Pharmacy Voice has picked up positive feedback from the pharmacy frontline about the New Medicine Service, but warns that consent issues are deterring patients from enrolling.
Rob Darracott, Chief Executive of Pharmacy Voice said:
“Pharmacists and their teams understand the benefits of the NMS and have demonstrated a zeal to deliver positive results in the weeks since the launch. Independents and multiples are telling us that they have made a good start and that patients are reporting satisfaction with the additional opportunity to discuss their new medicines. The great work pharmacists have always done helping patients get the most from their medicines is now being recognised and rewarded and this is very satisfying for the professionals involved.
“More patients would have benefited by now were it not for the patient consent process, which is unnecessarily bureaucratic. The consent forms can be a barrier to enrolment, with some patients being worried and confused about where their data might be shared, leading to declines. This affects MURs too. Other professions seem to have less obtrusive ways to obtain consent, so why doesn’t pharmacy? This issue was flagged up as a potential problem before the service was launched, but now that it is proving so in practice too, we have raised this issue with the Department of Health, NHS Employers and PSNC as one that needs sorting out as soon as possible, so that no-one is turned off from accessing this valuable service.
“We know how important NMS is to patients and to community pharmacy – so why let an over-bureaucratic administrative process get in the way of it?”