Issue 7
February 21, 2019
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Integration of Pharmacists into General Practice Sites

In a bid to close a critical gap to decrease the number of Australians admitted to hospital as a result of medicine-related problems, WentWest, the Western Sydney Primary Health Network established the Western Sydney General Practice Pharmacist Program to trial the implementation of a collaborative, patient-centred primary care model.

It is predicted that by 2050 the proportion of the Australian population aged between 65 to 84 will double. With this increase in age, there could also be an rise in chronic medical conditions and associated medication use. As the number of medications patients are taking grows, there is a corresponding increase in drug-related problems, causing a significant number of Australian hospital admissions.

Over the past four years the program has involved the integration of pharmacists into general practice sites in western Sydney working collaboratively as part of the patient care team. The project was designed in partnership with the University of Technology Sydney who continue to provide academic support to the program as the evidence base builds.

A new report has revealed 250,000 Australians are hospitalised each year, with another 400,000 presenting to emergency departments, as a result of medication errors, inappropriate use misadventure and interactions – at least half of which could have been prevented. The full media release can be found on the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia’s website.

The recent Australian Institute of Health and Welfare report on Potentially Preventable Hospitalisations in Australia, also contains some interesting and challenging data for all primary, specialist and other healthcare providers in community-based settings across our region, exploring the top reasons people are hospitalised.

The integration of pharmacists into the general practice setting strongly aligns with the principles of the Patient Centred Medical Home program, which WentWest previously supported.

More information about the Western Sydney General Practice Pharmacist Program can be found online.

HealthPathways: Treating Eating Disorders in Primary Care
Thursday 28th Feb, 6:30pm - 9:00pm
Health Care Professionals: Productivity Commission Mental Health Inquiry Consultation (AM)
Friday 1st Mar, 9:00am - 12:00pm
Detecting and Managing Chronic Kidney Disease
Thursday 7th Mar, 6:00pm - 8:30pm
Curing Hepatitis C in Your General Practice
Wednesday 13th Mar, 7:00pm - 9:30pm

Get the Facts Childhood Immunisation Campaign Resources

As part of the Australian Government Department of Health's Get the Facts immunisation education campaign, a range of resources have been developed for immunisation providers with patients who have questions about vaccinations.

These patient resources are available on the campaign's resource page, and includes a suite of new videos covering topics such as vaccination timing, protection and safety.

BreastScreen Dates

The BreastScreen trailer will be at Stanhope Village Shopping Centre from Thursday 11 March to Thursday 11 April, offering screening for all women aged 40 years and over. Appointments can be made by calling BreastScreen NSW on 13 20 50.

Legislation Amendments Consumer Video

On 26 November 2018, the Australian Parliament passed the My Health Records Amendment (Strengthening Privacy) Bill 2018.

There were a number of amendments in the Bill that strengthened My Health Record's privacy and security protections which is supported by harsher penalties and fines for inappropriate or unauthorised use. A new consumer video explaining the changes is now available.

A summary of the amendments is also available on the My Health Record website.

GP Association meetings

The following GP Association meetings are coming up in western Sydney:

Mount Druitt: Walking into Good Health, Community Initiative to Promote Smoking Cessation, Friday 22nd March.

Hills: Walking into Good Health, Community Initiative to Promote Smoking Cessation, Wednesday 10th April.

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