Tuesday, February 07, 2017
This Has To Be Pretty Good News For Patients In Western Australia. Some Lives Should Be Saved.
This appeared last week:
The Western Australian Branch of the Pharmacy Guild says it strongly supports new measures being rolled out in the state to curb “doctor shopping” and self-harm caused by inappropriate use of controlled drugs.
New regulations for the sale, supply and manufacture of medicines and poisons came into effect this week, which are aimed at not only reducing business compliance costs, but also promoting the safe dispensing of controlled drugs.
West Australian Health Minister John Day says the regulations will give force to the Medicines and Poisons Act 2014, bringing Western Australia into line with other States and Territories, reducing duplication and making it easier for national operators to comply with the rules.
“For example, one of the changes means a pharmacist will no longer need to obtain a licence from the Department of Health in addition to meeting the assessment and regulation criteria of the Pharmacy Registration Board of WA,” Mr Day says.
“The new legislation also establishes the legal framework for the transfer of information about the prescribing and dispensing of controlled drugs such as morphine and dexamphetamine, through the use of real-time reporting systems.
“It has enhanced powers to deal with ‘doctor shoppers’ and the ability to better assist doctors manage patients with addiction issues.
“However, the legislation also includes strict safeguards over the use and sharing of this sensitive data and maintains controls around high-risk medications.”
There was additional coverage in the professional press.
2 February, 2017
WA pharmacists can look forward to a new state-funded system that will enable them to spot doctor shoppers.
The $1 million program will be rolled out in stages until late 2018. It will enable real time reporting when prescriptions are filled in pharmacies.
WA Pharmacy Guild National Councillor Lenette Mullen says the system is long overdue.
“It is high time for an effective real time recording system to be in place everywhere across Australia, and in that regard Western Australia has taken a very significant step forward,” she says.
Just co-incidentally this appeared as I was preparing the blog:
CHRIS PIPPOS, Sunday Tasmanian
AN average of 40 patient red-flag “interventions” are being made in Tasmania every day by doctors, pharmacists and health regulators to stop the potential fatal misuse of prescription drugs.
Tasmania’s chief pharmacist Peter Boyles says the state’s real-time reporting system has stopped the prescribing and dispensing of opioid analgesic drugs, such as morphine, to between 30 and 50 prescription drug users daily.
This has helped slash the fatal overdose rate from an average of 25 to about 17 deaths a year, the Sunday Tasmanian can reveal.
And the number of interventions — of varying degrees of significance — initiated by pharmacists and doctors was growing, Mr Boyles said.
The Drugs and Poisons Information System Online Remote Access (DORA) system, which only operates in Tasmania but is being considered nationally, is successfully tackling the problem of doctor shopping, where users can play two doctors off against each other to obtain medication.
Lots more here:
So not only do we have a system that seems to be saving lives but now people in WA can take advantage once the system is up and rolling. We also need to see all the other States get their act together and get the system up and running - as when I last checked there were a few laggards as well as WA which is now acting.
Posted by Dr David G More MB PhD at Tuesday, February 07, 2017