Professor Larry Goodyear has called a plan to station pharmacists in surgeries “sensible”, after resent research suggested that in 2015 there will be 67 instances of patients waiting up to a week or more for an appointment with their GP. The organisation has suggested the inclusion of practice-based pharmacists who would be a part of the clinical team for a GP.
Professor Goodyear is the Medical Director at Nomad Travel, and is passionate about giving expert advice to those who will soon be traveling.
Dr Maureen Baker recently acknowledged that waiting times for GP appointments are out of control, and a national cause for concern. However even if there was suddenly an influx of more GP’s and extra funding, the situation couldn’t be immediately turned around due to the long time it takes for GP’s to be trained.
However there are already plenty of highly-trained pharmacists who could step in and help to provide a solution to this problem.
It’s estimated that GP’s with be consulting with close to 370 million patients this year, an increase of 70 million people from just five years go. The rise is thought to be due to the ageing population in the UK, as well as more complex and long term conditions requiring treatment.
While the number of patients have increased significantly, the number of GP’s has remained relatively stagnant. At the same time, the UK also has an over-supply of pharmacists who have expanded their knowledge over the years and trained as clinicians. Pharmacists also work closely with GP practices, solidifying the plan as a good one.
The proposals say that pharmacists would work alongside GP’s in GP surgeries, and key responsibilities would be resolving issues with medicine, especially for patients with long-term conditions. Pharmacists would also be in regular communication with pharmacists based in the community, in hospitals, and at care homes.
Dr Baker also mentioned that patients with diabetes or asthma who need complex medications are likely to be pleased with the news that they can easily contact a pharmacists who can give them advice on how to understand the large amount of information they often receive as they transition from hospital and into community care.
Pharmacists can also advice practice teams on how to best dispose of medicines, how to manage them, and also rationalise costs while the NHS finances are being squeezed.
Professor Goodyear approves of this plan, and said that the announcement is one that the pharmacy profession will be quick to embrace. He also mentioned that a travel clinic could be of use in pharmacies, as this would free up the practice nurses in GP surgeries.
Nomad Travel was established in 1990 by Paul Goodyear, Founder and Chief Executive of the company. While Nomad Travel began as a market stall located in Reading, there are now more than ten stores across the UK, each featuring a retail chain, a travel clinic, and a pharmacy.