Frontline pharmacists: making a difference for people with long term conditions

Royal Pharmaceutical Society, November 2016

This report argues that community pharmacists should be able to routinely prescribe medicines for people with long term conditions and refer them directly to other healthcare professionals to ease the overwhelming demand facing the NHS.  Care for people with long term conditions, such as such as diabetes or asthma, currently accounts for 50% of all GP appointments, 64% of all outpatient appointments 70% of all health and social care spending.

The RPS is calling for a change in policy regarding the training of prescribers to enable more pharmacists to become prescribers. This means they could take on the management of patients whose condition is stable but require regular monitoring and alteration of their medicines to stay well, so keeping them out of hospital or GP surgeries.

Click here to view the report.

Prescribing roles for health professionals other than doctors

Cochrane Group, November 2016

The aim of this Cochrane review was to find out if prescribing by health professionals other than doctors delivers comparable outcomes to prescribing by doctors.  Cochrane researchers collected and analysed all relevant studies from various countries.

Click here to access the full review.

A competency framework for all prescribers

Royal Pharmaceutical Society, July 2016

When prescribed and used effectively medicines have the potential to significantly improve the quality of lives and improve patient outcomes. However the challenges associated with prescribing the right medicines and supporting patients to use them effectively should not be underestimated.

In 2012, a single prescribing competency framework was published by the National Prescribing Centre/National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) to support all prescribers to prescribe effectively.

In 2015, the RPS started the process of updating the framework with the backing of NICE and in collaboration with all the prescribing professions UK wide. The updated single competency framework was published on our website in July 2016, for all regulators, professional bodies, prescribing professions and patients to use..

The competency framework has been endorsed by professional bodies representing other prescribers. In future, we will continue to publish and maintain the updated competency framework in collaboration with the other prescribing professions.

Click here to download the framework.

The safer management of controlled drugs: Annual Report 2015

Care Quality Commission, July 2016

The CQC report for on the safer management of controlled drugs highlights local and national initiatives to promote the safe use of controlled drugs and to reduce harm from their misuse. The report also includes an overview of data for 2015 on prescribing of controlled drugs across England in the primary care sector and identifies any trends in prescribing, and highlights key changes to legislation.

The report makes three recommendations to strengthen existing arrangements for reporting and sharing concerns about controlled drugs across England.

Click here for further information and to access the report.

Stopping over-medication of people with learning disabilities

NHS England, June 2016

Multiple psychotropic drug prescribing for people with learning disabilities often starts at a specialist level which is then passed onto primary care with or without follow up. Many GPs are overseeing the management and prescribing long term. Following the Banerjee report (2009) and the national drive to reduce inappropriate use of antipsychotic drugs in dementia to save lives, confidence has grown amongst GPs and care teams to review prescribing. This document aims to provide support to begin the process of challenging continued need in people with a learning disability.

Click here to read the full report.

Prescribing of psychiatric drugs to people with a learning disability or autism

Public Health England, July 2015

This study finds that one in six adults with learning disabilities are being prescribed anti-psychotic drugs by their GP that are normally used to treat major mental illnesses. Over half of these adults do not have a recorded diagnosis of a condition these drugs are designed to treat.

Click here for further information and to download the report.