Pharmacists are dispensing a range of 16 prescription-only medicines (POMs) without the need for a prescription under a scheme developed by Day Lewis and the NPA.
The private patient group direction (PGD) service, which has been piloted in Day Lewis pharmacies since October, has allowed patients to go straight to their pharmacy rather than a GP when they require certain POMs.
The 16 POMs available under the scheme – which will be available for NPA members to purchase from January – cover sexual health, men's and women's health and travel medicines, and range from ventolin to viagra.
Pharmacists will go through a questionnaire and ensure there is no reason why the patient should not receive the medicine
More on POMs
After the patient has completed an assessment form, either online or in the pharmacy, the pharmacist will go through the questionnaire and ensure there is no reason why the patient should not receive the medicine.
Payment for the medication will be arranged between the pharmacy and the patient, the NPA said. Members purchasing the scheme would receive website hosting, e-learning and in-pharmacy campaign material.
"It gives the opportunity for pharmacists to extend their role and offer more services to their public... and use their skills in a way that perhaps they don't with dispensing alone," said NPA director of pharmacy Deborah Evans. "It can open up a conversation about other health issues."
Day Lewis chief executive Kirit Patel said the service was convenient and highly accessible" and would benefit "both patients and pharmacists alike".
"It will make the most out of pharmacists' skills as experts in medicines while freeing up GPs' time," he said.
The POMs included under the scheme are:
Men's Health: Viagra, Cialis, Levitra (to treat erectile dysfunction)
Women's Health: Trimethoprim (to treat cystitis)
Sexual Health: Zithromax, doxycycline, ellaOne (to treat chlamydia and provide EHC)
General Health: Ventolin, Telfast, Dovonex ointment (to treat asthma, hay fever and psoriasis)
Travel Health: Malarone, Malarone Paed, Lariam, doxycycline, Ciproxin and Scopoderm (for malaria prevention, travellers' diarrhoea and motion sickness)
Will you be making use of this scheme?