Community pharmacy debated by MPs

Community pharmacy debated by MPs

October 4, 2019

This week (2 October) MPs debated the role of community pharmacy in Parliament, and MPs across multiple political parties spoke passionately about the pharmacy sector.

The debated was hosted by Holly Lynch, Labour MP for Halifax, who spoke of her past experiences working in a community pharmacy, as well as pharmacy closures, medicines shortages, and the five-year Community Pharmacy Contractual Framework.

Other notable contributions include:

  • Tim Farron, Liberal Democrat MP for Westmorland and Lonsdale, who called for an essential community pharmacy scheme to support pharmacies in rural areas.
  • Rachael Maskell, Labour MP for York Central, who questioned how the impact of the five-year deal will be measured, particularly on independent contractors.
  • Kevin Barron, Labour MP for Rother Valley and Chair of the All-Party Pharmacy Group, who spoke about the new Community Pharmacist Consultation Service (CPCS) and other future pharmacy service developments.

Jo Churchill, MP for Bury St Edmunds and the Minister responsible for pharmacy, was also present. She began by noting that she had been able to meet with the sector and PSNC last week at the LPC Conference (27 September). She said this had: “underlined to me again what an essential part of the NHS the pharmacy is, working day in and day out on improving outcomes for patients and for the community.”

The Minister also discussed the consultation on community pharmacy drug reimbursement reforms, as well as the five-year deal, noting the introduction of the Community Pharmacist Consultation Service (CPCS), which will begin on 29 October.

On the five-year deal, the Minister said:

“The deal is the beginning of a programme to transform the sector and to see community pharmacies play a much expanded role in the delivery of health and care across prevention, urgent care and medicine safety. Those new arrangements will support the pharmacy team to utilise all its extensive clinical expertise, further developing new roles and providing the community with the knowledge, skills and support to prevent ill health, manage minor conditions and stay happy and healthy for longer.”

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