Raising awareness of prescription medicine addiction amongst practice managers

During the last AAPM & PMAANZ Conference, MediSecure held a social media competition, #RTPMsavelives. The primary objective of this campaign was not only to raises awareness of Australia’s first Real Time Prescription Monitoring tool, DrShop; but also to start the conversation on how practice managers and prescribing doctors can play pivotal role in preventing prescription medicine addiction and overdose in Australia. Since 1998, reported use of all illicit drugs combined has fallen in the general population. However, within this overall trend, there has been an increased misuse of over-the-counter and prescription drugs such as prescription opioids and benzodiazepines. (ref) We need a tool to stop prescription medicine addiction DrShop Real Time Prescription Monitoring tool was developed from the countless recommendations made by State Coroners across the country. Medical practitioners need access to a patient’s medicine history when prescribing medicines that are most vulnerable to misuse. “I made my pledge as part of MediSecure’s #RTPMsaveslives social media competition during the AAPM & PMAANZ Conference held in Hobart recently because as a practice manager, I feel it is absolutely crucial for us to support the implementation of a Real Time Prescription Monitoring tool in Australia. Such a tool will help to combat the rising rates of prescription medicine addiction and overdose fatalities. I am confident that a tool such as DrShop can help practices by protecting prescribing doctors against prescription medicine addiction and misuse, while improving clinical workflows and most importantly, improving patient outcomes.”  – Farah, Wallsend Medical Centre We would like to thank everyone who participated in this campaign. To register for DrShop, please click...

Australia faces a national prescription medicine addiction crisis

Prescription medicine addiction on the rise In recent years, we are seeing a surge in the number of Australians taking prescription drugs. This is leading to an increase in prescription medicine addiction. Evidence shows that opioid analgesics being prescribed to alleviate acute and chronic pain, as well as benzodiazepines to relieve stress and anxiety, are leading to addiction and in some tragic cases, death through overdose. While these medicines are relatively safe and are used for correct medicinal purposes by many Australians, when used chronically, both opioids and benzodiazepines can be addictive. In Victoria alone, newly released findings from the Coroners’ Court of Victoria highlighted how prescription drugs in general, and benzodiazepines in particular, consistently contribute to more deaths than either illicit drugs or alcohol. This continues to highlight the massive prescription medicine addiction problem we face and the urgency to introduce a Real Time Prescription Monitoring system....

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