Conference delegates considered the example of a hypothetical H. pylori service being commissioned in their locality for a fee of £22 per patient.

What are the issues to consider before deciding whether to get involved? ‘It’s not a case of jumping right in. There are a lot of things to consider before you decide,’ said Ms Lau.

Balancing issues such as whether training and equipment would be paid for, the impact of the extra work on the pharmacy team and whether the team will be able to deliver, against the fee, the likely volume of referrals and the detail of the service level agreement are all important, said pharmacists at the conference.

Numark has a profit calculator tool, to help with decisions like this, said Ms Lau. Ask yourself: ‘Am I going to make any money from doing this? What is the competition doing? If others are doing this and you don’t, then will your perception on the high street be lowered?’ she asked.

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