HPS Pharmacies’ Lecture Series Program is an integral part of the professional services provided to our sites. This annual program consists of a minimum of twelve lectures, at least one of which becomes available at the beginning of every month and others throughout the year.

The topics are selected from those suggested by feedback and surveys from our clients; the lectures are then written by one of our 130 pharmacists who may have a general interest, or work, in the specialist field covered by that topic, and then shared with all our pharmacists to present to their interested clients.

The diverse schedule for the 2013 HPS Pharmacies Lecture Series Program can be seen below.

Your HPS Pharmacies pharmacist will assist in developing a lecture program suitable for your facility; if a lecture is required on an issue or topic not covered by the current programme, HPS’ pharmacists can draw on our comprehensive library of lectures which has been built up from previous series, or request a specialist pharmacist to prepare a lecture on the new topic.

Initially written for an audience of nurses, the lectures are often delivered as an informal presentation during handover, with a handout included. However each lecture can easily be adapted to suit a variety of audiences and group sizes. Different presentation styles and needs can be catered for such as in-depth discussions or PowerPoint presentations. Our pharmacists are also actively involved in community education programs such as, pulmonary and cardiac rehabilitation, and adapt lectures and develop materials to suit participants without a medical background.

All topics are medication related, but may approach medication from different perspectives such as discussion of:

  • The uses and adverse effects of a single drug, e.g. infliximab (Remicade);
  • The uses and adverse effects of a class or group of drugs, e.g. beta blockers;
  • Medications used to treat a particular condition or range of symptoms, e.g. diabetes or cardiac arrhythmia;
  • Drug administration practices, e.g. crushing of medications; and
  • Drug monitoring practices, e.g. antibiotic stewardship or warfarin.

Each edition of Newsline includes a Lecture Series article based on a lecture selected from the current program. A précis of one lecture from the 2012 series, Treatment of Eye Problems is included in this edition on the following page.

Many nurses record attendance at these lectures as part of their portfolio of evidence for Continuing Professional Development, and starting in 2013, each lecture will include a self-assessment tool. Self-assessment will consist of five multiple choice questions, initially with answers included on the handout, and will progress to being accessed via our website. A link to our survey will also assist with the further development of lectures through feedback
and suggestions.

For further information on how to take advantage of our comprehensive lecture series, please talk to your HPS Pharmacies pharmacist or contact the Regional Operations Manager in your state (details are listed on the inside back cover of this edition of Newsline).

Table 1. 2013 Lecture Series Program Timetable.

Available From Topic Title Topic Summary
1st January Vitamins Overview of commonly used vitamin supplements
1st February Crushing of Tablets Which medications should not be crushed and why
1st March Dementia Medications General overview, doses, side effects, and medications which can aggravate dementia
1st April Drugs Used in Cardiac Failure General overview, rationale for use and place in guidelines
1st May Drug Treatment of Gastro Oesophageal Reflux Disease (GORD) Medications, rationale for use, and side effects
1st June Systemic Antifungals In particular those administered parenterally
1st July Warfarin Versus the Newer Oral Anticoagulants Comparison of all oral anticoagulants, differences, and rationale for use
1st August Update on Antidepressants Newer medication versus older medications, side effects, and rationale for use
1st September Safe Handling of Cytotoxics Disposal of contaminated waste, dealing with spills, handling risks and how to manage them
1st October Iron Infusions Parenteral use versus oral use, what is available, comparisons, and administration issues
1st November Transdermal Pain Preparations General overview, comparisons, administration issues, conversion issues between transdermal preparations and from oral to transdermal
1st December Antimicrobial Stewardship: New Generation Cephalosporins What to choose – similarities and differences, use in empirical treatment of febrile neutropenia

Additional lectures which will become available throughout the year:

  • Tenecteplase (Metalyse) – use and administration issues
  • Infliximab (Remicade) – use and administration issues
  • Bevacizumab (Avastin) – use and administration issues
  • Oxycodone/Naloxone combinations (Targin) – rational use, side effects
  • Special Access Scheme medications and regulations – what does this mean? How is administration affected?
  • Ketamine infusion – use and administration issues
  • New insulins – comparison between newer insulins and between those and older insulins, administration issues, and availability
  • Update on medications used in Parkinson’s disease – new medication/combinations, rationale for use and potential problems
  • Medications used in renal failure, and medications used specifically to treat issues arising from renal failure