National Pharmacy Association (NPA) - News updates

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Face coverings in shops, including pharmacies and supermarkets (update 10/08/2020)

Wearing a face covering intends to protect others rather than the wearer, therefore, it does not replace regular hand washing and social distancing measures that have been important in controlling the spread of COVID-19 so far. To help members inform customers/patients visiting a pharmacy of the new requirement, the NPA has produced a poster to display in the pharmacy, and an exemption cards handout. These are available to download and print here; Face covering poster 01 Face covering poster 02 Face covering exemption card. Key messages for pharmacy teams We advise members to be pragmatic and to use their professional judgement as healthcare professionals. Pharmacies may wish to set clear expectations about what they want customers/patients to do, which includes wearing a face covering in most cases. However, it is not for pharmacists to police the new law. Rather it is to explain to customers of the importance of protecting staff and other people visiting the pharmacy. Furthermore, ensure conversations are conducted in a confidential and polite manner, reminding customers/visitors of the new requirement, and be mindful, respectful of responses. If a customer/patient informs you that they are not able to wear a face covering, or are exempt, then this should not be a barrier for them accessing pharmacy services.…

NHS Pharmacy First Plus Scotland service

Scottish Government and CPS have determined a £3.3m allocation for 2020-21 to support pharmacy contractors provide an independent prescribing extension to the NHS Pharmacy First Scotland service to be known as NHS Pharmacy First Plus. NHS Circular PCA(2020)(P)16 provides the service specification for NHS Pharmacy First Plus, the service claim form and explanation of the planned career pathway for community pharmacists which will increase the number of independent prescriber (IP) pharmacists available for patients to access from pharmacies. NHS Pharmacy First Plus aims to support patients with acute common clinical conditions out with the scope of NHS Pharmacy First Scotland to be advised and receive treatment within the pharmacy rather than be referred to another healthcare professional setting. NHS Pharmacy First Plus will utilise IP pharmacists competency in common clinical conditions to support shifting the balance of care into the community. The circular sets out the intention for support to be provided this year to pharmacy contractors to increase the number of National Education Scotland (NES) foundation pharmacists who will progress to fully funded independent prescribing (IP) courses, and common clinical conditions training.  NHS Boards this year will transfer to local funding or discontinue existing nationally funded IP community pharmacy clinics.  …

PQS Phase 2 information (August 2020)

Following the announcement of the Pharmacy Quality Scheme (PQS) Part 1, pharmacy contractors were informed that completing PQS Part 1 will be a Gateway requirement for PQS Part 2. Further information is now available on the domains and criteria that pharmacy contractors will need to fulfil for PQS Part 2 declaration: PQS Part 2 will commence in October 2020 with the declaration in February 2021 Full details of PQS Part 2, including guidance and requirements for each criterion, how to claim payment and funding allocation will be in the September 2020 Drug Tariff PQS Part 2 will have five domains, each with its own criteria – all criteria in a particular domain need to be completed in order to claim payment for that domain The domains are listed in the table below with a summary of the criteria for each; however, please note that this list does not reflect the full, detailed requirements, as it is not finalised yet Therefore, the information below is to help pharmacy contractors be prepared, and start undertaking some of the tasks required to complete the various domains if they wish to do so Where the domains require training to be completed, it is advisable that pharmacy contractors retain a copy of the personalised certificate provided as evidence of the training that an individual has undertaken and completed   Table: Initial information on the domains and criteria for PQS Part 2 – ensure the full details, guidance and requirements is consulted when published in September 2020 Definitions: Pharmacy staff with a patient-facing role: includes all registered pharmacy professionals, pre-registration graduates, dispensary staff, medicines counter assistants, delivery drivers, and locums Registered pharmacy professionals: includes pharmacists, provisionally-registered pharmacists, pharmacy technicians and locum pharmacists Domain Summary of criteria for the domain Infection Prevention and Control and Antimicrobial Stewardship Domain     Infection Prevention and Control ·       All non-registered pharmacy staff to have completed the ‘HEE infection prevention and control Level 1 e-learning and assessment’: https://portal.e-lfh.org.uk/Component/Details/459777…

