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Keith Ridge: Hub-and-spoke has 'extraordinary capability'

England’s chief pharmaceutical officer says he understands why pharmacists are “questioning the evidence base” for the dispensing model

England’s chief pharmaceutical officer has defended the “extraordinary capability” of the hub-and-spoke model to dispense the country’s prescriptions.

Keith Ridge predicted last September that centralised hubs could dispense two-thirds of England’s prescriptions, and he told C+D yesterday (February 1) that he “understood” why pharmacists are questioning the evidence base behind this.

Mr Ridge said his visits to two dispensing hubs in north west England had made him “realise the capability that is there”.

“You can see how this will impact on stock holding [and] free up people to do other things. That to me is entirely what it’s about from a clinical point-of-view,” he said.

The sector also needs to look at making hub facilities "work as efficiently as possible", Mr Ridge added. 

The Department of Health (DH) said last month that it believes encouraging the use of this model is one way to make the sector more "efficient and innovative", in a briefing document explaining the planned 6% cut to pharmacy funding.

Last month, Boots told C+D that it is “too early” for the government to base its pharmacy funding decisions on hub-and-spoke technology.

More news on hub and spoke...

All Day Lewis pharmacies to use hub-and-spoke by 2018

NPA: Do not worship ‘false gods’ of hub-and-spoke

Hub and spoke: Where does pharmacy stand? 



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