Latest News

Our Vision of the Model of Community Pharmacy practice in Scotland

Wednesday, September 20, 2017


Pharmacists are the experts in medicine and pharmaceutical care

CPS’ vision of practice for community pharmacy in Scotland retains our setting at the heart of our communities and draws specifically upon the procurement, safety, patient supply and clinical appropriateness of prescribed medicines skills from a pharmacist’s broad range of expertise.

To deliver care effectively, the pharmacy retains, maintains and is responsible for all aspects of medicines supply. Patients are required to register with a pharmacy for all services with the pharmacist accountable for all of this.

The pharmacist is decoupled from the technical aspect of procurement and assembly of medicines within the supply process to allow their full clinical skill to be devoted to a patient facing informative role, ensuring maximum benefit and safety is derived from prescribed therapy.

To enable this to happen the pharmacy support structure will have to perform the supply accuracy check.

For some pharmacies, this will be delivered using technology alone, some with staff only and some with a hybrid approach. The dispensary team employed in this model will have the ability to oversee the accuracy of the supply process.

The decoupling of the pharmacist from the technical aspect of supply further facilitates the management of common clinical conditions from the community pharmacy setting, utilising the principle of “pharmacy first” supported by pharmacist triage, access to clinical records and effective onward referral routes.

With people receiving more and more healthcare interventions in or closer to their own home, CPS recognises the need to adapt practice to this changing environment and calls for flexibility in supervision arrangements to allow professional judgement to be exercised in the safe supply of medicines from the pharmacy in the absence of a pharmacist. This will allow them to interact with the patient and the wider primary care multidisciplinary team.

Community pharmacy has a significant role to play in improving Scotland’s overall public health record through supporting government priorities and being the supply route of choice for public health initiatives that involve the direct use of medicines, including vaccination.

CPS want to see this vision realised and is willing to work with Scottish Government colleagues to devise a financial model that meets our aspirations and provides a fair return on pharmacy owner investment.