Pharmacy Board of Australia - National Board recognises the role of pharmacists in ensuring safe use of medicines
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National Board recognises the role of pharmacists in ensuring safe use of medicines

25 Sep 2019

The Pharmacy Board of Australia (the Board) is recognising the role of pharmacists in ensuring the safe use of medicines during this year’s World Pharmacists Day.

world pharmacist dayMarked worldwide on 25 September, this year’s theme is ‘Safe and effective medicines for all’, in recognition of the vital role of pharmacists in safeguarding patient safety through improving medicine use and reducing medication errors.

2019 marks the tenth year since the annual World Pharmacists Day was first designated by the FIP Council in Istanbul.

As the body responsible for regulating Australia’s 31,955 pharmacists (as at 30 June 2019), the Board is highlighting the expertise of pharmacists and the important role they have in supporting good health within the community.

‘Pharmacists have a central role in ensuring medication safety across the continuum of care, and this year’s theme is a chance to highlight that. Pharmacist involvement in patient care can reduce errors, improve prescribing practices, and enhance patient monitoring across settings,’ Board Chair Brett Simmonds said.

As one of the fundamentals of pharmacy practice, pharmacists across a range of practice settings are promoting judicious, safe and effective use of medicines. To uphold the safe and effective use of medicines, pharmacists may provide drug therapy advice, compound medicines, participate in clinical trials, visit patients in their home or work with other members of the healthcare team to solve medication related issues and increase patient safety.

To ensure medicines are being used safely and effectively, pharmacists are involved in monitoring health outcomes, minimising medicine misuse and empowering patients to manage their medicines. Pharmacists may also be involved in research and development which has a key role in ensuring that medicines are safe and effective. Pharmacists in all settings have essential responsibilities that improve patient safety. Ensuring access to medication, supplying medication information, evaluating medication appropriateness, improving medication adherence and medication management all contribute to safe and effective medicines for all.

Pharmacists must maintain an awareness of the cultural needs and contexts of all patients and clients and provide a culturally safe environment to patients to obtain good health outcomes. They must also use their professional judgement to ensure that a medicine is safe and appropriate for a patient.

As part of its core role to protect the public, the Board regulates pharmacists through exercising its functions under the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law, as in force in each state and territory (the National Law).

The Board sets out the registration standards that establish the requirements for pharmacists to be registered to practise competently and safely in Australia. It also publishes codes and guidelines for pharmacists and maintains the Register of pharmacists which can be accessed from the Board’s website.

Meeting the Board’s requirements for registration and practice, including completion of the annual continuing professional development requirements, maintaining professional indemnity insurance arrangements and complying with all Board registration standards, codes and guidelines, supports safe delivery of important services by pharmacists to the public.

Brett Simmonds
Pharmacy Board of Australia

For more information

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Page reviewed 25/09/2019