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Financial Incentives for pharmacists in care

19 December 2014

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Financial incentives are to be provided to healthcare providers wishing to bring pharmacists into practices.

The initiative is part of a £200m to kickstart primary care initiatives due to be announced on Friday.

The news comes following reports by the Royal Pharmacy Society (RPS) and The Nuffield trust outlining the essential role that pharmacists could have in improving efficiency within primary care.

Rick Stern, chief executive of NHS Alliance said: “When it is so hard to employ doctors in some parts of the country, [practices] really ought to be looking at this wealth of well-qualified staff.

“There is so much wastage in the system because people don’t use their medicines properly. They haven’t had all their questions answered, or they are not confident or don’t want to talk to their GPs about it.

“This potentially has big cost savings in terms of people really complying with, and getting more benefit from, their medicines. It is not that pharmacists are better. They have different skills. They know more about medicines than GPs and they can explain it probably in better, simpler terms.”

Few surgeries in the UK currently have on-site pharmacists despite a quarter of the population suffering from long-term health conditions. According to NHS data, 30-50% of prescribed medication for such conditions is not taken as recommended.