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Lack of funding will prevent pharmacists expanding clinical roles, says Lloyds research

Nearly half of all community pharmacists in England believe lack of government funding will prevent them expanding their clinical role, according to the results of a survey revealed exclusively to The Journal.

Although pharmacists are keen to increase the clinical services they can provide, as outlined in the pharmacy White Paper, “Pharmacy in England — building strengths, delivering the future”, they are sceptical that there is enough money available to allow them to take on these new responsibilities.

The survey, based on online research carried out via SurveyMonkey on behalf of Lloydspharmacy, involved 382 pharmacies in the UK between August 20 and October 13 this year.

Nearly half said they were concerned about lack of funding and other resources for them to provide additional services.

Comments included “The government keeps taking money away from the profession — how can we go forward with so little financial backing?” and “We simply cannot continue providing more, for less”.

Andy Murdock, Lloydspharmacy pharmacy director, shared the concerns raised and said: “Without visibility on long-term funding, pharmacy businesses are not able to feel confident about investing to supply further services, particularly in the current economic climate.”

He added that pharmacies need to “embrace” working with local primary care trusts to ensure funding for new services that will in turn protect the future of their businesses.

But he warned: “We must be careful about taking on more roles as we will end up spreading ourselves too thin. The White Paper means a more clinical and vital role in the community. If it means improved business, as long as we are rightfully paid for it, then I think it is something we should look forward to.”

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal URI: 10043862

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