Harm Reduction Victoria

Pharmacists

Pharmacists

PAMS are a Victorian, state-wide telephone service funded by the Department of Health.

PAMS are funded to work on any pharmacotherapy, client-related issue or concern. We provide short-term case management until the primary problem or issue of concern has been resolved. Please note, we do not work with patients who are on other S8 opioids unless they wish to begin a pharmacotherapy program.

PAMS are available from Monday to Friday – 10AM to 6PM & can be contacted on Ph: 1800 443 844 (free call, state-wide). A message bank is available to take calls after hours or if we are on the phone at the time of your call. We endeavour to get back to all callers within 24 hours during week days and 48 hours over the week-end. Most calls are returned within the hour during business hours.

Feel free to contact us yourself, or if you have a client you would like to refer, just give the client our number, or get the client’s permission to give us their number & we can contact the client directly.

If you are a pharmacist currently dispensing pharmacotherapy, PAMS can assist with:​

  • negotiation of payment plans for clients who have accrued a dispensing fee debt, (upon request, this can be a written agreement that is negotiated and drawn up by PAMS staff and faxed to the pharmacy)
  • negotiation of pharmacotherapy treatment agreements (useful for non-compliant clients who may benefit from ‘one last chance’)
  • referrals for consumers requiring limited one-off financial assistance when a payment plan is not an option (we can’t guarantee financial assistance is always available)
  • explanations of pharmacotherapy policy and guidelines (dispensing regulations, take-away doses, drug pharmacology etc.)
  • accessing alternative providers if service is terminated
  • resolution of client complaints and grievances, (provision of impartial mediation with the aim of negotiating win-win outcomes that suit all parties)
  • advice to pharmacists and pharmacy staff on promoting appropriate client behaviour in the pharmacy
  • support and/or debriefing for pharmacists who have experienced inappropriate behaviour from a pharmacotherapy client(s)
  • feedback and advice on the formulation or review of a pharmacotherapy ‘client contract’ in community pharmacy
  • assistance to arrange a temporary transfer (for example a client is planning an inter-state holiday and needs to dose elsewhere for a certain period of time)
  • assistance for consumers who’s prescriber is unavailable and the script has expired
  • liaison with the Victorian Department of Justice for clients recently released from prison and who do not have the 30 day post release subsidy documentation
  • assistance to source a new pharmacotherapy prescriber if the current treatment plan appears non-collaborative
  • Any other problem – if we can’t help we hopefully know how best to get the problem resolved.

The goal of the PAMS Service is to keep pharmacotherapy consumers on the program (providing this is what they want) to ensure that pharmacotherapy providers are happy to continue providing a service. In some circumstances, it is not appropriate for a client to continue to dose at a specific pharmacy and the best possible outcome is for PAMS to match the client up with a new provider as soon as possible.

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Pharmacist Resources & Links