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CCG trials community pharmacy campaign


6 November 2013

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Somerset clinical commissioning group (CCG) has started a campaign to increase the role of pharmacy in treating minor illnesses. 
The ‘Ask Your Pharmacist’ campaign points out that advice and over-the-counter remedies are available without needed to visit general practice or A&E. 
Many minor ailments, such as earache, stomach upsets and sore throats could be treated with advice, the CCG points out. 

Somerset clinical commissioning group (CCG) has started a campaign to increase the role of pharmacy in treating minor illnesses. 
The ‘Ask Your Pharmacist’ campaign points out that advice and over-the-counter remedies are available without needed to visit general practice or A&E. 
Many minor ailments, such as earache, stomach upsets and sore throats could be treated with advice, the CCG points out. 
Dr David Rooke, Somerset CCG chairman said: “We all live busy lives, but with a little advice and a few basic over-the-counter remedies stored safely in the home, we could all save ourselves a lot of time and inconvenience the next time minor illness leaves us feeling a bit poorly.” 
Peter Whitaker, chairman of the Somerset Pharmaceutical Committee said: ““Pharmacists are highly qualified healthcare professionals who have undertaken five years of education and training in their specialist role.  Therefore they have the expert knowledge when it comes to prescription of over-the-counter medicines. 
“There are still many people who don’t realise that pharmacists have the skills and expertise to help you with advice on quitting smoking, healthy eating and losing weight and patients who take regular prescription medicines can also ask their pharmacist to review the medicines they use.” 
Earlier this week an independent report concluded that refocusing pharmacists as care-givers could reduce demand on GPs, out-of-hours services and hospitals. 
The NHS spends £12 billion a year on medicines but 30-50% of patients do not take them as prescribed, and 6% of emergency admissions to hospital are caused by avoidable reactions to medicines.

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