The role of practice pharmacists in general practice has never been more important or more exciting.
The General Practice Forward View has cemented this by committing to a vision of over £100m to support an extra 1,500 clinical pharmacists in general practice by 2020/21.
This follows a recent NHS England pilot in 2015/16 which resulted in 491 practice pharmacists in clusters of general practice as part of an innovative national initiative to evaluate their impact. There are now 580 clinical pharmacists working in general practice as part of the NHS England programme currently, alongside hundreds working independently on a session or employed basis by GP practices.
This equates to one full time pharmacist per 30,000 patients in England,
Known interchangeably as clinical pharmacists or primary care / practice pharmacists, pharmacists have been employed by forward-thinking practices for some time but with the GP workforce crisis, this role is likely to proliferate in both scale and influence on prescribing and long-term condition management.
With the new phase 2 wave of NHS England funding being announced, the role will continue to proliferate in both scale and influence on prescribing and the management of long-term conditions.
Practice pharmacists are set to become as instrumental to GP practices as practice nurses are currently. However, as a practice pharmacist, you need to establish yourself quickly to add immense value, measure the value you are adding and make yourselves indispensable – and fast!
The i2i programme will not only cover the clinical knowledge, skills and understanding you need to become a fully functional practice pharmacist but will support and enable you to implement with real practical tips and advice.