Addressing the specific needs of adolescents
Making it easier to know HIV status
Better equipping adolescents
Note to editors
Coordination of relief supplies for health
Online supply tracking system
WHO humanitarian supply hubs
Nov 20 2013
Leading Queensland pharmacy figure Professor Nick Shaw has been awarded this year’s prestigious Bowl of Hygeia Award which recognises an exceptional individual service to the pharmacy profession.
The award was announced at the annual dinner of the Queensland Branch of the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia by Branch President Professor Lisa Nissen.
Professor Shaw was presented the award in recognition of his leadership in drawing the Pharmacy Australia Centre of Excellence (PACE) to successful completion, retaining its original concept of strong links to the profession, and utilising those links to achieve a contemporary curriculum and a connected, engaged student cohort.
Professor Nissen said Professor Shaw was recognised for his contribution to education leadership, his advocacy for the profession as Head of School at the University of Queensland, and also for his work as a member of a number of key professional committees.
“The Bowl of Hygeia Award is presented to a member of PSA who has demonstrated a consistently high standard of professional practice in support of the principles of pharmacy service to the community,” Professor Nissen said.
“Nick Shaw is known to most people in his many leadership roles as someone who goes about his work with commitment, dedication and grace; underneath which lies a strong and enduring passion for the profession.”
Professor Nissen said Professor Shaw had taken the PACE vision to reality as one of his first accomplishments on taking over as Head of School at UQ some 10 years ago.
“Nick coordinated the design of the research and teaching spaces, ensuring the relevant staff and key players were involved in the process to ensure that the outcomes were optimum for the School,” Professor Nissen said.
“Following on from this great work, Nick felt that the profession needed graduates that have a greater sense of belonging and connectedness to the profession.
“He believed that it was essential to establish an identity and feel part of our strong community and to entrench this early in the program he introduced a ’coating ceremony’ of which he invited PSA to become a partner.”
Professor Shaw has a very high representative profile outside of the School of Pharmacy and his roles include having been Chair of the Committee of Heads of Pharmacy Schools in Australia and NZ and also leading the group which in 2009 incorporated the Council of Pharmacy Schools, of which he is Chair. In addition he has held positions Australian Pharmacy Liaison Forum and Councillor of the Australian Pharmacy Council as well as being a member of its Accreditation Committee.
Professor Nissen said Professor Shaw had been genuinely surprised and touched at receiving the award.
“He paid homage to others before him, including Professor Sue Tett and key PSA people including Warren Blee, Peter Mayne and Jay Hooper as well as key people at the Pharmacy Guild including Kos Sclavos for helping to bring the initial PACE vision to reality for the profession in Queensland,” Professor Nissen said. “He is a most worthy, though humble, recipient.”
New guidelines reflect new opportunities and technologies
Severely malnourished children with HIV
Infants under 6 months with severe acute malnutrition
Nov , 20 2013
Scholastic achievement and a commitment to advancing the practice of pharmacy in Australia have combined to see Griffith University’s Rebecca Curran being named the Professor James Dare PSA Pharmacy Graduate of the Year for 2013.
The award honours Emeritus Professor James Dare who was a member of the Council of the PSA Qld Branch for many years and was awarded of a Fellowship of the Society as well as a Fellowship of the Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Australia.
Presenting the awards, PSA Queensland Branch President Professor Lisa Nissen said Rebecca was an excellent pharmacy student who excelled in her studies, research and represented the university internationally.
“She is committed to advancing the pharmacy profession in Australia, and as the recipient of a Prime Ministers Australia Asia Postgraduate Award is currently completing her honours research at the National Heart Centre in Singapore,” Professor Nissen said.
“Upon completion of her internship she is committed to undertaking higher degree research. Rebecca has been a very involved and respected pharmacy student.
“She was outgoing and friendly and contributed greatly to her cohort. She was highly regarded by her peers and academics within the School of Pharmacy.”
In nominating Ms Curran, Griffith University said she was an honest, respectful and ethical young person who was committed to practising pharmacy with a high degree of professionalism.
“She is also enrolled into an honours degree and eager to complete her doctoral degree in pharmacy. Rebecca is keen to pursue a future career in hospital pharmacy and to advance the practice of pharmacy through research. Rebecca is an excellent student who has been a fantastic ambassador for our school and the pharmacy profession,” the nomination read.
Professor Nissen said Ms Curran stood out among an outstanding field of nominees made up of Rebecca, QUT’s Manisha Singh, JCU’s Karen Campbell and UQ’s Braedon Damon.
“These are outstanding young pharmacists who represent the very best of our profession as we move forward,” Professor Nissen said.
MEDIA CONTACT: Michelle Rosenthal 0414181641
Nov 6 , 2013
The announcement by the Treasurer, Joe Hockey, to scrap plans to introduce a $2000 cap on tax deductibility of education expenses has been welcomed by the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia.
The National President of PSA, Grant Kardachi, said the decision recognised the importance of continuing professional education and also the challenges that many people faced in meeting mandatory levels of annual continuing education.
