PCNs and CCGs must consider impact of new roles, says NPA
NHS England should make local impact assessments a requirement before any pharmacist recruitment into primary care networks and clinical commissioning groups takes place, says the National Pharmacy Association.
The Additional Roles Reimbursement Scheme, which funds recruitment, is impacting on community pharmacy services in some areas and is one factor contributing to current workforce challenges, the Association believes.
To help tackle workforce shortages, the NPA says that PCNs and CCGs should consider the impact of the creation of new roles on all health care providers in an area, and on their ability to deliver their objectives on behalf of the NHS.
In a letter sent to Ed Waller, director of primary care for NHS England, on 22 December, the NPA has asked NHS England to “urgently” consider its proposals to tackle workforce shortages.
“The current workforce crisis across the United Kingdom is multifactorial. However, the overarching factor in England is the lack of NHS investment in community pharmacy services over the past six years,” says NPA chief executive Mark Lyonette.
“Despite this chronic underfunding, pharmacies continue to participate in commissioned services and invest in the training and development of pharmacists, technicians and the rest of the pharmacy team.”
As well as local impact assessments, NHSE&I has been asked to consider other measures to help alleviate workforce challenges. These include:
- Working with employer bodies to develop a comprehensive workforce plan that includes all community pharmacy roles and services.
- Reviewing services and roles within the PCN/CCG, and commission through community pharmacy where appropriate.
- Reviewing the reimbursement and remuneration model for community pharmacy services to ensure that the sector is sufficiently resourced to offer terms that are equivalent to those within Agenda for Change.