Pharmacists key to promoting safe use of oral anticoagulants

20 June 2013

With increased public awareness about newer oral anticoagulants, and large numbers of people still taking warfarin, NPS MedicineWise has launched a new educational activity for pharmacists to help guide their conversations with patients.

The latest Pharmacy Practice Review Oral anticoagulants: Promoting safe use is now available online.

NPS MedicineWise clinical adviser Dr Philippa Binns says the Pharmacy Practice Review helps provide clarity around the newer oral anticoagulants, putting them into context with warfarin.

“People who take anticoagulants often rely on their pharmacist to help them take the medicine correctly, so this is an interactive and useful way to keep up to-date with the latest evidence,” says Dr Binns.

The new Pharmacy Practice Review provides access to resources to help guide patient counselling, including:

  • Medicinewise tips for pharmacists to share with patients
  • A checklist to guide ongoing counselling
  • The new NPS MedicineWise Warfarin Dose Tracker (to help patients keep track of their dose, INR results and record any changes)
  • A Living well with warfarin patient fact sheet

As part of the Pharmacy Practice Review, pharmacists create individualised patient management plans to guide ongoing counselling for people using anticoagulants.

The review provides immediate individual results compared to best practice and aggregate results for peer comparison. An expert commentary on the results helps pharmacists to implement best practice.

After completing the activity pharmacists will be able to:

  • explain the purpose of and differences between the oral anticoagulants
  • outline the potential adverse effects of oral anticoagulants (including the newer agents)
  • assess for adverse effects and identify who needs referral, and
  • discuss the need for individualised clinical monitoring with patients and explain how often monitoring is required.

With the CPD year ending on 30 September 2013 pharmacists can earn up to 40% of their CPD requirements. Completion of the Pharmacy Practice Review earns 8 hours of Group 2 CPD (or 16 CPD credits) and participation is free at www.nps.org.au/pharmacy_practice_reviews.

Other available topics for Pharmacy Practice Reviews include CVD risk and type 2 diabetes.



ENDS

Independent, evidence-based and not-for-profit, NPS MedicineWise enables better decisions about medicines and medical tests. We are funded by the Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing.

Media enquiries: Stephanie Childs on 02 8217 8667, 0419 618 365 or schilds@nps.org.au or Erin Jardine on (02) 8217 8733 or ejardine@nps.org.au