Following the release of the Australian Government’s Intergenerational Report 2023, the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) has called for pharmacists to be able to do more to support the country’s increased healthcare needs as our population ages.
The report, released yesterday, highlights five major factors affecting public policy moving forward. In particular, the report acknowledges that Australia’s ageing population and rising demand for care and support services will add further pressure on our already strained health system, hospital emergency departments, and further exacerbate wait times in General Practice.
PSA National President Dr Fei Sim FPS said the report highlighted both the urgent and the long-term need for pharmacists in all practice areas to work to their top of scope.
“The Federal Government’s Intergenerational Report confirmed that our gaining population will continue to have a significant impact on the Australian economy,” she said.
“Combined with the rising demand for quality health care services, we must be able to ensure the long-term sustainability of our health system.
“Access to care is a growing issue in Australia, and the situation is exacerbated in rural and remote communities.
“Australians need all health professionals working to their top of scope – including pharmacists.”
The Federal Government also announced yesterday that Professor Mark Cormack will lead the Unleashing the Potential of our Health Workforce Review, to be delivered in 2024.
“The government’s scope of practice review needs to heed the warnings of the Intergenerational report and unlock the potential of our health workforce using pharmacists,” Dr Sim said.
“Pharmacists are highly trained health professionals and should be supported to practise to full scope, contributing to sustainability of our health system to enable equitable access to healthcare by all Australians.
“There are a range of common ailments which can be safely and effectively managed by pharmacists, supported by international evidence, facilitating safe and timely care.
“This can only be achieved with meaningful investment and funding to empower pharmacists to deliver important health care to Australians.
“Pharmacists can, and should, play a significant role to improve Australian’s access to care, and contribute towards quality, safe and effective use of medicines in all parts of the healthcare system.
“On behalf of Australian pharmacists, I congratulate Professor Cormack on his appointment and look forward to working with and his team on the Unleashing the Potential of our Health Workforce Review,” Dr Sim concluded.
The Federal Government’s Intergenerational Report is available here.
Media contact: Georgia Clarke
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The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia is the only national peak body that represents all of Australia’s pharmacists across all practice settings. We want every Australian to have access to the best healthcare, and this must include optimising access to pharmacists’ knowledge and medicines expertise at the forefront of our healthcare system.