There has been an “unprecedented surge” of pharmacists being recruited into GP practices, and it is “important as a pharmacist to understand what the requirements are” when taking on the role, the Association of Independent Multiple Pharmacies (AIMp) chief executive told C+D last week.
Her advice comes the week after the Pharmacists’ Defence Association (PDA) claimed there has been a rise in the number of “critical incidents that may harm patients” involving GP pharmacists.
“Some of these recent cases are linked in some way to pharmacists prescribing inappropriately or offering poor advice,” the PDA claimed.
The story was reported in the national press, with The Sun claiming on its website that patients had “died after pharmacists took over some GP work”.
Ms Hannbeck stressed that “no pharmacist gets up in the morning to go and harm somebody”.
“A lot of community pharmacists are willing to support GP practices,” she added.
Primary care networks and GP practices should “work collaboratively” with community pharmacists to develop capability “across the existing network”, Ms Hannbeck said.
Pharmacist prescribers working in all settings must ensure that “robust clinical algorithms” and “necessary due diligence” are in place, especially when it comes to remote prescribing, Ms Hannbeck added.
“Patient safety has to be the key focus,” she stressed.