RPS respond to doubling of funding for GP pilot

The funding for clinical pharmacists in general practice pilot has doubled from £15m to £31m, NHS England has announced.

This will increase the number of pharmacists taking part from the original 250 to 403.

Commenting on the news, Royal Pharmaceutical Society English Pharmacy Board chair Sandra Gidley, said: “It’s a real vote of confidence in the pharmacy profession and a huge step towards the integration of pharmacists into primary care.”

She added: “Having pharmacists in GP practices will be also be key to better communication with community pharmacists which will benefit patients as well as encouraging greater liaison and use of the community pharmacy network.”

Celebrities back Stay Well This Winter

Celebrities including chef Ainsley Harriot, former Strictly judge Arlene Phillips and Eastenders matriarch Barbara Windsor have pledged their support for the Stay Well This Winter campaign.

The joint initiative between NHS England and Public Health England hopes to take the pressure off frontline services by educating the public.

Windsor said: “It’s the simplest things that we sometimes forget, and when remembered, they can make all the difference!

“The Stay Well This Winter campaign is a great way of reminding people about the little things they can do to make sure they’re protecting themselves as the cold weather sets in, whether that’s staying warm, stocking up on prescription medicines or checking in on friends and neighbours to make sure they are keeping well”.

New guidance on bladder and bowel problems published

New guidance to help improve services and lives for patients living with bladder and bowel problems has been published by NHS England.

Problems with the bladder affect more than 14 million people in the UK, about 6.5 million have bowel problems while 900,000 children and young people reportedly suffer from bladder and bowel dysfunction.

The new directions encourage greater partnership between health and social care as described in the NHS Five Year Forward View.

Jane Cummings, Chief Nursing Officer for England, said: “This new guidance will provide the health and care system with a clear framework to help support the improvement of services, ensuring the best and most appropriate care is provided.

“We hope that the guidance will reassure people experiencing this often distressing problem that it’s not something they need to remain silent about.”

Pharmacy Voice responds to claims patients have been inappropriately influenced

Pharmacy Voice has responded to recent claims that patients have been inappropriately influenced by healthcare professionals when opting where to receive their prescriptions and flu jabs.

The assertions prompted the General Pharmaceutical Council, the General Medical Council and the Pharmaceutical Society of Northern Ireland to issue a joint statement.

Rob Darracott, chief executive of Pharmacy Voice, said: “Pharmacy Voice welcomes the joint statement...  The statement makes clear that pharmacy professionals and doctors have a duty to support informed decision making by patients and ensure that they do not inappropriately influence patients’ choices.

“We particularly welcome the fact that the statement emphasises that there is a clear process whereby concerns can be referred to the regulators and may result in an investigation if it is deemed that their standards may not have been met by individual health professionals.”