“PSA fought hard to have this plan scrapped and our concerns, along with the concerns of other professional organisations, have been recognised and acted upon,” Mr Kardachi said.
“The Government must provide incentives and support for pharmacists and other professionals to undertake educational activities to further expand their knowledge and provide better healthcare for the public we serve, rather than impose barriers to further education.
“For the pharmacy profession, as with other professions in rural and remote settings, there are difficulties for pharmacists attending educational events.
“This would have severely disadvantaged pharmacists who are serving a critical health need in often difficult circumstances.
“For these pharmacists $2000 would not even pay for an airfare and accommodation to attend one professional education event in a major population centre, let alone pay for journal subscriptions and other education activities.
“Women would also have been particularly hard hit in the pharmacy profession as many work part time but still need to meet the annual mandatory continuing professional educational requirements to gain registration and to practise as pharmacists. About two thirds of the pharmacy workforce are women, often with young families and working part time.”
Mr Kardachi said the decision to scrap the plans was recognition that in effect it would have been an unfair tax on a captive group of professionals who must by law complete continuing education to maintain their professional registration.
PSA was a member of the Scrap the Cap Alliance, which had more than 60 member organisations covering more than 1.6 million professionals, including universities, pharmacists, nurses, engineers, accountants, lawyers, veterinarians, doctors, allied health professionals, and small business operators.
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The National Heart Foundation has issued the following media release in response to last night’s ABC Catalyst program in relation to heart medication and cholesterol:
Keep taking cholesterol medication
The National Heart Foundation of Australia is urging people not to change their medication or ignore their cholesterol levels following ABC media reports questioning the benefits of statins in the treatment of heart disease.
The call comes after the recent ABC Catalyst program questioned whether cholesterol is an important risk factor for heart disease and suggested the benefits of statins (cholesterol-lowering drugs) were overstated.
The Heart Foundation’s National CEO Dr Lyn Roberts said the program has caused confusion in the community and she was worried it may be putting lives at risk.
“We know patients are already contacting their GPs and health professionals anxious about their heart health on the basis of the program. The Heart Foundation and the wider medical community are concerned that people may have been misled and might stop taking their statins without consulting their doctor,” Dr Roberts said.
“The conclusions presented in the ABC Catalyst program are not supported by the Heart Foundation or the vast majority of the medical and scientific communities[i] across the country and internationally.
“High cholesterol remains a major risk factor for heart attack, stroke and peripheral vascular disease and having multiple risk factors places you at higher risk.
“We are shocked by the disregard of the evidence and we are considering our next course of action.”
The Heart Foundation’s Chief Medical Adviser Professor James Tatoulis said that after a heart attack, treatment with a statin is standard, evidence-based management.
“Cholesterol-lowering drugs, known as statins, are the most commonly prescribed drugs in Australia and are a very effective way of reducing the risk of having a heart attack, particularly for people who have heart disease,” Prof Tatoulis said.
“Some of the largest studies ever conducted in medicine have demonstrated that statins decrease further heart attacks and save lives.
“Cholesterol remains an important risk factor for heart disease, but it’s important to remember that it’s just one risk factor and all other risks need to be considered to work out a person’s overall risk of heart attack.
“The Heart Foundation recommends that cholesterol, along with other risk factors including blood pressure, BMI, family history, smoking and physical inactivity are all considered when determining someone’s risk and if they need drug treatment.
“For many, their medication is life-saving but medication is never a substitute for a healthy lifestyle – we encourage all Australians to be active for 30 minutes a day, to eat healthily, be smoke-free and to achieve and maintain a healthy weight.
“We want everyone to be aware of their risk factors and recommend everyone 45 and over (35 if you are Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander person) to visit their GP annually for a heart health check to calculate their risk of having a heart attack and discuss how to manage their risks with their doctor.”
Information from the Heart Foundation on how to lower your cholesterol is available at
http://www.heartfoundation.org.au/healthy-eating/fats/Pages/cholesterol.aspx or by calling our Health Information Service on 1300 36 27 87.
– ends –
Previous media release on Part 1 of the Catalyst “Heart of the Matter” report is available at: http://www.heartfoundation.org.au/news-media/Media-Releases-2013/Pages/cholesterol-important-risk-factor-heart-disease.aspx
The Pharmacy Guild of Australia has welcomed the decision of the Abbott Government to scrap the former Government’s proposed cap on tax deductions for work-related self-education expenses.
The proposed measure was bad public policy, and contrary to the interests of a skilled workforce with the most up-to-date professional knowledge to assist in the treatment of patients.
As a condition of ongoing registration to practice, pharmacists by law must undertake a mandatory amount of continuing professional development, with accredited pharmacists having additional requirements. It made no sense to cap the level of support for this mandatory self-education.
The Executive Director of the Guild, David Quilty, said: “This is a good decision by Treasurer Hockey. By abolishing the proposal, the Abbott Government has removed a risk that the quality and safety of health delivery in Australia would be reduced.
“We were pleased to be able to work constructively with the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia – as well as many other professional organisations – to make the case against this counterproductive savings measure,” he said.