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Umesh Modi is a chartered accountant, and Pamini Jatheeskumar is a chartered certified accountant at Silver Levene...
  Don Lavoie is alcohol programme manager at Public Health England and Gul Root is lead...
Don Lavoie is alcohol programme manager at Public Health England and Gul Root is lead pharmacist, Health and Wellbeing Directorate, Public Health England
More inWhite Papers  

LCA2April 6 2016

A briefing document for councillors, senior local council officers and commissioners has been published setting out the role of community pharmacy in public health.

The document, ‘The community pharmacy offer for improving the public’s health - A briefing for local government and health and wellbeing boards’, describes community pharmacy’s increasing role in public health.

It also sets out councils’ roles and duties and uses a number of case studies to illustrate the sorts of collaborative approaches being taken by pharmacies working with councils and other community partners. Among the key messages raised in the document are the priorities expected as well as facts and figures relating to pharmacies and their involvement in public health.

To commission community pharmacy effectively, the document urges local authorities and health and wellbeing boards to:

  • ask local people for their views on current community pharmacy services, how they could be expanded and/or improved;
  • engage with community pharmacies as key providers or potential providers of local public health services;
  • include the pharmacy local professional networks (LPN) chair and local pharmaceutical committee (LPC) in stakeholder engagement activity to help assess the health needs of the local population and to review and update the pharmaceutical needs assessment (PNA) and the joint health and wellbeing strategy;
  • engage with LPCs, NHS England, CCGs and PHE to design and develop locally commissioned pharmacy services to meet the public health needs of the local population;
  • review existing commissioning arrangements to ensure that they are locally appropriate, of sufficient quality and effectiveness.

Published by the Local Government Association and Public Health England, and endorsed by Pharmacy Voice, the document says all three bodies “believe that pharmacy teams should be fully integrated into local primary care networks, playing an appropriate and important role in improving people’s health.

“Patients and the public trust their pharmacy teams and build a special relationship with them due to frequent contact, so that people are able to be honest with them about their lifestyle choices, for example the number of cigarettes they smoke.”

It points out that community pharmacies are an important community resource, often being the public’s first point of contact with a healthcare professional.

“Pharmacists and their teams already have a track record in delivering public health services, such as promoting and supporting good sexual health, helping people to stop smoking and reducing substance misuse within communities,” it says.
In addition, pharmacies can support independent living, ‘make every contact count’ by using every interaction as an opportunity for a health promoting intervention.

It also notes the role community pharmacies have in supporting the other local businesses: “A community pharmacy is one of the core businesses that can make a difference between a viable high street and one that is failing commercially, thereby sustaining communities, providing investment, employment and training, and building social capital.”

Local authorities and health and wellbeing boards are asked to take into account the potential contribution community pharmacy can make when policy and commissioning decisions are made. “The new models of care being piloted across the country with the guidance of NHS England provide a real opportunity for pharmacy to be involved in tackling and reducing the impact of chronic diseases,” it adds.

LCA1

Link:

LGA & PHE: ‘The community pharmacy offer for improving the public’s health - A briefing for local government and health and wellbeing boards’ document

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