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In responses to the withdrawn amendment in the Health and Care Bill that was tabled by Lord Hunt, the Company Chemists’ Association (CCA) stated that the proposed amendment would have encouraged better use of the NHS’s fledgling Community Pharmacist Consultation Service (CPCS).

On 16 March, Lord Hunt tabled an amendment which would have obliged the DHSC to produce a self-care strategy. But the amendment was withdrawn and a minister said a ‘good deal’ of work was already underway on this agenda and noted that community pharmacies are already required to provide support for self-care.

The minister stated that the government was already exploring how to expand referrals to community pharmacies from other settings.

Malcolm Harrison, CCA chief executive, said: “We commend Lord Hunt for tabling this amendment to the Health and Care Bill. We know the amendment was later withdrawn as the government felt that it was doing enough on self-care.

“If taken forward, this amendment could have encouraged better use of the NHS’s fledgling Community Pharmacist Consultation Service (CPCS), which we fully support. CPCS has huge potential not only to alleviate pressures from GPs and A&E services, but also increase the clinical role of pharmacists. The CCA is also in support of PAGB’s proposal for the NHS to adopt a self-care strategy.”

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