1. E-Health Services along with the Consolidation of Pharmacy chain brands into Banner Groups, is a growing trend in Australia
The Federal Government of Australia announced the expansion of Medicare i.e., subsidized telehealth services for all people in the country. Additionally, pharmacies partner with Tele consultation companies to enhance their service portfolio, thereby increasing the number of prescriptions and medication demand at their stores. In Australia, the banner/ franchise model is the preferred model as they are demonstrating better financial performance along with a significant market share. Furthermore, a major proportion of healthcare spending in Australia goes into purchasing Nutrition Health Supplements, Healthcare services, Toiletries, Hair & Skin Care, and other personal care products.
2. Slow Growth of 1.1% recorded in 2015-20, in terms No. of Pharmacy Stores in Australia as the Focus of Pharmacies lies in the growth of their Per Store Revenue
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The franchise model became quite popular in the historical period with new chains adopting to this model for faster store expansion. Major Chains are getting acquired by Big Banner Groups, ensuring Geographical presence and a wide Service Portfolio. Additionally, the Medicare Scheme of Australia has provided Medicines to Australians at comparatively low prices than in other countries. Hence, continuous demand for medicines. Moreover, customer loyalty schemes, wide product assortments, special offers and discounts & additional services like click & collect have collectively helped organized chains in maintaining their superiority in the market. Further, on average, every person visits a community pharmacy 18 times each year, in metropolitan, rural, and remote locations in Australia.
3. Legal Pre-Conditions and Pharmacists Licensing Costs, Acts & Guidelines for Distribution and Marketing of Drugs in Australia
Australia has a two-tiered drug regulating system. One of them is high-risk medications. Prescription drugs, most over-the-counter (OTC) medications and some complementary medicines must all be registered on the ARTG. The lower-risk medications are the alternative option. Some OTC and complementary medications include pre-approved, low-risk components and make restricted claims that can be published on the ARTG. Moreover, medication marketing applications must be authorized by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA).
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The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) controls the import and supply of pharmaceuticals in Australia in line with the Therapeutic Goods Act 1989 and the Therapeutic Goods Regulations 1990. Furthermore, an Authorized Prescriber (AP) can prescribe a medicine to an individual patient in care that has not been approved by the TGA.
4. Lack of Medical Facilities and Multiple Issues Faced by Pharmacists which haven’t been resolved were Major Issues in Pharmacy Retail in Australia
The formation of franchises resulted in huge competition among the top 3-4 chains in the country, and due to this, the pharmacy chains focusing on acquiring independent chains created problems for small independent outlets. Additionally, health outcome delivery for rural and remote Australian communities is challenged by the unequal distribution of the pharmacy workforce. High staff turnover rates, reduced pharmacist numbers, and reliance on temporary staff have placed great strain on both state health services and rural community pharmacies. Furthermore, in the export sector the country, Australia accounts for ~2% of the global pharmaceutical market and imports more than 90% of medicines. At times there may not be enough of a specific medicine in the Australian marketplace, leading to potential weaknesses in supply.
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