Four pharmacies will pilot the scheme from December 11, the Welsh minister for health and wellbeing Vaughan Gething announced yesterday (November 29).
Speaking at the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) Wales’ Medicines Safety Conference in Cardiff, Mr Gething said that “if successful”, the pilot will lead to “a summary of key information from a patient’s GP record” being made available to all Welsh pharmacies with access to the Choose Pharmacy IT system.
According to Community Pharmacy Wales, Choose Pharmacy is an online system that enables accredited pharmacies to provide treatment for 26 "common ailments", as well as access electronic discharge letters.
Mr Gething said the benefits of sharing “vital information” from GP records with pharmacists have been “proven”.
“We are committed to extending access to the Welsh GP record to all pharmacists, once we are confident the system fully meets the needs of community pharmacists providing clinical services through the Choose Pharmacy system,” he said.
Make MURs “more meaningful”
Sion Llewelyn, manager of a Rowlands branch in Bala, north Wales, told C+D today that accessing the GP record would be “extremely useful”, as it would “enable the system to work much better”.
Pharmacies need the information to make currently “limited” medicines use reviews “more meaningful”, especially those involving statins, diuretics and potassium levels, Mr Llewelyn said.
Alex MacKinnon, director for the RPS in Scotland, said the announcement is “great news for patients and community pharmacists in Wales”.
“In England, community pharmacists have had access to the summary care record since 2015. It is clear Scotland is now lagging behind,“ Mr MacKinnon said.