RIDDOR and COVID-19

The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR) 2013 requires employers, or someone in control of a premises (the Responsible Person) to report and keep records of certain work-related accidents, occupational diseases and specified dangerous occurrences. Reportable injuries include all deaths arising from a work related accident, ‘specified injuries’ which are listed in RIDDOR 2013 Regulation 4, and injuries incapacitating an employee for more than seven consecutive days, excluding the day of the accident. Injuries incapacitating an employee for more than three consecutive days needs to be recorded only.   Reporting timeframes: If an incident falls under the dangerous occurrences category, it is required to be reported, without delay, and within 10 days If an incident falls under the occupational disease category, it is required to be reported as soon as is possible, once the Responsible Person receives the diagnosis If an employer misses the required timeframes for reporting, then the report can, and should still be made, as not reporting at all can lead to prosecution. A report after the required timeframes may be challenged, therefore, record the reason why reporting was delayed, for example, lack of/clarity of information about the incident, annual leave, etc. However, employers should focus on ensuring a RIDDOR report is made without unnecessary delay and as soon as is possible.…

Scottish Financial Framework 2020/2021 announced

Arrangements for remuneration to Scottish contractors for the period 2020 to 2021 have been published by Scottish Government in NHS Circular PCA (P)(2020)15. The detailed circular describes the payments which have been agreed between Community Pharmacy Scotland (CPS) and Scottish Government as the funding package this year for Scottish community pharmacy contractors within a three year settlement. The funding package consists of a global sum component which will increase by 2.5% in all three years and a fixed non-global sum of £1.3mill. The 2020/2021 global sum of £188.148 million consists of a series of payments to cover funding for core community pharmacy services, including the additional investment by Scottish Government of £5mill this year for the new NHS Pharmacy First Scotland service.  The non-global sum will support increasing independent prescribing in community pharmacies. A guaranteed minimum income of £65mill is defined with a further projected mapping of £25mill from the drug tariff, along with profit margin sharing agreements between contractors and the NHS. Clawback agreements have now ceased with any monies due to the NHS being claimed through drug tariff reductions. Payments, and associated thresholds for contractors including Essential Small Pharmacies are detailed in the circular for all national community pharmacy services. …

Superintendent Update: Launch of Phase 1 NPA vaccination services resources pack to support delivery of vaccination services (including flu service) 2020/21 during COVID-19

In this update: Introduction – vaccination services considerations during COVID-19 Recommended actions NPA support Launch of NPA vaccination services pack (Phase 1) – resources available NHS flu vaccination service 2020-21 – country specific updates – England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland Private PGDs Professional indemnity insurance Further resources coming soon   Main story Introduction – vaccination services considerations during COVID-19 During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, many community pharmacies had ceased to provide vaccination services. However, community pharmacies are now seeking to reintroduce vaccination services in a risk managed manner, including preparing to deliver the flu vaccination service for the 2020/21 season, and any potential provision of a COVID-19 vaccine when it is deployed. To deliver vaccination services as safely as possible, it is important to risk assess individuals carrying out the service, as well as the pharmacy premises/workplace to ensure that risks are identified and appropriate/relevant actions taken to mitigate risks prior to delivering vaccination services. Pharmacies providing vaccination services should ensure they have correct processes and equipment in place to provide a safe and effective service to patients whilst ensuring the safety of staff. Access the NPA workplace risk reduction template and individual employee risk assessment.   Recommended actions NPA members are recommended to exercise appropriate clinical and professional judgement when providing vaccination services in, what we appreciate is, a highly challenging, rapidly changing environment. The NPA workplace risk reduction template and individual employee risk assessment should be completed to ensure risks are appropriately mitigated prior to expanding other services such as vaccinations: https://www.npa.co.uk/news-and-events/news-item/superintendent-update-launch-of-covid-19-individual-risk-assessment-pack-for-community-pharmacies-uk/…

IMPORTANT UPDATE – SSP: fluoxetine capsules 40mg (SSP06) extended (England, Northern Ireland and Wales)

