Friday Letter 17/04/2020

Friday 17th April 2020

Reminder: Pandemic delivery service

The Terms of Service for all Community Pharmacies has been amended. It is now a requirement for contractors to help shielded patients receive their prescriptions. Shielded patients are specified as those who are extremely vulnerable and self-isolating at home.

Identified Shielded patients are initially encouraged to find a family member, friend or carer to collect their medications. Shielded patients are those identified as extremely vulnerable and will flag up on SCR. If this is not possible, patients are advised to contact the pharmacy, in which case pharmacies must:

  1. provide advice to the patient on how to identify a local volunteer to collect the prescription from the pharmacy on their behalf and then deliver it. This could be locally organised volunteer arrangements (e.g. organised by a local council) or volunteers from the NHS Volunteer Responders programme ; or
  2. where no volunteer is available, deliver the medicine as part of the Advanced service
  3. where no volunteer is available, arrange for another pharmacy to deliver it on their behalf. The other pharmacy will be able to claim payment for the delivery under the Advanced service; or
  4. where no volunteer is available, arrange for the prescription to be dispensed and delivered by another pharmacy (by referring the patient to another pharmacy, including a distance selling pharmacy).

Please read the full guidance on these changes from NHSE&I urgently if you have not already done so (published 10th April 2020). Click here to read.

Funding for this will be paid as an allowance to pharmacies, automatically NHSBSA, aligned to the banding used for the Transition Payment.

In addition, an Advanced service is being commissioned by NHSE&I to fund any deliveries that contractors have to make to shielded patients. The service commenced 9th April 2020 and will remain in place until 1st July 2020, this will be reviewed as the situation develops.

Each delivery will be paid at £5 plus VAT and must be claimed via MYS. The service specification is also included in the above guidance from NHSE&I.

Please also read the Drug Tariff determination for the Terms of Service change and Advanced service, and the Secretary of State Directions

For more detail on the above changes and new service, click here for the full PSNC guidance.

Updated preparedness letter for Community Pharmacy

14th April 2020, NHS have published a new preparedness letter for Community Pharmacy.

This is the fourth in a series of updates from NHSE&I

Looking out for each other campaign – PHE Resources

As part of its response to managing the impact of coronavirus, the government has launched a “looking out for each other” campaign to encourage people to support their friends and neighbours.

April 2020 Price Concessions

The 1st update for April 2020 price concessions has been granted

Click here to view

NHSE clinical policy – acute use of NSAIDs and COVID-19

NHS England has published a clinical policy for the acute use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) in people with or at risk of Covid-19. 

The policy does not cover chronic use of NSAIDs.

Government advice on supporting drug and alcohol dependent patients

The government has published Covid-19 advice for commissioners and service providers involved in assisting people who are dependent on drugs or alcohol or both.

Patient Safety Communication for Community Pharmacists: VitaPos will be renamed Hylo Night

VitaPos will be renamed Hylo Night (its identical). Pharmacists may still receive scripts for VitaPos however we have been informed by the Company and the Wholesaler VitaPos stock is low but to dispense Hylo Night which is identical.

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