Available in all Southern GP Federations
Back in December 2015, the Department of Health announced a five-year initiative that would see additional investment to deploy General Practice Pharmacists (GPPs) in GP Practices to promote safer, more rational and cost-effective prescribing and to deliver better health and wellbeing outcomes for patients. Since April 2016, GP Federations have been recruiting GPPs
to work as an integral part of the general practice team to deliver direct patient care and increase capacity in primary care.
Our GPP workforce across NI now stands at over 340 pharmacists and adds a valuable resource to practice teams. The amount of pharmacist time allocated to each practice is determined largely by practice size but other factors can be taken into account.
General Practice Pharmacists (GPPs) work as an integral part of the multi-disciplinary general practice team. In addition to the practice team, the GPP works within and is supported by the local GPP team and NI-wide GPP network. Every GP practice in NI avails of the services of a GPP through membership of the GP Federation. Although GPPs have a well-defined and wide ranging remit, the GPP role within an individual practice can vary according to practice need and priorities.
The role of a general practice pharmacist includes some of the following tasks; resolving day-to-day medicine issues and consulting with and treating patients directly. This includes providing help to manage long-term conditions, advising those taking multiple medicines (polypharmacy) and delivering clinical advice about treatments. They will also assist with communication across a patient’s care pathway, manage medicines shortages by suggesting suitable alternatives where appropriate, and mentor newer pharmacists, depending on their level of experience. A general practice pharmacist works collaboratively with health care professionals from all disciplines to improve outcomes for patients.
All three Southern GP Federations have Lead Pharmacists for the General Practice Pharmacist service and they are responsible for the delivery of this service to promote safe, cost-effective and evidence-based prescribing. The Lead Pharmacists have responsibility for the management and clinical supervision of General Practice Pharmacists within the Federation. Alongside this job role, Lead Pharmacists also work in individual GP practices providing clinical reviews and working to the KPIs.