"Prescriptions"

About: Princess Margaret Hospital for Children / Emergency Department

(as a parent/guardian),

First thank you Princess Margaret Hospital for the excellent service you provide in emergency.  Our last experience was very efficient and pleasant even though we had a bit of respiratory distress when my child arrived.  My bugbear is about the pharmacy prescription we were given.  In the end, because it wasn't filled incorrectly for a community pharmacy, I had to pay $50 rather than the $6.50, otherwise we were not going to get the right amount for the right timeline.

It is not just a problem with young doctors.  We have experienced this with all the doctors there in the clinics, senior ones too.  Could I suggest that there be a hospital wide training about how community pharmacies need the prescriptions written.  When a doctor needs to ring through for an authority, etc.  It is needed training, otherwise we are forced to go to the hospital pharmacy and that creates long wait times there.

Responses

Response from Victor Cheng, Executive Director, Health Service Managament

picture of Victor Cheng

Dear Ms J,

Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback on your recent experience at Princess Margaret Hospital (PMH). I am saddened it was not a positive experience all round, but appreciate your kind words for our Emergency Department.

I cannot ascertain specific details regarding the event from your post, but I will certainly attempt to answer some of your queries. As you may already be aware, within the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS), charges for medications prescribed to patients attending outpatient clinics or who have received a prescription through the Emergency Department are in accordance with the patient’s eligibility, and patients will receive a clinically appropriate quantity of new medications on discharge. All subsequent supplies of a discharge prescription (e.g. repeats) will be charged at the relevant co-payment or non-PBS price and the patients will be responsible for payment.

I can confirm that there was a significant amount of training in PBS prescription writing provided to doctors at PMH when PBS reform was rolled out across the hospital in 2014-2015, and that all WA public hospitals have undergone PBS reform, so that the writing of prescriptions to comply with PBS requirements is standard across the state. Our Pharmacy Department continues to provide targeted education to all doctors; however in some cases, refresher training needs to be completed. I can assure you that we are looking into this matter and aim to achieve a higher level of compliance. I hope that this has helped to allay your concerns; however if you wish to discuss this further, you can contact the Child and Family Engagement Service via PMHCLS@health.wa.gov.au or call 9340 8315, who will endeavour to assist you.

I hope your child is recovering well since seeing us at PMH and are well on their way to better health.

Yours sincerely

Dr Victor Cheng
Executive Director
Princess Margaret Hospital for Children

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