Community Pharmacist Consultation Service

Community Pharmacist Consultation Service

The NHS Community Pharmacist Consultation Service (CPCS) launched on 29th October 2019 as an Advanced Service, initially taking referrals to community pharmacy from NHS 111, with referrals from General Practice being launched in November 2020.

The CPCS will relieve pressure on the wider NHS by connecting patients with community pharmacy, which should be their first port of call and can deliver a swift, convenient and effective service to meet their needs.

National Documents which include:

  • Service Specification
  • Toolkit
  • Self-assessment framework

Can be downloaded from the NHSBSA website.

CPCS – GP Pathway (GPCPCS)

Since this new pathway was launched, we have been working as part of a GP CPCS working group comprised of members from Bolton LPC, GMLPC, CHL and NHSE/I who meet regularly to plan the rollout of the service across GM.

The group have been working closely with Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership (GMHSCP) and wider Governance Boards, and would now like to update contractors on progress and provide a brief overview of the work that’s been going on behind the scenes to increase uptake and engagement with the service.

General Practice Engagement 

We are pleased to announce a number of practices have confirmed they will start to make referrals to pharmacies under the GP CPCS service.

GPCPCS is now live at: 

  • Swan Lane Medical Centre.
  • Dr Uddin & Partners:
  • Kearsley Medical Centre
  • Dr Jeyam & Jesus
  • The Dunstan Partnership

The following practices have confirmed go-live dates for September / October:

September 28th 2021

  • Stonehill Medical Centre

October 4th 2021

  • Dalefield Surgery
  • Spring House Surgery
  • Cornerstone Surgery
  • Drs Karim & James-Authe
  • Heaton Medical Centre

We are working with a number of other practices and will notify you when go-live dates are set.

GM System Engagement

Extensive system engagement has taken place with oversight from GMHSCP to support the implementation of the service. This includes engagement with the following key stakeholders;

  • Clinical Directors
  • Senior Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) representatives through Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership (GMHSCP)
  • GP Provider Board
  • Medicines Optimisation Teams
  • Primary Care Networks
  • Clinical Commissioning Groups

Following this high level engagement, we are pleased to confirm that funding has now been secured for EMIS practices to use the Patient Access Connect Module, and for non-EMIS practices to use the web-based solution, PharmRefer.

Further details on deployment of these IT systems for your local practices and all Community Pharmacies will be communicated in due course.

Annex F – GP CPCS referral pathway £300 engagement and setup payment

Contractors registered to provide the CPCS can claim a £300 engagement and setup payment if they undertake a range of actions to get ready for rolling out the referral pathway in their area by 30th June 2021. The requirements are detailed in Annex F of the updated service specification and claims need to be made via the NHSBSA’s Manage Your Service portal by 5th July 2021.

Whilst not all GP practices will be operating this service by 30th June 2021 contractors can still claim the £300 setup fee if they complete the checklist found in Annex F.

Local Process and other supporting information

The local protocol to be used for referrals to and from the GP practice has been standardised across Greater Manchester to make it as straight forward for pharmacies and locums. The processes detailed below has been agreed across Greater Manchester.

You can start to prepare for the local rollout by:

  1. Complete Annex F
  2. Reading the updated NHS CPCS Toolkit for pharmacy staff so you understand more about how the pathway will operate
  3. Reading the GP CPCS Toolkit for GP and PCN Teams to understand the GP element of the referral pathway
  4. Reading the updated service specification
  5. Briefing relevant staff on the changes to CPCS
  6. Ensuring pharmacists that will provide the service read the updated toolkit and service specification;
  7. Review & complete the PSNC ‘GP referral pathway to the CPCS – Action plan template for pharmacy teams’
  8. Refer to the CPCS SOP Template

Please note: Pharmacies which are already registered to provide CPCS do not need to re-register to receive referrals from GPs, as this is an extension to the existing Advanced service.

Service Resources

CPCS Patient and Clinical Resources


We are also pleased to confirm that the Virtual Outcomes NHS Community Pharmacist Consultation Service (CPCS) training modules are now available to all pharmacy teams.

These include:

  • NHS 111 CPCS pharmacy team training
  • GP referral CPCS pharmacy team training
  • GP surgery training
  • Online consultations
  • Pharmacist clinical consultations
  • PharmOutcomes support video

To access the training please click here. You will be asked to provide your pharmacy F code to access the modules.

We also encourage contractors to attend one of the RPS CPCS workshops. These events will support clinical assessment skills which will be utilised in consultations with patients referred as part of the CPCS.

Please note: Any pharmacies that have participated in the GP CPCS pilot, will have the relevant local information on the referral pathway to be able to update their CPCS Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) to include the GP referral pathway. Other contractors could start to update their SOP, but some of the locally determined information on referral pathways will not be known until discussions on this have happened within the PCN.

Information for PCN and General Practice Colleagues

We understand that a number of contractors and community pharmacy PCN leads are being approached by general practices and PCNs to ask for an update on the current status of GP CPCS rollout.

We would not encourage you to proactively engage in conversations at this stage, however, if you are approached by a general practice or PCN colleague, we have produced the following resource to support you with responding to any queries you receive.

The GP CPCS Working group (comprised of reps from Bolton & GM LPCs, CHL, and GMHSCP) is currently in discussion with GMHSCP to define the deployment plan for GM, specifically including the IT referral mechanism and ways of working in making referrals.

We understand that concerns and requests for updates have been made to LPCs and we will endeavour to keep you updated on progress on the GM deployment plans.

If you are a PCN or GP practice interested in adopting GP CPCS in your area, please email and a member of the GP CPCS working group will be in touch with you

CPCS – NHS 111 Pathway

Documents to support the NHS111 Pathway which have been developed by the LPC and PSNC can be downloaded here: