Get involved in the campaign for community pharmacy’s future

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Get involved in the campaign for community pharmacy’s future

March 22, 2016

Community pharmacy contractors will have probably heard by now about a campaign for community pharmacy’s future. This is being organised in response to the Government’s plans for community pharmacy, including a 6% reduction in funding, which it announced last year. The plans could lead to some pharmacies needing to close and PSNC and the other national pharmacy organisations are very concerned about the impact on pharmacies and the patients they serve.

The campaign for community pharmacy is being coordinated by the national pharmacy organisations and you may have heard about the petitions, press coverage and supportyourlocalpharmacy website. The campaign is gathering momentum and this week we need your help!

The NPA has today released the results of their consumer research which forms the basis of a media push this week. The research has found that, as expected, other health services would come under more pressure if the Government proceeds with plans to cut investment in local pharmacies. A survey of 2,000 people shows:

  • Two in three people use a pharmacy at least once a month;
  • 36% of the adult population has received advice on how to get best use of their medicines in the past six months;
  • Two in five people would go their GP if it became more difficult to access their local pharmacy for the treatment of common conditions; and
  • Over a million people nationwide would go to A&E or other urgent care.

Everyone working in community pharmacy can get involved in the campaign in a number of ways, whether it is tweeting examples of the brilliant care you are giving, persuading patients to sign the Downing Street petition, or taking part in a local media interview. Here are some of the ways you can get involved this week:

Making your patients aware

Independent pharmacies will have received campaign packs from the NPA in wholesaler deliveries last week. You can use these to help promote the campaign in the pharmacy, asking patients to sign the Downing Street petition and directing them to the supportyourlocalpharmacy.org website. [Any pharmacies needing materials for this can download and print them from that website.] Don’t forget that in addition to the Downing Street petition you and your patients can also sign up to the e-petition at: tinyurl.com/supportyourlocalpharmacy.

It’s also a good idea to collect case studies that demonstrate where you have offered exceptional care to patients. These can be emailed to your LPC or campaign@psnc.org.uk. See our campaigning guidance for contractors for more help and information. Or, if you have been media trained and would like to get involved in local media interviews, please let your LPC know so they can coordinate locally.

Sharing the message on social media

The second @WePharmacists ’24 hours in pharmacy’ Twitter event will take place on Thursday 24th March. For 24 hours pharmacists and pharmacy technicians are invited to tweet their activities using the hashtag #pharmacy24. This year you are invited to share your pictures on Instagram and Facebook too. Don’t forget to link in to the campaign as well by using the hashtag #lovemypharmacy. Share anything you like to show how much of a positive difference you are making to your patients. Here are some draft tweet templates to get you started.

Also, in support of the #pharmacy24 event, the RPS is asking pharmacists to complete this short survey and tell them about key interventions you have undertaken and services you have provided during the last week that had a demonstrable impact on improved patient safety and care. The RPS want to use these stories and statistics to illustrate the valuable contribution of pharmacy to the NHS.

Whatever you can manage, this week is the time to really get behind the campaign. We would love to hear how you are getting on so please share your stories (and photos) via campaign@psnc.org.uk or on social media (using #lovemypharmacy).

Other ways you can help

  • Update your email signature: show your support by adding this promotional piece to your email signature.
  • Contact your MP: If you haven’t done so already, write a personalised letter to your MP setting out your concerns. Our key campaign messages will help you with this.


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