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Australia’s first full-time in-house pharmacist sees great initial results


 

Goodwin is proud to have lead the Australian aged care industry in being the first aged care services provider in Australia to employ a full-time on-site clinical pharmacist in residential care.

Now, approximately ten months since pharmacist Richard Thorpe joined Goodwin, we are able to see the many benefits of having a pharmacist in action.

Goodwin’s Chief Executive Officer Sue Levy said, ‘It’s been wonderful to see benefits – not just in the well being of our residents, but also for staff, families, and external consulting medical professionals.’

Ms Levy said, ‘The care staff feel more supported. They receive more training and education which allows them to be more confident in their role, and they always know they have a professional to consult if they have any questions or uncertainties.’

‘We’re seeing improvements and time reductions in medication rounds, allowing carers to spend more time with residents to provide other forms of support.’

Traditionally, pharmacists visit sites to conduct medication reviews and may not return for quite some time. But because Goodwin’s pharmacist is there on the ground, he can immediately see how the medications are taking effect and be quick to spot any adverse reactions.

‘Ongoing relationships between clinical staff and residents are important in an aged care environment. As we age, our responsiveness to medication changes as well, so it’s important to check in with people regularly to ensure people are responding to medications as they should,’ said Ms Levy.

Mr Thorpe’s role in microbial stewardship and the administration of staff flu vaccinations has resulted in a staff vaccination rate far exceeding the industry average, mitigating the effects of Canberra’s severe 2019 flu season.

‘Everything gets down to improving the quality of life for the residents and to have someone on site who can be their advocate and help insure quality use of medicines’.

Goodwin continues to see improvements and encourages other age care providers to follow suit in order to increase quality of medication management for those in residential aged care.

Read more about Goodwin’s innovative on-site pharmacist.