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Primary care

Half of GP surgeries have pharmacy support, says Scottish health minister

Jeane Freeman

Source: FIP Congress 2018

Jeane Freeman, the Scottish health minister, told FIP Congress delegates that the Scottish government has now funded over 200 full-time equivalent pharmacists to GP surgeries in Scotland

Pharmacy services are taking a “crucial role” in Scotland, with half of GP surgeries now able to access a pharmacist or a pharmacy technician with advanced clinical skills, the Scottish health minister says.

Speaking at the opening of the International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) Congress in Glasgow on 2 September 2018, Jeane Freeman outlined progress towards the Scottish government’s 2020 vision for healthcare, saying that it was looking at how to make community pharmacy the “first port of call” for patients.

She said: “NHS pharmaceutical care in Scotland has attracted a well-earned UK and international reputation for innovative models of care, with community pharmacy playing a significant and crucial role.” 

Freeman added that there had been “significant investment” in the introduction of pharmacists and technicians into general practice over the past three years in Scotland.

She said: “We have now funded over 200 full-time equivalent pharmacists with advanced clinical skills, as well as 47 full-time equivalent technicians providing support to around half of our GP practices in Scotland. These pharmacists and technicians are working directly with GP practices, freeing up GPs’ time to speed with people who have more complex needs.”

The FIP Congress opened on 2 September 2018 and will run until 6 September 2018.

The 2018 FIP congress in Glasgow, Scotland, brings together pharmacy practitioners and pharmaceutical scientists from around the world to consider ways of extending the role of pharmacists so that they play a full part in ensuring patients, and health systems, achieve full benefit from the medicines people take. 

The theme of the 78th FIP World Congress of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences is ‘Pharmacy: Transforming outcomes!’ 

This is the first time that the FIP World Congress has been held in the UK for nearly 40 years. The last time was in 1979, making this a truly unique learning opportunity for pharmacists and pharmaceutical scientists in Great Britain. 

UK healthcare company RB is Gold Sponsor of this year’s congress.

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal DOI: 10.1211/PJ.2018.20205391

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