From controversial marketing campaigns to fears that its vast dispensing facilities will quash high street pharmacy businesses, Pharmacy2U’s rise has not gone unnoticed.
As the number of antibiotics supplied through the NHS Urgent Medicine Supply Advanced Service increases, concerns are growing over its impact on antimicrobial resistance.
Medical cannabis was legalised in the UK on 1 November 2018, but the regulations around its use and supply remain strict. Here is a quick update about how it is being used in the NHS and what benefits it may or may not offer.
Is a complete ban on OTC opioids the solution?Subscription
Misuse of over-the-counter opioids often slips under the radar. Some experts say the UK should follow other countries and ban them altogether, but others argue that there is more that pharmacists can do to help tackle this problem.
As concerns over deaths related to the diet pill 2,4-dinitrophenol (DNP) increase, healthcare professionals — including pharmacists — are being called on to play their part in raising awareness and preventing DNP-related harm.
An update on what pharmacists can expect from primary care networks, the latest revolution planned by NHS England.
In a move that has taken the sector by surprise, NHS trusts and pharmacy multiples have published plans to introduce a new route into the pharmacy profession via an apprenticeship scheme
Pharmacists can help patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus adopt a low-carbohydrate diet and reduce their medicines load.
The use of fish oils to improve cardiovascular health has been in and out of favour for decades, but positive results from a recent trial of Amarin’s Vascepa have created quite a stir — particularly as they come after a set of negative findings in 2018.
Will pharmacy become a five-year degree?Subscription
Proposals from the General Pharmaceutical Council to overhaul pharmacy education and training have been met with a mixed response.
Stopping whooping cough in its tracksSubscription
Whooping cough incidence is increasing in the UK, possibly owing to a change in vaccine type in 2004. Epidemiologists are working to develop solutions that could eventually eradicate the disease.
The General Pharmaceutical Council has introduced a new regime for the inspection of pharmacies, including three different types of inspections and inspections generally being unannounced.
Independents: services central to the futureSubscription
Independent community pharmacies are focusing on services as a way of surviving the financial turmoil.
Small multiples: thriving or surviving?Subscription
Small multiples are growing and exploring life outside the NHS, but they are still far from being in an ideal position in 2019’s financial climate.
Large multiples: feeling the financial squeezeSubscription
How the UK’s four largest community pharmacy chains are coping with the current financial climate and the strategies they are employing to tackle the challenges it brings.
On 19 February 2019, Hazel Smith from Health Education England wrote to hospital chief pharmacists about cuts to funding for the training of hospital preregistration pharmacists for the second time in six weeks.
Legislation came into force in February 2019 which allows pharmacists to substitute a different medicine to the one prescribed in the event of a serious shortage.
Pharmacists have an important role to play in the management of osteoarthritis and joint pain, but they also face significant barriers to becoming integrated within the multidisciplinary team.
A major initiative by pharmacists to reduce risky medicines use in the community will be rolled out across the country after it was found to reduce serious adverse events.
Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh NHS Foundation Trust has dramatically improved medicines safety through pharmacy-led initiatives to address mistakes in prescribing and improve error reporting.
Millions of multicompartment compliance aids (MCAs) are handed out by pharmacists each year, but evidence for their benefits is hard to find. Few patients are assessed before being given an MCA and concerns are building over potential errors and harms.
In Lord Carter’s 2016 review, he advised acute hospitals to deploy more clinical pharmacists and use them to drive value from the £6.7bn that hospitals spend on medicines every year. Two years on, The Pharmaceutical Journal investigates whether trusts are on track to meet these ambitious targets.
While pharmacy features prominently as a way to boost primary care and improve the use of medicines in the health service in England, there are concerns that the implementation of this ten-year plan will not live up to the hype.
The 2018 Supreme Court verdict on Pfizer’s second patent for Lyrica has drawn attention to the limitations of the current framework for extending the usefulness of existing treatments.
Commissioners have saved millions of pounds by decommissioning a fifth of minor ailment schemes and restricting sales of over-the-counter medicines, but pharmacists are concerned that vulnerable patients may not be being protected.
NHS looks to pharmacy as it faces a tough winterSubscription
As winter demands on the NHS rise, pharmacists are being reallocated to offer ward-based prescribing and seven-day pharmacy services to relieve the pressure.
While the Psychoactive Substances Act 2016 appears to have controlled circulation of novel psychoactive substances, formerly known as ‘legal highs’, on the high street, a Home Office review has proved what many experts predicted — that the legislation would drive sales onto the streets and the dark web.
A decline in the number of applications to pharmacy schools and more students being accepted through clearing has led to concerns over the future pharmacy workforce.
Study results suggest that PDE-5 inhibitors could have a role in treating cancer, heart failure, neurodegenerative diseases, circulatory disorders and even infectious diseases, but the road to approval for new indications may not be smooth.
Polypharmacy among older people is at an all-time high, prompting a necessary focus on withdrawing inappropriate medicines. However, evidence-based guidelines are needed to overcome barriers to deprescribing.