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New book to help pharmacists

New book to help pharmacists

Established pharmacists as well as those studying to gain their qualifications will benefit from a new book which focuses on pharmaceutical care in New Zealand.

>From Clinical Pharmacy to Pharmaceutical Care, edited by Associate Professor Patrick Ball and Professor John Shaw from The University of Auckland and Dr Andrew Davey from the University of South Australia, is the first book to look specifically at pharmacy practice in this country.

Professor Shaw, co-editor and head of the School of Pharmacy at The University of Auckland's Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences, says it is important to have a book specifically for New Zealand, written by leading New Zealand clinical pharmacists because pharmaceutical care is not identical in all countries.

"Drug names are different in other countries, or their availability differs, or there are slightly different processes in accessing services. We believe that by using New Zealand authors and presenting cases with a New Zealand focus, we can make the material more relevant and accessible to our pharmacists."

Pharmaceutical care, a key theme of the book, is a new philosophy of pharmacy practice where the pharmacist works with patients, their caregivers and other health professionals to ensure that patients get the maximum benefit and least risk from the medicines they are taking (including self-medication and complementary therapies).

"Pharmaceutical care moves away from the concept of the pharmacist as simply dispenser or distributor of medicines to a more patient-centred focus. We believe that this is what patients and funding agencies ultimately want from pharmacy services."

Professor Shaw says it will take some time for this philosophy to become fully understood and accepted, and the book will provide students with the knowledge and skills to progressively assume the new roles.

>From Clinical Pharmacy to Pharmaceutical Care looks at patient care with the use of clinical cases, which include hospitalisation of the patient and their return to their community.

The cases presented focus on primary diagnosis and all are based upon real patients. Each case finishes with a care plan for the ongoing support of the patient with their medication.

The material is planned to suit graduate pharmacists studying for further qualifications but should also be of interest to undergraduate students and practitioners working towards a pharmaceutical care based model of practice.

Professor Shaw and his fellow editors intend to update and supplement the material in the book regularly.

"Our aim is to provide an ongoing resource to support pharmaceutical care practice in New Zealand."

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