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LPC secures funding for second mental health pharmacy service pilot

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LPC secures funding for second mental health pharmacy service pilot

Exclusive: Community Pharmacy Lincolnshire has secured funding for a second pilot of a mental health pharmacy service, the data of which will be presented to Community Pharmacy England with a view to getting the service commissioned.

Community Pharmacy Lincolnshire’s chief officer Tracey Latham-Green told Independent Community Pharmacist the “small amount of funding”, which comes on the back of the first trial which saw 37 pharmacy staff in eight pharmacies help people experiencing suicidal thoughts or domestic abuse, will support the training of more staff.

The first pilot was funded by the National Institute for Health and Care Research. Community Pharmacy Lincolnshire has been asked to clarify where funding for the second trial came from.

During the pilot, known as the Lifeguard Pharmacy Project, staff were taught how to talk to people in distress and signpost those who were at risk of harm from themselves or someone else. Staff who took part were known as ‘lifeguards.’

Latham-Green said the second pilot, which will take place in sites in Boston and Lincoln as well as a new site on the east coast of England which is yet to be confirmed, will give her LPC “a better understanding” of how the service “could work on a larger scale” after feedback from the first pilot has been gathered.

“This second pilot stage is about streamlining the service to ensure scale-ability and monitoring how it will fit in with new services such as Pharmacy First, hypertension and contraception and the potential conflicting demands on private spaces in community pharmacies,” she said, revealing 10 to 12 ‘lifeguards’ will take part in the latest pilot which will run until September.

Latham-Green, who said her LPC is awaiting publication of three academic papers, added: “Once we have the data from the stage two pilot, we will be liaising with Community Pharmacy England regarding potential future service commissioning.”

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