The mobilisation of the service has demonstrated a real "can do" mentality on behalf of community pharmacy and Local Pharmaceutical Committees, with support from colleagues at NHS England.
To ensure that this good impression and momentum is maintained throughout the duration of the service and beyond please could you note the following important aspects of the service:
- You will have noted from the SLA and FAQ's that the contractor has a duty to ensure that pharmacists involved in the provision of the service have relevant knowledge and are appropriately trained in the operation of the service. Please note that this requirement extends to locums employed in pharmacies. This also means that locums must have access to PharmOutcomes (PO). This will enable them to continue to monitor PO for 111 referrals and also record all medication supplied via this service.
- Secondly, if a situation should arise whereby your pharmacy has established that the provision of an emergency supply is appropriate (paragraph 3.1 of the SLA refers) but your pharmacy does not hold the necessary stock the pharmacy must make every effort to identify another pharmacy participating in the scheme, which does hold the stock, and signpost the patient to that pharmacy. If it does not prove possible to locate a pharmacy which does hold the stock then the patient should be advised to make an appointment with their own GP. The patient MUST not be referred back to NHS 111 for further advice/information. You must ensure that you do what ever is neccessary to help the patient in the same way you would if they had walked in to the pharmacy asking for help.