Dr Justin Turner received a Bachelor of Pharmacy and a Masters of Clinical Pharmacy from University of South Australia, and a PhD from Monash University. Justin worked as a clinical pharmacist in hospitals across South Australia and the United Kingdom for several years before starting a community pharmacy in regional South Australia. In this role, he worked closely with local family physicians and Residential Aged Care Facilities. Working closely with older people in the community and in care facilities enhanced his passion for optimizing medication management in vulnerable older people.
Justin’s research interests focus on optimizing the safe and effective use of medications in older people. His PhD focused on polypharmacy and unnecessary or potentially inappropriate medication use in older people with cancer. Inappropriate medications include medications where the potential for harm outweighs the potential for benefit. He has conducted qualitative research investigating the barriers and enablers to reducing unnecessary or inappropriate medications in aged care facilities, from the perspectives of key stakeholders: family physicians, nurses, pharmacists and residents and their representatives.
Inappropriate medication use is highly prevalent in older people. One-in-four Canadian seniors is currently taking a potentially inappropriate medication. As a postdoctoral research fellow at the Centre de recherche Institut universitaire de gériatrie de Montréal, Justin is coordinating a pragmatic cohort randomised controlled trial in primary care, with the aim of reducing unnecessary or inappropriate medication use in Canadian seniors. The patient-centered process of reducing medications after consideration of treatment goals, benefits and risks, and medical ethics is called deprescribing. Justin is the Assistant Director of Canadian Deprescribing Network (CaDeN).