Today's announcement an important first step in effective, efficient use of one of Ontario's vital healthcare providers, says the Ontario Pharmacists' Association.
TORONTO, Oct. 9, 2012 /CNW/ - The Ontario Pharmacists' Association (OPA) is extremely pleased with the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care's proclamation today of Ontario pharmacists' expanded scope of practice.
"The announcement is a critical first step in enabling pharmacists to deliver efficient, effective care for the patients we serve," said Billy Cheung, Chair of the OPA Board of Directors at the Ministry announcement which took place this morning at the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Toronto. "We applaud Premier Dalton McGuinty and the Honourable Deb Matthews, Minster of Health and Long-Term Care, for their leadership and support of pharmacists' expanded scope of practice. We would also like to acknowledge the considerable work of our regulatory body, the Ontario College of Pharmacists. Together, we will ensure Ontarians receive top quality healthcare that is easily accessible."
As Ontario's medication management experts, pharmacists are ready and willing to take on expanded scope of practice activities. It begins with the introduction of pharmacist-administered flu vaccinations as part of the provinces' Universal Influenza Immunization Program this fall.
Flu immunizations are simply the beginning said OPA's Chief Executive Officer Dennis Darby. "By utilizing pharmacists to provide flu shots, to refill prescriptions, to adjust medications for patients with diabetes, or even prescribe drugs to help them stop smoking, we are substantially contributing to a sustainable, publicly funded health care system. In collaboration with physicians and nurse practitioners, pharmacists can now do more to help patients manage their conditions by providing the best medication therapy."
While OPA's focus is on assisting the province's pharmacists to implement the new menu of scope activities, the Association believes there are still many areas where pharmacists can help realize improved patient outcomes and significant savings for the healthcare system including ordering and interpreting laboratory tests and prescribing and counseling for minor ailments.
"There are many more ways pharmacists can contribute to improved patient outcomes," noted Darby. "Daily, pharmacists interact with many of Ontario's most vulnerable populations. The OPA is currently engaging in research to identify the significance and value of the impact pharmacists can have on the care provided to seniors and those with chronic conditions. Our goal is to show how expanding the role of the pharmacist can drive even greater value and sustainability for Ontario's healthcare system."
About the Ontario Pharmacists' Association
The Ontario Pharmacists' Association is the professional association that represents the views and interests of more than 13,600 pharmacists and pharmacists-in-training across the province. The Association works to inspire excellence in the profession and practice of pharmacy, and to promote wellness for patients.
SOURCE: Ontario Pharmacists' Association
For further information:
Phone: 416-441-0788 x 4236