What the hell is going on in Fenian St?

Last week I heard rumours that there had been two pharmacist resignations from the PSI Council.  I emailed the PSI asking them to confirm or deny and to date I have not had any reply on this matter.  I recognize that they might well have confidentiality issues and that they couldn’t possibly comment.

So today I decided to attend the public session of the PSI Council meeting.  As soon as the meeting started I quickly confirmed in my own mind who the two resigning members were. Apologies were made for those not present and all the other members had name tags in front of their seats. There was no mention nor any name tags for the presumably now ex-members of the Council.

Towards the end of the meeting there was a very bland sounding item on the agenda.   “Policy and Procedure for the use of Executive Sessions.”  From the discussion on this I got a very negative feeling about relations between the executive and some of the Council.   My overall impression was that all was not well in this house of cards.

Then this evening I heard more rumours of another pharmacist resigning from the Council.  I must stress that all these are rumours.  There has been no comment, official or otherwise from the PSI and neither has there been any comment that I’m aware from from the pharmacists concerned.  And therein lies part of the problem.

If the rumours are untrue I think that the PSI should issue a statement removing any doubt.  If they are true then we need to know what the hell is going on.   The PSI have introduced many guidelines and directives.  They have taken a lot of money in fees from pharmacists and pharmacies to fund their enforcement.  We need to know how it is being spent.    They have reserves of nearly €11 million and it is difficult to see what they need such a large reserve for.  They are accountable to the Minister for Health but I don’t see him doing very much for now.

Today I prepared an article for June’s edition of Irish Pharmacist but events of the past few hours have rendered it out of date already.  This is always an issue when dealing with publication dates so far in advance.  I had titled the article “Strange days Indeed.”  Little did I realise how strange today would turn out.




Possible shape of things to come

This is already happening in the US.  There is no reason why it can’t happen here.  We’re accessible and able to do it.  This would help take some of the strain off GP’s and hospital out patients departments.  All it takes is somebody to pay for it.


Thanks Ultan for the link.


€2.50 per item and GP visit cards for under 5’s

Minister Reilly thought that €0.50 per item was a bad idea and wanted to abolish it just as soon as he got into government.  Instead he put it up to €1.50.

€1.50 cost medical card holders €105M, €2.50 will cost €175M, an extra €75 M.

How much will the under 5’s medical card cost,  estimated to be €40M to €1B.

GP visit cards for under 5’s are being paid for by medical card holders.

Fine Gael don’t care!

Labour do you care?

Fianna Fáil will huff and puff but do nothing.

Shinners are you listening!  Methinks it’s time to dig out the decommissioned weapons.

Electronic cigarettes. Looks like I may have been wrong

I posted some time ago that I thought that the PSI were wrong to say that we should not stock the electronic cigs. In the light of this and other reports it seems that they may have had the right idea but for the wrong reasons.
Mea culpa, mea cupla, mea a corpra cupla.

Most of the companies making them are owned by big cigarette manufacturers. And you know that we can trust them. They are looking to replace their dying market for cigarettes with many new generations of e-cigarette addicts. And if you cannot ban them how about taxing them like cigarettes? A whole new source of money to be put into James Reilly’s constituency.

The future is here

This blog piece comes from JayPee who is listed on the side of the page. It is about how the AMA (American Medical Association), their equivalent of the IMO are trying to block attempts to widen the pharmacists role. For the moment the GMS won’t pay for these things here so for now they are not going to happen to any great extent. But the time will come when the GMS will start to see the value inherent in them and will want to bring them in. Then will we see the IMO kicking up?

I’ll be posting my Irish Pharmacist pieces soon. Just been up to my tonsils lately.