Community pharmacists were known in the past as chemists. Like GPs, community pharmacists are part of the NHS family. Every day about 1.6 million people visit a pharmacy in England. Community pharmacies are situated in high street locations, in neighbourhood centres, in supermarkets and in the heart of the most deprived communities. Many are open long hours when other health care professionals are unavailable. There are several different types and sizes of community pharmacies, ranging from the large chains with shops on every High Street or in edge of town supermarkets, to small individually owned pharmacies in small communities, in the suburbs and often in deprived areas or rural settings. The traditional role of the community pharmacist as the healthcare professional who dispenses prescriptions written by doctors has changed. In recent years community pharmacists have been developing clinical services in addition to the traditional dispensing role to allow better integration and team working with the rest of the NHS.
- 2 April 2015
- Yorkshire and Humber
- Health, Pharmaceutical
- Local Alliances:
- Leeds Dementia Action Alliance, Yorkshire & Humber Dementia Action Alliance
1. Action Plan
1. The National Dementia Declaration lists seven outcomes that the DAA are seeking to achieve for people with dementia and their carers. How would you describe your organisation’s role in delivering better outcomes for people with dementia and their carers?
We have been involved in the development of the dementia guidelines in Leeds, a document to highlight care pathways in Leeds. We raise awareness of the role pharmacy can play at a local level with reporting to Community Pharmacy West Yorkshire and at a national level at Pharmacy Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC).
We are actively involved with patients with medication, where we try to make sure where possible the patients are taking their medication regularly and safely. This can involve helping with methods to aid compliance including charts to tell when to take medicine, prompting when ordering medication to make sure all medication is taken. Working with other organisations to make sure medications are taken properly like doctors and hospitals.
2. What are the challenges to delivering these outcomes from the perspective of your organisation?
One of the biggest problems that we come across is lack of access to medical information, so we can quite often be aware that someone may be starting with dementia, but will very rarely be given formal notification that someone has been diagnosed.
There are no formal routes for us to feed in the patient care pathway, so we may spot an issue but cannot formally report it.
One of the big issues that still stops early diagnosis and treatment is denial, this can only be overcome with continual education and awareness to overcome some of the stigma of the condition. There is also a lot of work to be done on making people aware that this is not just a problem of memory there are other symptoms of the dementia.
Improve the skills of the workforce
I will make time for the staff to receive training on dementia and Dementia Friends
Improve knowledge of local guidance in care homes
I will make care homes we deal with aware of local guidelines and treatment pathways
Continue to highlight medication issues with patients with dementia
We will try and monitor and prompt patients if not taking or ordering medication.
We will highlight to appropriate practitioners concerns around medication with patient’s consent.