The Labour party formally launched its Health Mission’ and an accompanying paper which sets out plans to expand the use of community pharmacy on Monday (22 May).
In the accompanying paper the party mentioned how it will ‘Further expand the role of community pharmacy’. It said: “Whilst the Government has announced some sticking plaster proposals in this area, we will go further, accelerating the roll out of independent prescribing to establish a Community Pharmacist Prescribing Service covering a broad range of common conditions.”
It has also assured that the Labour will also cut unnecessary red tape to allow pharmacy technicians to step up to some roles, ensuring pharmacists can work to the top of their license and focus on their expertise in prescribing and medicines management, rather than repetitive dispensing processes.
It added: “Supported by greater digital interoperability, this will enable them to support GPs in the management of long-term conditions like hypertension and COPD and in tackling the serious issue of overprescribing, which is responsible for thousands of avoidable hospital admissions every year.”
Commenting, Malcolm Harrison Chief Executive of the CCA said: “We welcome further detail and are glad to see many of the proposals we have been campaigning on feature as part of Labour’s plans to expand the role of community pharmacy.
Independent Prescribing is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for change. Presently, only 5% of pharmacist are prescribers. Under current plans it will take far too long to achieve our ambition of 95% of community pharmacist being trained. With ambitious commissioning and an expanded training programme, community pharmacy has the potential to transform urgent care, public health, and long-term condition management across primary care.
Efforts to cut red tape and harness the full capacity of pharmacy teams are always welcome. The CCA has long called for the role of pharmacy technicians to be enhanced. This would free up pharmacist time to deliver NHS services, increasing capacity, patient access and primary care resilience”.