The CCA clarified for The Sun what the ‘Pharmacy First’ service meant for their readers. You can read the article here.
The Company Chemists Association warmly welcomes today’s announcement of new investment in community pharmacy, and the plans for a new pharmacy-based common conditions service. We hope that this new service will mean that patients will be able to access the care they need for common illnesses like sore throats, earaches, and urinary tract infections, without needing a GP appointment.
The £645m of additional funding over two years will also provide the support needed to enable pharmacies to continue to deliver valuable blood pressure checks for people at risk of heart attacks and strokes, and it will allow pharmacies to start to provide the recently announced contraceptive service for women.
We also welcome the commitment to invest in the digital infrastructure required to allow pharmacies to deliver these, and future services, to help improve GP access.
The CCA has long been calling for more investment in the sector and a Pharmacy First service for England. Last year, we set out how pharmacies can free up more than 42m appointments from General Practice. We hope that the NHS aim for 7 million people to get their prescribed medicines via a pharmacy, without a GP appointment. This is a first step in the journey towards our ambition, that the NHS this funding should support is the first step on this journey.
Malcolm Harrison, the Chief Executive of the CCA said:
“We welcome today’s news that the government and the NHS will empower community pharmacies to do more for patients. We see this as a real vote of confidence for the future profession and the community pharmacy sector.
Funding for the contraception service, the Blood Pressure service and for the Common Conditions service is critical to enable delivery. As soon as this funding can be released patients will be able to see an immediate benefit.
The initiatives here are a crucial first step in realising the true potential of the community pharmacy sector.“