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Five-year Community Pharmacy Contractual Framework breaks new ground

The Department of Health and Social Care has published The Community Pharmacy Contractual Framework for 2019/20 to 2023/24: supporting delivery for the NHS Long Term Plan jointly with the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee, and NHS England and NHS Improvement.

This agreement translates commitments in the NHS Long Term Plan into a five-year contractual framework, setting out an ambitious programme of work to help more people stay well within the community.  The framework sets out the introduction of new clinical services to develop and expand the role of community pharmacy across three key areas: prevention, urgent care and medicines safety, with community pharmacies further integrated as part of local primary care networks in the way they deliver services.

In summary, the deal:

  • Describes new services which will immediately be offered through community pharmacy as well as a programme to develop evidence-based additions to those services. Foremost amongst the new services is the new national NHS Community Pharmacist Consultation Service, connecting patients who have a minor illness with a community pharmacy which should rightly be their first port of call. This begins with referrals from NHS 111 with piloting of expansion to referrals from GP practices, 111 online, UTCs and A+E, and appropriately relieving pressure elsewhere in the urgent care system; 
  • Underlines the critical role of community pharmacy as an agent of improved public health and prevention, embedded in the local community. To underpin this, terms of service will be updated so that by April 2020 being a Level 1 HLP will become an essential requirement for community pharmacy contractors;
  • Recognises that an expanded service role is dependent on action to release pharmacist capacity from existing work. The deal rationalises existing services and commits all parties to action which will maximise the opportunities of automation and developments in information technology and skill mix, to deliver efficiencies in dispensing and services that release pharmacist time;
  • Continues to prioritise quality in community pharmacy and to promote medicines safety and optimisation. The current programme of Medicines Use Reviews in community pharmacy will be phased out by the end of 2020/21 as the new programme of structured medication reviews is delivered via PCNs; 
  • Underlines the necessity of protecting access to local community pharmacies through a Pharmacy Access Scheme

This agreement will come into effect from October 2019 and run through to March 2024.


Contact

Medicines management team

(Click above link)

If you have any queries please do not hesitate to contact the team on:

Tel.: 01473 770249

Email: iesccg.medsmanagement@nhs.net

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