Pharmacy Collect: Are you ready for increased demand?

This week’s COVID-19 developments in response to the Omicron variant, including the updated Government guidance for the public, means there may be increased demand for Lateral Flow Device (LFD) test kits.

Community pharmacy contractors are therefore encouraged to continue to review stock levels and where there is space to store additional cartons of test kits within the pharmacy, consider placing additional orders to ensure their pharmacy teams can meet demand over the next couple of months.

While in most cases, contractors have been receiving their orders for test kits within 24 hours, the service level agreement (SLA) associated with delivery of test kits from Alliance Healthcare means deliveries can take up to three working days. As we approach the busy Christmas and New Year period, same or next day delivery should not be relied upon.

Contractors are reminded that their pharmacy teams can order one carton of test kits each day (Monday to Saturday). Where a pharmacy team experiences any supply issues obtaining test kits, in the first instance please contact Alliance Healthcare customer service support: customerservice@alliance-healthcare.co.uk or call 0330 100 0448.

Should pharmacy teams wish to discuss this further with the NHS Test and Trace, or think they may struggle to maintain stock availability, please email pharmacy.collect.queries@dhsc.gov.uk.

As part of their forward planning and stock review, contractors are advised to consider the Christmas and New Year Bank Holiday opening hours for Alliance Healthcare to ensure they are not left short of stock due to the planned closure periods and delivery schedules over the festive period.