Pharmacy heart checks service pilot announced

Pharmacy heart checks service pilot announced

September 2, 2019

NHS England and NHS Improvement (NHSE&I) have issued a press release to announce the trialling of heart checks in pharmacies to the general public. Community pharmacy teams may have seen this morning’s national press coverage of the announcement.

The development of a model for detecting undiagnosed cardiovascular disease (CVD) was agreed as part of the five-year Community Pharmacy Contractual Framework (CPCF) agreement. It is just one of a range of new services that will be piloted and introduced over the course of the five years to support the delivery of the NHS Long Term Plan.

Planning is underway for a CVD pilot in community pharmacy. Funded by the Pharmacy Integration Fund (PhIF), this is expected to involve community pharmacies offering on-the-spot checks of patients’ blood pressure and where appropriate, referral to treatment within Primary Care Networks (PCNs), complementing the CVD service specification in the new GP PCN contract. Subject to the pilot being successful, it is expected that this will lead, through the annual contract reviews, to a fully funded national service to start in 2021/22.

Other CPCF service development pilots have been mapped out in our CPCF service development grid.

Commenting on the announcement, Alastair Buxton, Director of NHS Services at PSNC said:

“The cardiovascular disease pilot in pharmacies is still in the planning stages, but it represents an important example of community pharmacy’s wider service ambitions and we are keen to see its commencement as soon as possible. The 5-year CPCF agreement between DHSC, NHSE&I and PSNC provides a great opportunity for us to pilot and roll out a range of new services. By making a success of pilots such as this, the sector will become more integrated with and valuable to the rest of the NHS, in particular supporting collaborative working across Primary Care Networks.”

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