for this edition and don’t hesitate to use the comment spaces at the foot of each article.

Neil Johnston
Editor, i2P E-Magazine
Monday May 16 2016

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