By NPA head of communications Stephen Fishwick

When you’re ‘pitching’ community pharmacy solutions to commissioners, policymakers, patients, politicians and others, pharmacy’s ‘access story’ is often a good place to start. Where else in the health service can you simply walk in off the street and get access to professional healthcare advice in a matter of minutes, usually without an appointment?

There’s also a great story to tell on prevention, public health and ‘making every contact count’. In fact, there is so much we can say – and do say – about the benefits of pharmacy that our messages can become rather cluttered if we’re not careful.

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We have received a letter from one of the local GP practices bemoaning the fact that we have been referring patients to them who needed to be seen urgently, a pharmacist writes

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By Richard Thomas, editor, Pharmacy Magazine.

Christmas and the New Year is traditionally a time of hope and renewal, but, as the prescriptions pile up, it is hard for pharmacists to feel any sense of optimism.

We await the Government’s long-term plan for the NHS, but in the meantime the funding cuts are really taking their toll in the form of squeezed cashflow, job losses, reduced services, shelved investments and poor morale.

 

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By Ross Ferguson

Something that caught the eye of many colleagues in England was the announcement that the Scottish Government was providing dedicated funding for the Additional Cost of Teaching (ACT) of experiential learning (EL) for pharmacy undergraduates for 2018-19.

The hope is that this fantastic and pragmatic initiative will not only reimburse the costs involved, but that it will help to expand and enhance the quality of EL in hospital, community and primary care.

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By Richard Thomas, editor, Pharmacy Magazine

The health secretary has thrown his weight behind the modèle français for community pharmacy and made ill health prevention his driving ambition.

This isn't the first time the Government has spoken of the need to focus on prevention rather than cure. Will things be different this time around?

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