The country will be “developing and implementing a redesigned minor ailment and common conditions service available to all in the coming year,” the Scottish government said in its 2018-19 national programme, published yesterday (September 4).
The national service was introduced across all pharmacies in 2006, but is currently only available to “people who meet certain age, health and social criteria”, the government pointed out.
Last year, Community Pharmacy Scotland (CPS) attributed the fact that the majority of the population have not registered with the service in part due to only 60% of the population meeting the eligibility criteria – which includes under-16s, under-19s in full-time education, over-60s, individuals on jobseeker’s allowance and asylum seekers.
Inspired by a pilot
The government said its plans to expand the scheme “will build on the learning from the extended minor ailment service pilot in Inverclyde – which saw all patients in the area granted eligibility last year – and “the rollout of the Pharmacy First initiative” – a national service enabling pharmacists to treat patients with urinary tract infections and impetigo without a prescription.
“Strengthening” chronic medication service
The government will also be “strengthening and refreshing” its chronic medication service for patients with long-term conditions.
“In the coming months we will say more about how the shape of this service will be enhanced by building in medication reviews, pharmacist prescribing and monitoring of patient medicines.”
CPS involved “every step of the way”
CPS chairman Martin Green said: “We are delighted to welcome this announcement and look forward to working with the Scottish government to explore and shape the evolution of the service over the coming year.”
CPS added: “It’s too early to say what the details might look like, but we know for sure that [we] will be involved every step of the way.”