The Federal Government has announced a partnership with the peak body representing pharmacists designed to increase their access to clinical records and the sharing of drug-dispensing information through My Health Record.

According to Health Minister Greg Hunt, the partnership with the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia, which represents Australia’s 29,000 pharmacists, will drive the healthcare cohort’s My Health Record uptake.

“This partnership will help PSA to increase the number of pharmacists working in all practice settings registered, able to view and automatically upload medicines information to My Health Record,” Hunt said.

PSA will review, update and develop professional guidelines, training and implementation tools for digital health in pharmacy practice.

About 5.2 million Australians currently have a My Health Record, and 12.8 million prescription and dispense records have been uploaded to the system.

My Health Record also provides pharmacists with access to clinically relevant information from other healthcare providers, including hospital discharge summaries, GP shared health summaries, and consumer-entered information about over-the-counter medications and other supplements.

PSA National President Dr Shane Jackson said digital information-sharing would improve the service provided by pharmacists, particularly during transitions of care.

“My Health Record will provide access to verifiable clinical information such as a shared health summary, which is really useful when you’re sitting down with a patient for a MedsCheck or Home Medication Review. The benefit to patients is safer and more effective care,” Jackson said.

“Pharmacists will be able to understand what’s happened to the patient in hospital, what changes may have been made, and what they need to do to follow up. My Health Record really shines a light on a patient’s health status so you can tailor their care.”

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