500,000 patients set to receive expert advice from pharmacists

CREDIT: This story was first seen in the Gazette

GP Surgeries across South Gloucestershire are set to benefit from the input and advice of clinical pharmacists as part of a new scheme, the Gazette reports.

Nearly 500,000 patients across South Gloucestershire, North Somerset and Bristol will be able to receive expert advice thanks to the scheme, which will feature 46 different practices across the region.

The scheme, jointly funded by NHS England and GP Practices, follows a successful pilot in 2015 and aims to free up GPs’ time and allow them to see patients with more complex conditions.

The clinical pharmacists will offer input on medicine issues, those taking multiple medications and will work alongside GPs and nurses to help manage patient’s long-term conditions.

The practices in South Gloucestershire include Wellington Road Family Practice in Yate and Streamside Surgery in Thornbury.

Rebecca Hennessy, GP at Northville Family Practice, said:  “The new positions will provide additional resource to practices across the region.

“The service will benefit both patients, who will be able to be seen more quickly, and GPs who will be able to see those who need more complex advice and treatment.”

The funding comes from NHS England’s General Practice Forward View which has pledged over £100m to deliver an extra 1,500 pharmacists in general practice by 2020/21.

Ruth Taylor, chief executive of One Care Ltd who led the bid, said: “It is fantastic news for the Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire area and will have a positive impact on general practice.

“Everyone is aware of the pressure GPs are currently under, and the arrival of clinical pharmacists across 46 practices will have a noticeable benefit for patients across the area.

“The success of the bid has been made possible by collaboration between all of the practices and the use of digital innovation.”

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