Greater role for community pharmacies urged by Llyr Gruffydd AM
On 11 November Llyr Gruffydd AM visited Rowlands Pharmacy in Llangollen to discuss the importance of using your local pharmacist and see the increasing range of services being offered to the public such as smoking cessation and flu jabs.
Mr Gruffydd said: “Pharmacies in England are facing 11% cuts while in Wales they are seen as an integral and important part of health service delivery. I’m particularly keen to see them used to relieve pressure on hard-pressed GP services by enabling them to sort out repeat prescriptions, which take up so much of a family doctor’s time.
“A huge number of hospital re-admissions occur because of medicines errors and different bits of the health service not communicating effectively. A simple procedure – known as a Discharge Medicines Review – carried out by your local pharmacy could drastically cut those re-admission rates, thus freeing up hospital beds and keeping people in the community.”
Mr Gruffydd added that a more joined-up approach with the Welsh health service was “a no-brainer” if the best value for money and most effective outcomes were to be achieved: “Demands on our health services are increasing year on year and we have to find better ways of working. Keeping people out of hospitals unless they absolutely have to be there should be a priority and I hope community pharmacies such as this can help improve our health care system.”
Speaking for Community Pharmacy Wales, Judy Henley said: “This is a really transformational time for community pharmacy in North Wales. The new Choose Pharmacy IT platform is being rolled out in Betsi Cadwaladr first, and there is a huge opportunity now to connect up different parts of the health service so that community pharmacy becomes used ever more extensively in making health care accessible and modern.”
(Photo: Judy Henley from Community Pharmacy Wales; Simon Kaniak and Claire Chapman from Rowlands Pharmacy; Llyr Gruffydd AM)