King Review interim report: Opportunities remain to harness hospital pharmacist expertise

The interim report of the Review of Pharmacy Remuneration and Regulation recognises the proven merit of Home Medicines Reviews (HMRs) and foreshadows a welcome broadening of Community Pharmacy Agreement (CPA) stakeholder negotiations, but represents a missed opportunity to consider the impact of the CPA on the crucial hospital pharmacy sector, SHPA said today.

Chief Executive Kristin Michaels says SHPA was pleased to see the value of medication review, and those initiated through hospital referral, recognised in yesterday’s report.

‘SHPA welcomes the panel’s support of hospital-initiated HMR referral pathways for high-risk patients, which we have advocated for over the last decade, and its confirmation of our view toward an ongoing and appropriate level of accreditation and training for pharmacists to conduct these important reviews.

‘Support to lift the cap of 20 HMRs per pharmacist per month and introduce more targeted eligibility criteria are also positive moves.

‘HMRs performed by independent pharmacists, including follow-up in the home where people are most comfortable, have a strong evidence base and SHPA looks forward to working with partners across pharmacy and the broader healthcare practice to make them a reality.’

Ms Michaels says SHPA agrees with the report’s recognition that a broader range of stakeholders should be involved in CPA negotiations.

‘To effectively ensure optimal health outcomes across all episodes of care, it is important the review recognises the specialised expertise of hospital pharmacists, their management of Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) resources and their trained capacity to most appropriately initiate and manage the transition of care to the community setting.

‘It is therefore disappointing SHPA was not included in this widening of CPA negotiations as hospital pharmacists play a pivotal role in ensuring patients receive the best medicines management advice in the right place, at the right time – this could be upon leaving hospital, on the high street, or at home, depending on their needs.

Ms Michaels says SHPA also welcomes the panel’s recognition of the value of flexible pharmacy programs, and the value pharmacists can provide as part of healthcare teams.

‘SHPA agrees with the panel’s assertion that the pharmacy sector must increase its advocacy and leadership efforts, including building solid evidence for pharmacy services that we know, from member experience, have proven value for the community.’

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