2022 in review

2022 in review website image

It has been another big year in pharmacy, and PDL is aware of the ongoing pressure Australian pharmacists have been under. The COVID-19 pandemic, staffing shortages, public aggression and workload issues are just some of the challenges pharmacists have faced. We would like to congratulate PDL members for the service you have continued to provide to the public and for always ‘being there’, even when times are tough.

While we know pharmacists always prioritise their patients, we’d like to encourage you to be mindful of your own well-being. We hope you can set aside time for yourself when the opportunity presents itself over the coming months.

For those celebrating the festive season, we hope you have a safe and enjoyable break with loved ones. We wish all PDL members a prosperous 2023, both professionally and personally.

To finish, we thought we would share some PDL highlights with you.

Support for pharmacists administering COVID-19 vaccines

PDL would like to acknowledge the Australian pharmacist workforce for their magnificent effort in administering over nine million COVID vaccines and how they performed under such difficult circumstances. It is pleasing to note that PDL has only received a small number of COVID vaccine incident reports in proportion to the large number administered. PDL worked closely with its underwriter, Guild Insurance, to make sure pharmacists were covered for this service. The PDL Professional Officers remained available 24/7 to members and released Practice Alerts informing members of any legislative changes and risk management advice to help reduce vaccination errors.

UTIPP-Q success in Queensland

PDL was proud to play a role in the transition of the UTIPP-Q pilot to a permanent pharmacy service in Queensland. From the beginning, PDL was involved in the development of the program and had a key role in identifying areas of risk within the pilot and providing risk management advice to the working group. As the insurer for many Australian pharmacists, PDL worked with Guild Insurance to ensure the pilot was incorporated into the PDL Master Policy for participating pharmacists. The PDL Professional Officers were available to offer advice and support if there was an issue or incident involving the pilot activities.

Top five Practice Alerts for this year

PDL has released many Practice Alerts in 2022, and they’re available in your PDL member portal. The top five alerts of the year are as followed:

1. Private fentanyl and other opioid prescriptions
2. RTPM and your responsibilities
3. Schedule 8 medicines management – tips to avoid the pitfalls
4. Top 10 drugs in PDL incident reports
5. Be alert with varicella vaccines

PSA sponsorship agreement

We’re thrilled to share that PDL has entered a new partnership with the PSA to work collaboratively to enhance medicine safety and practice support. Together, both organisations will work on new medicine safety initiatives, including support for a future nationally coordinated pharmacovigilance system and medicine incident and near-miss reporting systems, to provide feedback on the safe and effective use of medicines. We look forward to working with the PSA in the new year and supporting Australian pharmacists to practice safely.

Medicines to Ukraine

PDL has been in contact with UK pharmacist Mark Koziol, who is the Chairman of the Pharmacists’ Defence Association (PDA) and a volunteer for the charitable campaign Medicines to Ukraine. The campaign was launched to raise money for specialist medicines that Ukrainian hospitals urgently need, and the medicines are delivered by volunteer pharmacists, like Mark.

On behalf of PDL members and Australian pharmacists, we are donating $25,000AUD to show our support for the people of Ukraine and the work that Mark and the other volunteer pharmacists are doing. It is a great reminder that pharmacy can respond and deliver leadership in times of crisis.

To learn more about this campaign, you can listen to Mark at the recent International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) Congress. If you would like to donate, you can do this via the Catholic Agency for Overseas Development (CAFOD) Just Giving page.

We will also be giving our annual donation of $25,000AUD to the Pharmacists’ Support Service (PSS) to support the voluntary work they do for the mental health of Australian pharmacists.

PDL website and logo

The PDL website and logo have been updated as part of our continuous improvement as an organisation and to better meet the needs of our members.