Key points The SSP came into effect on Wednesday 20 May 2020; its scheduled expiry date was Monday 10 August  2020; however, this has now been extended to Friday 4 September 2020 Under the SSP, when presented with prescriptions for fluoxetine capsules 40mg, pharmacists can instead supply two x fluoxetine capsules 20mg. The extended SSP is applicable for community pharmacies in England, Northern Ireland and Wales The SSP and further information is available from: https://www.nhsbsa.nhs.uk/pharmacies-gp-practices-and-appliance-contractors/serious-shortage-protocols-ssps Summary of recommended actions to prepare for dispensing in accordance with an SSP Ensure the current version of the SSP is used before supplying the alternative item Ensure that all staff, including locums, who will be involved in dispensing an item in accordance with an SSP are trained and competent to do so Ensure that an SSP standard operating procedure (SOP) is in place and other relevant SOPs are updated, read, understood, signed and implemented by all members of the pharmacy team involved in service delivery Ensure that the pharmacy team know where they can find new SSPs and/or changes to an existing SSP Ensure that the pharmacy has access to an NHSmail account so that it can receive notification when an SSP is issued Professional indemnity insurance NPA professional indemnity insurance will cover NPA members, customers (and the pharmacists they employ/engage) when supplying medicines/appliances under the relevant enabling legislation and the Serious Shortages Protocols (SSPs) which apply.…

Ask Your Pharmacist (AYP) Week 2020 – 2-9 November

It will run from 2-9 November and as usual aims both to raise awareness of pharmacy services and to prompt conversations with key stakeholders at a local level about community pharmacy’s role and benefits. According to an opinion survey carried out for the NPA in June, only 29% of people are “definitely aware” that community pharmacies are part of the NHS, despite the fact that pharmacies are the most visited of all settings where NHS care is offered. Campaign materials will therefore highlight pharmacy-based NHS services and that community pharmacy teams work as a team with other health service providers to deliver patient-centred care. In preparation, the NPA is collecting case studies of integrated care in which pharmacies demonstrate great teamwork within the NHS.  Please email press@npa.co.uk to share yours.…

Prime Minister visits Ruislip pharmacy, discusses latest position

Owner of Ruislip Manor Pharmacy and NPA member, Sanjay Doegar, who hosted the visit, said: “It’s great that Mr Johnson made time in his busy schedule to hear about the situation on the ground for community pharmacy. We talked about the work of pharmacies during the coronavirus pandemic, the flu season ahead and the need for long-term investment to unlock our sector’s potential”. NPA chief executive Mark Lyonette said: “In the last two months, NPA members have played host to the Health Secretary, the chief executive of the NHS and now also the Prime Minister.  It is really important that senior figures like this hear first-hand the experiences of frontline pharmacy teams, to give colour and authenticity to the representations made by pharmacy leaders nationally. Politicians are getting the consistent message that pharmacy teams are heroes on the health service frontline, and that more support is needed from government – to keep the doors open and for pharmacies to play a key role in Britain’s eventual recovery from the pandemic.” In June, Matt Hancock visited Market Chemist in central London and Simon Stevens went to Pavillion Pharmacy Brixton.…

COVID-19: Extension of self- isolation period to 10 days

Evidence suggests that patients with COVID-19 who are exhibiting mild symptoms and are recovering, can still be infectious between 7 and 9 days after the onset of the illness. UK Chief Medical Officers (England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales) have made a decision to extend the self -isolation period from 7 to 10 days in order to minimise the risk to the general population, especially with the possibility of increased transmission rates during the autumn and winter months. Anyone in the community with symptoms or a positive test result, will now be required to self-isolate for 10 days. Read the full statement from UK Chief Medical Officers here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/statement-from-the-uk-chief-medical-officers-on-extension-of-self-isolation-period-30-july-2020   Please contact the Pharmacy Services team for further advice and support: Telephone: 01727891800 (Mon-Fri 9am to 6pm, Sat 9am to 1pm) Email: pharmacyservices@npa.co.uk…