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[Issue No. 165] PSS E-Bulletin June 2020

As our country moves into phase 2 and adapts to the socioeconomic effects of COVID-19, our profession holds an ever more relevant role in public education. Observing important practices such as infection control and social distancing as well as staying updated with accurate information can help protect our community and dampen the effects from a resurgence.

Over the last few months, PSS members have come together to develop useful resources for both healthcare professionals and the public. This bulletin section is a compilation of all of that effort. The COVID-19 education materials are consolidated for ease of sharing with the public or your respective teams. 

This is a new innovative grant from the Community Pharmacy Section, FIP - National Pharmacy Champions for Change. For members who are keen, members can submit directly to FIP. 

In view of COVID-19 and postponement of doctors’ appointments at public healthcare institutions (PHI), the PSS Public Education Chapter understands that patients may not know the channels available to top up their chronic medications.

Hence, an educational poster in both English and Mandarin versions was produced to educate and remind the public on the importance of adhering to chronic disease treatment and guide patients on how to order their chronic medications from home and get them delivered to their doorsteps.

The Singapore Pharmacy Council (SPC) Pharmacist’s Pledge Affirmation Ceremony held on 22 May 2020 was ground-breaking in the mode of delivery- via Zoom video conferencing due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. Nonetheless, it was a happy occasion for the recently registered pharmacists to celebrate their achievement.

Resolution of medication related problems for patients on transition of care from hospital to primary care; and reduction of prescribing near misses through medication clinic in Toa Payoh polyclinic.

Deprescribing refers to the action of discontinuation, substitution or tapering of inappropriate medications and is part of the continuum of appropriate prescribing for patients. The goal of deprescribing is to improve patient outcomes through reducing pill burden and potentially harmful medications which are no longer useful.

In Singapore, older adults are at risk of polypharmacy and the benefits of appropriate deprescribing in this patient population is relatively well known among healthcare professionals. However, there are multiple barriers to the practice, one of them being the uncertainty of how patients and their caregivers would react to healthcare professionals when we offer to deprescribe. Knowledge of decision-making preferences among Singapore older adults and their caregivers is needed to facilitate confidence in deprescribing.

Nomination closes on 31st July 2020