AMA Queensland Survey Report graded an ‘F’ with 24 false statements

23 May 2022

On behalf of patients, The Pharmacy Guild of Australia, Queensland Branch, has corrected the Queensland AMA’s (AMAQ) Survey Report and scored it an (F) for failure because it contains 24 incorrect and inaccurate statements.

Queensland Branch President Chris Owen said upon review of the AMAQ report that the Pharmacy Guild simply couldn’t let the numerous falsehoods and fabrications stand. Once again, in the interest of facts not fiction, the Guild has been forced to publicly correct the report for the benefit of patients.

“From its inception, UTIPP-Q has provided much needed high-quality health services to women across Queensland. Women who would otherwise wait weeks, in pain, for an appointment with a general practitioner, can have their uncomplicated UTI treated privately in a community pharmacy,” Mr. Owen said.

“Commentary in The Australian Newspaper regarding the UTIPP-Q indicates that the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) evaluation report is “overwhelming supportive of the trial” and found that pharmacists followed the Australian Therapeutic Guidelines protocol and “delivered safe and appropriate care when prescribing the antibiotics,” Mr. Owen said.

“In striking contrast with comments from the QUT evaluation report, the AMAQ persists in putting forward hearsay allegations and unsubstantiated claims with no clinical evidence to falsely scare patients – patients expect better from the AMAQ.

“Patients deserve to know the truth – not be fed mistruths and misinformation from the AMAQ and RACGP.

“The ongoing and deliberate denigration of community pharmacists by the AMAQ and RACGP is pathetic and frankly totally unprofessional. We continue to work collaboratively with all health practitioners at a grassroots level, but the AMAQ and RACGP seem to enjoy spreading misinformation and fear.

“The claim of fragmented care is incorrect. There is no fragmentation of care if a woman cannot access a general practitioner to receive health care in the first instance,” Mr. Owen said.

“The claim of men being treated via the UTI pilot is incorrect; the claims of misdiagnoses of sexually transmitted infections, pregnancy and cancerous conditions are also false. There is no clinical evidence or data to support their outrageous accusations.

“The claims of expanding the UTI pilot throughout North Queensland is also incorrect; it's already running statewide,” Mr. Owen said. “The UTIPP-Q and the North Queensland Pharmacy Scope of Practice Pilot are two distinct Pilots, and it is deceitful to interconnect the two,” Mr. Owen said.

“In allowing community pharmacists to practice to their full scope, the Queensland Government is on the same trajectory as many other OECD countries, including Canada, New Zealand and the United Kingdom, who are global leaders in this area, said Mr. Owen.

“The Community Pharmacy North Queensland Scope of Practice Pilot and the UTI pilot are supported by all major political parties and patients, given the extensive international evidence that it’s safe and effective.

“Recent consumer research found that over 74% of Queenslanders living in North Queensland support the pilot. While the same research found that over one-third of respondents in North Queensland could not access a general practitioner within a week and instead had to seek alternative treatment via already overcrowded emergency departments.”

According to the Queensland University of Technology UTIPP-Q Pilot evaluation report leaked to The Australian Newspaper on 16 May;

  • 6,751 women in Queensland had their UTI symptoms identified and managed by their community pharmacist.
  • 87% of patients reported that their UTI symptoms had resolved after antibiotic treatment.
  • The remaining 13% who did not have symptom resolution, had sought further guidance and care from another healthcare professional (including their GP) – as per the Pilot protocols. Urine tests were only conducted in 63% of cases, of those who did not receive a urine test, the vast majority (77%) went onto receive another antibiotic treatment.
  • Just four patients presented to the emergency department. Pharmacists follow the empiric treatment of UTIs as recommended in the Australian Therapeutic Guidelines. These Guidelines underpin how all clinicians, including GPs, should practice. All four patients’ cases were reviewed by a general practitioner and a sexual health practitioner and in each case the pharmacist followed the treatment protocol.

“The Guild looks forward to the release of the QUT evaluation report, given we understand that Queensland Health has had the report for months, said Chris Owen.”

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Page last updated on: 14 November 2022