Pharmacy First reality: Many pharmacists awaiting GP referrals

Ensuring comprehensive healthcare services for the community necessitates collaboration between pharmacies and GP surgeries. However, several pharmacists
have voiced concerns about a lack of cooperation from their local GPs in implementing the Pharmacy First (PF) service.

In a survey conducted by the National Pharmacy Association (NPA) covering 470 pharmacies across England, three-quarters of pharmacists (77 per cent) indicated
that local GP practices are not appropriately referring patients to the new service.

The survey highlighted instances of patients either not being referred or being referred but found ineligible for support through Pharmacy First. Additionally,
one in five NPA members (19 per cent) felt that their local GP practices were not engaging with the initiative at all.

Commenting on the issue, NPA chair Nick Kaye said: “Feedback from across our network suggests that the rollout of Pharmacy First varies considerably from area
to area.