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Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee

General News

LPC notches up key service win following innovative ‘Think Pharmacy’ event

Community pharmacy contractors in Manchester have been commissioned by a local clinical commissioning group (CCG) to deliver NHS flu vaccinations to at risk patients after LPCs in the region hosted a hugely successful engagement event with local commissioners.

Since the event, which was organised by a confederation of six LPCs in Greater Manchester, LPCs have reported a positive response from commissioners and Manchester LPC has secured a community pharmacy flu vaccination service for the rest of this year.

The service is intended to act as a 'mop up' service for this year and also to lay a foundation for future years.

The PGD enabling pharmacists to deliver the service was adopted using a toolkit supplied by the pharma industry giving the LPC an off the shelf solution for the CCG.

Funding has been secured through the CCG and pharmacists will be paid the same as GPs for administering the vaccine - £7.54.

The Think Pharmacy event, held on October 29th, brought together more than 300 people, including around 150 with commissioning responsibilities in both the existing and reformed NHS, to showcase the services that commnunity pharmacies can offer.

Through exhibition stands and keynote speakers, including PSNC chief executive Sue Sharpe, the event highlighted pharmacy’s role in three key areas:

  • Self care: supporting patients to look after themselves
  • Medicines optimisation: improving outcomes for patients taking medicines
  • Health and wellbeing: preventing illness with services and information through healthy living pharmacies

Aneet Kapoor, Chair, Manchester LPC, said:

"We’ve had some real successes and great outcomes from the Think Pharmacy event, with the highlight being the flu vaccination service that has now been signed off by the local CCG. The links we have made have also enabled us to get some of the service agreements we had in place with the local PCT secured until 2015, giving contractors some good medium-term service prospects.

But the work doesn’t stop here. Safeguarding local services in the long term is going to require ongoing efforts from LPCs to keep local commissioners engaged; as well as hard work from contractors in delivering services and capturing the data needed to prove the impact they are having.

Contractors also have a really important role to play in helping LPCs and other pharmacy representatives to build up good relationships with the new commissioners and show them what pharmacy can do.

Now that GPs are taking on their new roles, I would encourage pharmacists to take any informal opportunities to talk to their local GPs and build up a good rapport with them – you never know, the doctor next door to your surgery could end up with a key position in the new commissioning structures, and if you’ve got them on side, it will stand everyone in good stead for the future."

PSNC head of NHS services Alastair Buxton:

"The CCG-commissioned flu vaccination service is great news and shows just what can be achieved in this new commissioning environment, tough as it can be.

Health and wellbeing boards are likely to commission the most services from community pharmacy in the future and we heard at the LPC Conference this week about the positive conversations many LPCs have been having with them.

However, the experience in Manchester just goes to show that hard work put in to engaging with all new commissioners in the reformed NHS can certainly pay dividends."

Posted 4 December 2012

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