May 2022 newsletter
May 2022 Newsletter - Te Pānui Haratua 2022

Kia ora koutou

Since last year, Council has been implementing some changes to the way we communicate and engage. It’s part of a commitment we are making to ensuring we are connecting in a meaningful way with pharmacists, sector organisations, and other key stakeholders. We have been making some good progress too.

We delivered a responsive APC renewal process over March and April, with enquiries about MyRecert and APC applications dealt with in a timely way. Thank you to the pharmacists who completed their applications on time. This enabled us to focus resources on the 6% of applications that needed our help through the process.

To date (with more to come after the next Assessment Centre), we have issued 4,357 Annual Practising Certificates for the 2022-23 year. That’s up 1.2% (from 4,293) a year ago. Read more about how the 2022 APC process went.

We have been putting in place new engagement approaches to support our work. 

We have established the Māori and Health Equity Advisory Group (MHEAG), to provide independent advice to Council and Council operations on health outcome equity for Māori, Pacific People, and in time Rainbow and Disabled communities. We are very grateful to have a high calibre team supporting our work, who met formally for the first time at the end of March. The members of MHEAG are:

  • Sir John Clarke – independent member
  • Ripeka Evans – independent member
  • Richard Ngatai – independent member
  • Mahanga Maru – independent member
  • Kevin Pewhairangi – nominated member from Ngā Kaitiaki o Te Puna Rongoā o Aotearoa – The Māori Pharmacists’ Association
  • Diana Phone – nominated member from the Pacific Pharmacists’ Association
  • Whānau and consumer liaison member – to be appointed.

We are also establishing technical working and advisory groups to provide early-stage advice in our standards and process development work. Membership of the first group, focusing on the new Accreditation system, is in the final stages of being confirmed, and shortly we will be seeking to establish another to support the refresh of pharmacist competency standards.

Last week, we hosted the inaugural Quarterly Hui with sector organisations. Attended by the Māori, Pacific, Hospital, Clinical Advisory and Independent pharmacist membership organisations, Medsafe and the Pharmacy Guild, we discussed the Council’s role, regulatory functions, and work programme. 

These Quarterly Hui will support a shared understanding of work priorities across the sector so that Council is able to support the future needs of the pharmacy profession while working towards our goal of ensuring that all pharmacists are highly competent and professional in order to keep the people of Aotearoa safe. Sharing our work priorities and finding common ground to synergise our efforts is good common sense.

We are implementing some changes to our communications too.

You will see we have moved the newsletter online this month, to better support access to information. As part of this we are creating a new section on the website called “Regulatory Advice” where we will post regular articles to support your practice based on topical areas, and what we are seeing through enquiries and the experiences of pharmacists. The piece on “Telehealth” this month, follows the Ministry of Health publishing information on telehealth bulk funding for community pharmacies.

Please keep an eye out for some additional announcements and engagement opportunities in the coming weeks.

In May:

  • Council will be seeking expressions of interest to establish membership of the advisory and working group supporting development of refreshed pharmacist competence standards.
  • Researchers from Victoria and Otago Universities of Wellington will shortly conduct an online survey into the expansion of pharmacy services in community pharmacies and other primary health care settings. A similar survey was conducted in 2018. You can email [email protected] or [email protected] for more information in the interim.

In June:

  • Council will invite you to take part in a communications survey, to help inform how we develop our communications channels, so they are useful to you.
  • Council will be seeking expressions of interest to participate in focus groups to receive feedback on MyRecert.
  • Council will be seeking applications for another tranche of pharmacist/technician relief funding.

Continue to stay safe and take time to support your own wellbeing. The COVID-19 pharmacist relief workforce is still in place. Please enquire if you need some help to manage through COVID-related leave or absences.

On a final note, we would like to wish a very happy Eid Mubarak to Muslims in the pharmacy community.

Ngā mihi

Arthur Bauld (Chair) and Michael Pead (CEO)

2022 APC process – how did it go?

Some highlights from the recent APC process, including a snapshot of the pharmacists profession.

Regulatory advice: Telehealth 

Read about the importance of telehealth in your practice.

Proposed reclassification of nitrofurantoin 

Read the Council’s recent submission.

Pae Ora (Healthy Futures) Bill 

Read the Council’s recent submission.

Join us! New Māori and health equity role  

Council has a vacancy for a skilled senior advisor to support the development and operationalisation of our Māori and health equity programme. Applications close 5.00pm Tuesday 17 May.


Published 13 May 2022