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Are there pharmacists where we need them?

As the debate over community pharmacy, and pharmacist numbers continues, are existing pharmacies are in the right places, asks Noel Wicks? It seems that community pharmacy is doing a bit of soul-searching regarding the number of pharmacies there are. It’s an interesting debate and one that naturally seems to have polarised opinion. At the recent Sigma conference, chief pharmaceutical officer Keith Ridge suggested that the current Call to Action consultation could be used to help inform NHS England on this matter. It’s a sensible suggestion, I think, but I would hope that it wouldn’t be the end of the conversation, because the very reason for the consultation is to decide local strategies to help the commissioning of community pharmacy services.

Are you ready for research?

Research is necessary to drive pharmacy practice forward. All community pharmacists can get involved in some way.  

Will you make the grade?

How have community pharmacies found the General Pharmaceutical Council’s new inspection approach so far?

Reaching the people that others cannot reach...

A pub health check campaign found more than a quarter of men tested had high blood pressure  

Are generics too hard to get hold of?

Generic drug shortages are having a real impact on community pharmacies and patients.  

How pharmacies help keep new mums happy

Looking out for perinatal mental illness is just one area where pharmacy teams can help new parents.

Forward vision for eye health category

An ageing population means a growing number of eye-related problems, but a healthy diet and lifestyle has its benefits.

The importance of the Call to Action

NHS England’s Call to Action on community pharmacy is going to be extremely important says Alastair Buxton.  

A healthy nine months

Mums-to-be need reliable advice and reassurance during pregnancy, a role that pharmacy teams can help to fulfil.

One in 10 are not registered with a dentist

The oral health category has grown significantly, but there is still much more to do in communicating key messages.  

Get ahead on hair advice

People are more confident about asking for advice about hair loss and scalp problems  

Consumers deserve new rights, says government

Plans will give stronger protection to customers with cause to complain  

Pharmacy's message to NHS England?

P3 asks what are the key strengths of community pharmacy that policy makers should be aware of?

Practical issues with patient records

The quest for access to patients’ records may not be as rewarding as it may first seem, says Noel Wicks Patient records have yet again hit the headlines, as both Jeremy Hunt and Andrew Lansley acknowledge that the lack of access to records can act as a blockage to pharmacy service development. Indeed, achieving access to records has become a sort of holy grail for the past decade as community pharmacy tries to push forward with services. In certain parts of the country some patient information has already started to flow through pharmacies with local enhanced services and the like. For some time now we have been able to access a patients’ Emergency Care Summary in Scotland by contacting NHS 24, our version of NHS Direct.

Action stations - the Pharmacy Call to Action

NHS England’s Community Pharmacy Call to Action is the profession’s big chance to secure its future.   

We want to double HLP numbers every six months

Chief executive of the Royal Society for Public Health, Shirley Cramer CBE, is a strong supporter of pharmacy’s growing role in improving the public’s health.

Giving patients the best advice

Patients need to ask for advice, rather than self-diagnosing online and jumping to conclusions.  

Pain can be better managed

Up to 10 million people in Britain suffer pain regularly. How can community pharmacies help improve and manage their pain?

Fighting the flab

Can you do more to get customers signed up for a weight loss programme?

Seeing past the smoke

Public Health England has been encouraging smokers to pick up an NHS Quit Kit from their local pharmacy.
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