30 January 2011
The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia has presented a 2012-13 Budget submission proposing the Australian Government provide funding of $6.3 million for the introduction of a federally-funded pilot program aimed at improving health outcomes in targeted population groups through the employment of pharmacists.
The submission says the proposed Pharmacists and Chronic Disease (PACD) program would have two distinct but related components: the Pharmacists in Remote Aboriginal Health Services (PIRAHS) project; and the Mental Health Liaison Pharmacist (MHLP) project.
The PSA highlights that its submission:
- targets key shortcomings in the safety and quality of health services for high-risk population groups in the community;
- will create synergies with additional value to the Government’s health-reform framework;
- addresses unmet need for services;
- builds capacity in the health workforce; and
- gives expression to the Australian Government’s policy objectives underpinning the key national health strategies.
National President of the PSA, Grant Kardachi, said the submission built on PSA calls for an investment in mental health care that links the needs of people with chronic disease to health reform.
“PSA believes that for a small investment by Government, pharmacists can help deliver major improvements to heath outcomes for patients with mental health problems,” Mr Kardachi said.
“A liaison pharmacist program would help people with mental health problems transition between acute care – or the hospital sector – back into the community where most of their care is provided.
“This is clearly an area of need and a liaison pharmacist would help patients navigate the system and link them back with their community pharmacist and GP, working though Medicare Locals to assist both the local hospital network and theMedicare Local to achieve their goals.”
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