Local experts invite community members to discuss preventing medication harm in Bendigo

Local experts invite community members to discuss preventing medication harm in Bendigo

MEDIA RELEASE

 

11 February 2019

 

Local experts invite community members to discuss preventing medication harm

 

Local health professionals will feature in a community event on February 26 at Bendigo TAFE at 3:30pm to talk avoiding problems like medication dependence.

 

In Greater Bendigo, 49 people died due to an overdose death involving pharmaceutical medications, accounting for more than 80 percent of total overdose deaths (58).[1]

 

This event is being hosted by not-for-profit organisation ScriptWise to discuss how to prevent medication harms in light of the roll-out of Victoria’s real-time prescription monitoring system, SafeScript.

 

The forum will feature a speech by a mother who lost her son to an accidental opioid overdose, an expert health professional panel and a question and answer session for community members.

 

SafeScript came online in Western Victoria in October and is due to be implemented across Victoria in April. The system provides doctors and pharmacists with access to prescription histories for certain high risk pain and sedative medications to enable safer clinical decisions.

 

In two months in Western Victoria, SafeScript identified almost 3,300 patients at risk of harm or overdose due to medication use.[2]

 

Regional pharmacist and panellist on the night, Toni Riley, says that all pharmacists should be actively using SafeScript to help identify patients at risk.

 

“It can be a difficult conversation to start, but pharmacists can help make sure patients are using their medications safely and getting appropriate treatment,” says Ms Riley.

 

“Our role as pharmacists isn’t to pass judgement but to get the conversation started and reduce the stigma around this medical condition,” says Ms Riley.

 

EVENT DETAILS

 

When: 26 February 2018, 3:30 – 5:00pm

Where: Bendigo TAFE, 23 Mundy St, Bendigo

RSVP: ScriptWise encourages community members to RSVP for the event here:

 

For more information and support please call the SafeScript Pharmaceutical Helpline on: 1800 737 233.

 

ENDS

 

 

For further information, high-resolution images, or interviews please contact: Lara Beissbarth, m: 0425 872 744 / e: lara@scriptwise.org.au

 

BACKGROUND INFORMATION

 

ABOUT SCRIPTWISE

 

ScriptWise is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to preventing prescription medication related harms through raising awareness, engagement and advocacy.

 

ScriptWise’s One Too Many initiative is being launched in support of the Victorian government’s implementation of its real-time prescription monitoring system, SafeScript.

 

ScriptWise’s One Too Many community initiative is dedicated to:

+ Raising awareness about the risks associated with long-term use of prescription opioids such as opioids or benzodiazepines

+ Ensuring Victorians understand the role and importance of SafeScript in saving lives across the State

+ Promoting preventative strategies and activities within communities

 

To find out more please visit: https://www.scriptwise.org.au/one-too-many

 

ABOUT SAFESCRIPT

 

SafeScript is a real-time prescription monitoring system the Victorian Government will be implementing in 2019. SafeScript aims to reduce the growing harms, including deaths, from high-risk prescription medicines such as opioids and benzodiazepines.

 

For more information visit: https://www.safescript.vic.gov.au/

 

 

[1] Coroners Prevention Unit, ‘Coroners Prevention Unit Data Summary. Victorian overdose deaths 2009-2015’, 16 March 2016

[2] Premier of Victoria, ‘Media release’. Accessed Jan 2019: https://www.premier.vic.gov.au/safescript-saving-lives-in-western-victoria/

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