National Pharmacy Association Board meeting – September 2018

14 Sep 2018

The National Pharmacy Association’s Board and Committees convened on 10-11 September. Chair of the Board, Nitin Sodha, reports: “The Board considered a number of weighty matters, from NHS commissioning to the likely impact of Brexit on our sector.

“Our guest, Simon Dukes, presented his observations about the sector’s position based on his early months as PSNC chief executive. He recognises the depth of the current challenges, but pointed to the fundamental strengths of the pharmacy network in relation to the illness prevention agenda, which continues to grow in significance. Opportunities also exist for pharmacy to facilitate patient journeys, given that medicines are a feature of care in all health care settings. Simon emphasised the importance of focusing on common ground, both within the sector and in terms of the priorities we share with the NHS.

“We received an update about the NPA’s clinical services programme, learning in particular about the progress of our cardiovascular scheme in Essex, in which patients are being screened for hypertension and atrial fibrillation. These are early days, but by supporting members to deliver such a service we are showing that we back our members to move further into the clinical space. In short, we’re walking the walk, not just talking the talk about the immense potential of the community pharmacy sector.

“Our Scotland manager, Janice Oman, updated us on the expansion of the Minor Ailments Service in Scotland to all citizens. In England we have something to learn about the quality of the relationships that allow such positive developments to take place.

“Among other topics discussed this month were the European Falsified Medicines and developments in community pharmacy IT. These have effectively become standing items on the Board’s agenda. We are all clear that IT is a key enabler for service development, operational efficiency and integrated care.”