Tuesday, May 26, 2015
Now This Is Going To Make A Major Change To The Way The PCEHR Will Work. Will Be Fun To Watch.
This appeared a few days ago.
Date May 18, 2015 - 11:41PM
"There is an opportunity for pharmacists to step into the primary care space, but we are doing this carefully and in an evidence-based way": Health Minister Sussan Ley.
Pharmacists could receive public funding to dress wounds, deliver vaccinations and give weight loss advice under a $19 billion deal between the Abbott government and the powerful Pharmacy Guild.
Under the five-year agreement, announced by Health Minister Sussan Ley on Monday, patients could pay $1 less per script from July under a change the government hopes will promote greater competition among pharmacists.
It will be up to pharmacists to decide whether to offer the $1 discount, and pharmacists that do offer the discount would have to absorb its cost.
The government expects the optional discount, which is opposed by the Pharmacy Guild, to save taxpayers about $360 million over the life of the agreement, due to fewer patients qualifying for free medicines under the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme safety net.
The discount, which would reduce the concessional patient contribution to $5.10 a script and the general patient contribution to $36.70 a script, is at odds with legislation before the Parliament to increase patient contributions for concessional patients by 80 cents a script and for general patients by $5 a script.
The increase to patient contributions, worth more than $1 billion over four years, remains government policy but is unlikely to pass the Senate.
Most of the $19 billion provided under the deal will be paid to pharmacists for dispensing Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme drugs, but $1.2 billion will fund trials in which pharmacists would perform work currently undertaken by doctors and nurses.
This could include vaccinations, wound care and the management of chronic conditions such as arthritis. Pharmacists have previously proposed offering checks for weight, blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol.
So we are to have pharmacists acting as clinical practitioners. Just what does this mean for their record keeping and interaction with the PCEHR?
Surely the pharmacists will need to keep full details of what they thought was wrong with the patient and what was done and so on and that this needs to be kept in some form of electronic record - which will need all the usual protections etc. Do they have such systems at present? I suspect not.
Just how a pharmacy consultation record might be sent to the PCEHR - and what it should contain and how it might differ from a medical Summary Health Record will need to be sorted out, tested and confirmed to be useful etc.
Will be very interesting to see how all this is handled by the e-Health geniuses running the PCEHR program.
Somehow I can see a fumble or two here!
Posted by Dr David G More MB PhD at Tuesday, May 26, 2015