PSNC has published a set of service proposals that describe how pharmacy services could develop within the context of government drives for efficiency.
The proposals include the introduction of a care package, which would see repeat dispensing becoming a default option where medicines are needed on a long-term basis, patient registration at pharmacies, and pharmacies offering enhanced medicines optimisation services.
Pharmacies would also offer inhaler technique checks and advice routinely, undertake targeted prescription interventions, support for patients after discharge from hospital and offer minor ailments and emergency supply services.
The document comes as part of the discussions with the NHS following the December 17 open letter in which the government announced a number of plans for community pharmacy including a £170m reduction in funding. The government highlighted the need for efficiencies, but also stated that it wanted to develop a clinically-focussed community pharmacy service.
PSNC has aspired to develop a clinically focused community pharmacy service since 2004 when it agreed what was intended to be a dynamic framework for service development, but this has not taken up by the government in subsequent years. The December letter lacked detail on its proposals so PSNC’s service proposals are intended to fill that gap, showing how pharmacy can offer value and cost savings for the NHS as well as meeting the government’s professed ambitions for community pharmacy services.
The proposals have been presented to the Department of Health and the NHS but PSNC has not yet received any feedback.
PSNC will undertake further development work on the proposals subject to the response it receives from DH and NHS England. The proposals are set out in three phases, in recognition of the need to allow the wider NHS and community pharmacy to adopt them in a controlled manner that also allows time for other enablers, such as IT, to be put in place.