PV supports Society's care home campaign

Pharmacy Voice has added its support to the Royal Pharmaceutical Society's campaign calling for closer cooperation between care homes and community pharmacies. It represents "an unmissable opportunity", according to chief executive Rob Darracott.

He called on the Government to recognise the value of the two care providers working together closely. In particular, he emphasised that the specific benefits community pharmacies bring in support of care homes should not be downplayed alongside what can be offered by an independently engaged pharmacist.

“Community pharmacies working closely with care homes can provide a myriad of benefits – both in terms of clinical outcomes and efficient use of resources. The unique offering that wider pharmacy teams offer goes beyond just dispensing medicines. Community pharmacists and their teams have already demonstrated the value they can add by training care home staff and overseeing compliance with various regulatory requirements in various successful trials across the country."

There are many examples of best practice to be found of community pharmacists providing vital and much needed help to the care homes in their community. However, inconsistent local commissioning and a constant shift in priorities from successive Governments has made it hard to build momentum, he said.

In order to ensure this potential is realised, Pharmacy Voice has called for:

  • A commissioning framework that takes full advantage of the existing infrastructure and skills found in community pharmacy in delivering services across all care settings, including in care homes
  • Recognition of the unique position of community pharmacies – with clinical and practical expertise underpinned by a fuller picture of patient medication history and lifestyle – in delivering value for money and joined-up services for those living in care homes
  • An understanding that such potential is limited significantly by a 6.1 per cent reduction in community pharmacy budgets, as proposed by the Department of Health in its letter of December 17, 2015.

Community pharmacies working closely with care homes can provide a myriad of benefits

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