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Friday Letter 05/04/2019

Friday 5th April 2019

New Pharmacy Minister

Seema Kennedy has been appointment the new pharmacy minister as of yesterday, Thursday 4th April.

She is currently the MP for and also takes on the role as minsterial lead for Public Health England, the Food Standards Agency and NHS Resolution.

Networks will include pharmacies, optometrists and dental providers | Pulse

Published by Pulse on 1st April 2019, please see the following article.

Networks will include pharmacies, optometrists and dental providers 

1 April 2019 

Primary care networks will include community pharmacies, optometrists and dental providers, according to new NHS contract documents.

Networks will be expected to have ‘wide-reaching’ membership to offer ‘more personalised, coordinated health and social care’ to their local populations, NHS England said in a new primary care network frequently asked questions document.

Primary care networks are a major part of the new five-year GP contract, and will each cover a patient population of between 30,000 and 50,000, with all patients being covered by a network – even if not all practices join them.

But the in the latest document outlining the networks, NHS England has made it clear that they will not only include GP practices.

The document said: ‘Primary care networks will be expected to have a wide-reaching membership, led by groups of general practices.

‘This should include providers from the local system such as community pharmacy, optometrists, dental providers, social care providers, voluntary sector organisations, community services providers or local government.’

Despite this, general practice must remain at the core of networks, it added.

‘If a primary care network does not have a core set of GPs and practices, it is not a primary care network – the Network Contract DES is a mechanism for flowing funding to primary care networks, and general practice is expected to be the core around which primary care networks are built upon,’ the document said.

NHS England revealed last month that primary care networks would not have to be led by a GP, but that ‘any clinician’ in general practice would be able to take charge as clinical director.

Click here for the full article

Health Secretary’s Brexit update

On Tuesday 2nd April, Matt Hancock, the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care wrote a letter to advise Health and social care staff on the most recent information available on the Government’s Brexit preparations, including an update on medicines and prescribing as well as the recognition of professional qualifications.

Click here to view the letter

PSNC has also published guidance following this recent publication:

Boots store closures – 60,000 UK jobs ‘at risk’ after sudden US profit warning | Mirror

Please see the following article from the Mirror regarding the potential closure of several UK Boots stores

UK stores are currently being reviewed – with the group looking at poor performing shops as well as “opportunities for consolidation

“Thousands of jobs at beauty chain Boots could be at risk after its US owner issued a shock profit warning on Tuesday evening.

Click here for the full article

Lung Health Checks- Pharmacies in Newham, Tower Hamlets and Waltham Forest

Please be reminded of the following information for the Lung Health check programme from University College London Hospital (UCLH). 

You should have received your copy of the Lung Health Screening poster by post to your pharmacy.

If you have any queries, please contact


In the next few weeks, GPs in your local area will be inviting people aged 55-77 for a free Lung Health Check. At the check, people may be offered a CT scan of their lungs and be asked to give a blood sample, as part of a research project called the SUMMIT Study.

Run by specially trained healthcare professionals, the Lung Health Check is a straight-forward way to find out how well a person’s lungs are working. The checks can spot problems early – often before any symptoms are noticed by an individual, and at a stage when treatment can be more successful.

The Lung Health Check is available to people aged 55-77 who have ever smoked and the invitation will come direct from their GP. Like many other screening programmes, people can only have the check if they are invited by their GP.

We are contacting you to ask for your support in raising awareness of these checks among the people you work with. You can support the lung health checks by:

  • – displaying posters in your pharmacies
  • – sharing information in your newsletters or website
  • – sharing information via your social media channels

A poster/image and text that can be shared online, in newsletters or on social media is attached. Please do let me know if you plan to do this, to help with our evaluation.

We can send you a supply of the posters for use in your pharmacies across Newham and Waltham Forest. Please let me know if you would like to be sent some to be distributed and how many you think you can make good use of.  Alternatively, we can send them to the pharmacies directly.  

Thank you in advance for your help in improving the lives of people living in your local area. If you have any further questions, please do email us

Cancer Awareness Training

Do you want to cut the risk of cancer?

  • Do you want to reduce deaths from cancer in NE London?
  • Do you want to provide evidence that community pharmacy saves lives?
  • Do you want to receive financial support by upskilling your staff and improving support to your patients and customers?

Places are limited, click on this link to register now and avoid disappointment:

April Campaigns 2019

There are several health campaigns and awareness days that your pharmacy teams can get involved in throughout April.

Click here for more information:

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