Pharmacists don't have the right tools
The right tools and resources are not yet in place to enable pharmacists to play a greater role in delivering self-care advice and medicines to patients, according to a new report from Sanofi.
Currently, 33 per cent of pharmacists working for independent or small pharmacy chains do not have the resources to support patients with self-care alongside their other roles, says the report, entitled ‘Driving a self-care revolution in the UK’.
To tackle this, close to half (45 per cent) of the 250 pharmacists surveyed believe greater emphasis by primary care practitioners on the benefits of self-care would leave them in a better place to support patients. Similarly, 42 per cent believe that recruiting more pharmacists would improve their capacity to deliver self-care advice.
Calls to review switching process
Access to medicines for pharmacists was also raised. Close to a quarter (23 per cent) of the pharmacists say they do not have a broad enough range of OTC medicines to meet patients’ needs. This figure rises to 68 per cent in those pharmacists qualified for more than 15 years.
Because of this, 70 per cent of pharmacists say they would support a review of the MHRA switching process to determine if improvements can be made that would deliver a better range of OTC medicines for self-care.
Not fit for purpose
The research also says that pharmacist reimbursement needs to evolve as self-care becomes more critical. Only a quarter (27 per cent) of pharmacists believe the current approach to reimbursement reflects the value provided by pharmacists in providing self-care, while over a third of pharmacists (35 per cent) believe the CPCS is not fit for purpose.