The British Society of Pharmacy Sleep Services (BSPSS) has been established to help community pharmacists ensure patients receive help with sleep disorders and are signposted to other healthcare professionals where necessary.
BSPSS president community pharmacist Gareth Evans says the society will promote community pharmacy as a trusted source of advice and information, and create a patient-centric network of pharmacy-based sleep services. He believes pharmacists are currently an under-utilised resource. “With the appropriate training, community pharmacists can triage patients seeking advice on a wide range of sleep-related problems, including insomnia, snoring, sleep apnoea and even narcolepsy,” he says.
The BSPSS is inviting community pharmacists to complete a quiz examining current knowledge of sleep-related problems to identify gaps and guide development of training materials. Log your response at www.bspss.org
GSK has launched Let’s treat it right, a global campaign designed to bridge gaps in consumer knowledge of how best to self care. The campaign, which is backed by the International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) aims to support responsible use of everyday medicines by focusing on four key themes: right need, dose, storage and disposal.
Resources are available online, and will be shared on social media, says GSK. Initially, the campaign will focus on responsible use of pain medicines, but will extend to other areas of everyday health over the next year. GSK says that over the past two years, internet searches for ‘self care’ and ‘treat at home’ have risen by 33 per cent and 58 per cent respectively. However, only 20 per cent of Europeans feel confident about managing their own health. www.letstreatitright.com
Growing at 7.3 per cent – way above the 1.3 per cent growth in the toothpaste market as a whole – Sensodyne is getting a further boost with a high profile ad campaign running on TV, web-based video advertising and YouTube this summer.
Supporting the launch of Sensodyne Repair & Protect Deep Repair in particular, the campaign places dental experts in the spotlight to highlight the product’s benefits. Formulated with aerosil silica, the toothpaste promotes occlusion within dental tubules for a long lasting solution to sensitivity with twice-daily use, says maker GSK.
Nelsons is hoping to drive growth across its Rescue brand as well as the stress and sleep categories overall with its latest launch: a new natural wellbeing collection comprising products in a variety of formats.
The company says the collection answers unmet consumer demand for natural support in preparing for sleep, balancing mood and focusing the mind. There are two new products for day (Rescue Balance & Positivity Capsules and Fresh & Focused Capsules) and three for night (Rescue Dream Balm, Peaceful Night Capsules and Peaceful Night Duo). Nelsons is promoting the launch with its biggest ever consumer marketing campaign for the brand.
HRA Pharma is one step further in its mission to empower women with accessible self care as it launches Hana, a progestogen-only oral contraceptive pill containing 75mcg desogestrel.
Available in one-month (rrp £9.95) and three-month (rrp £21.95) packs, Hana can be bought over the counter following a consultation with a pharmacist. The reclassification of desogestrel from POM to P recognises the increasing role pharmacy plays in primary care, says the company.
It has developed a package of training to support pharmacist consultations and help establish the suitability of Hana for each woman. Resources and information can be found at www.hanapharmacist.co.uk.
Dears Pharmacy has partnered with TestCard to offer a UTI Test and Treat service. The service costs £12 for two tests and a mobile app that turns a smartphone camera into a clinical grade scanner. Along with a postcard test kit, this provides immediate results, says TestCard. “Our aim is to make testing fast, accurate, and accessible for all,” says Dears’ managing director and superintendent pharmacist Mahyar Nickkho-Amiry. “Our app provides clear results and next steps with no confusing medical jargon. A Dears pharmacist, or other healthcare professional, can then use the detailed analysis to decide how best to treat.” TestCard’s UTI Test Kit is CE marked use as a medical device and is as accurate as a urine test performed in a clinic, says the company. For details, see www.testcard.com
Offering women a new option in contraceptive choice, Lovima is Maxwellia’s pharmacy (P) brand of desogestrel 75mcg contraceptive pill.
“Lovima puts pharmacy at the frontline of providing important contraception advice and choice,” says the company. It is indicated for women of childbearing age, following a pharmacist consultation to determine suitability. A blood pressure check is not necessary, says Maxwellia, although it can be offered as part of a general health check. Lovima can be taken by women currently using other contraceptive methods, as first supply or when switching from other hormonal contraception, including the combination pill and emergency contraception. RRP is £14.99 for 28 pills and £29.99 for 84. www.lovima.com
A new study by GSK Consumer Healthcare and Ipsos has highlighted the need to improve public awareness of the positive impact good oral care has on overall health.
The research found that only 29 per cent of people in the UK know that good oral health can support a healthier pregnancy; only 40 per cent understand its impact on blood sugar and diabetes, and just 45 per cent know that it can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. GSK’s Jonathan Workman says: “As one of the world’s largest providers of specialist oral health, it is our responsibility to support healthcare professionals across dentistry and pharmacy professions to educate consumers on the wider benefits of oral healthcare, outside of the mouth.”
As such, the company is advising pharmacy teams to visit www.gskhealthpartner.com for further information.
Many healthcare professionals (HCPs), including pharmacists, are concerned about the public’s ability to self care. According to new research from Perrigo, 44 per cent of HCPs don’t believe the UK can look after itself.
Farah Ali, chief superintendent pharmacist at Perrigo’s Warman-Freed Learning Pharmacy, says: “It’s easy for patients to compartmentalise minor health issues and to view them in isolation… Pharmacists could gently engage with a simple question around their self care practices. This opens up a dialogue and encourages the patients to think.”
Although UK consumers are curious, their self care views still lag behind those of other European countries, adds Perrigo UK&I senior marketing director Laure de Brauer.