PSA phar­ma­cist wage alert

Pharmacy Daily - - Front Page -

THE Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal So­ci­ety of Aus­tralia has slammed a de­ci­sion by the Fair Work Com­mis­sion to “stag­nate the min­i­mum safety net pay for com­mu­nity phar­ma­cists,” with PSA Na­tional Pres­i­dent Chris Free­man say­ing the rul­ing was a “com­pletely in­ad­e­quate re­flec­tion of the com­plex work that phar­ma­cists do”.

The Com­mis­sion has de­cided the cur­rent base phar­macy award rate of just over $27 per hour should re­main in place, with Free­man say­ing the fig­ure “does not re­flect the pro­fes­sion’s sig­nif­i­cant train­ing, ex­per­tise and ac­count­abil­ity”.

How­ever Free­man has also urged that in the con­text of the broader phar­macy sec­tor, any in­crease in the award rate should be met with a cor­re­spond­ing boost to fund­ing into the phar­macy sec­tor to make pay rises af­ford­able.

“We urge all phar­ma­cists to dis­cuss fair re­mu­ner­a­tion with their em­ploy­ers when ac­cept­ing em­ploy­ment and at reg­u­lar in­ter­vals,” the PSA Na­tional Pres­i­dent said.

He said the is­sue of fair pay for phar­ma­cists went far be­yond the min­i­mum wage.

“Phar­ma­cists need to be ap­pro­pri­ately re­mu­ner­ated for their sig­nif­i­cant train­ing as health­care pro­fes­sion­als with the most ex­per­tise in the qual­ity use of medicines,” Free­man added.

He noted that the re­cent PSA case put to the Fair Work Com­mis­sion fo­cused on the change in scope of prac­tice for the pro­fes­sion.

“Our health sys­tem has seen a sig­nif­i­cant change in the com­plex­ity of health prob­lems faced by pa­tients, and phar­ma­cists are now prac­tis­ing at a deeper and more in­tense level.

“The cur­rent di­vi­sion of base phar­ma­cist wage cat­e­gories are sim­ply an­ti­quated,” Free­man said.

“Phar­ma­cists should be paid a fair day’s wage...with­out which, our pro­fes­sion will never meet its full po­ten­tial, pro­mul­gat­ing the pro­fes­sional dis­sat­is­fac­tion and dis­en­fran­chise­ment ex­pe­ri­enced by so many,” he con­cluded.

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