AMR and Pharmacy First

Pharmacy press

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) often comes up as a concern with regards to giving community pharmacists the ability to prescribe antibiotic via PGDs. The Government has indicated an awareness of this in the announcement of the new national Pharmacy First service, saying that it will “be closely monitoring the Pharmacy First service post-launch, particularly in relation to antimicrobial supply to guard against the risk of increasing antimicrobial resistance, and the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) will commission an evaluation” (source: Pharmacy First letter to contractors).

We were asked to comment on this, particularly in relation to our recent article looking at antimicrobial stewardship within the Community Pharmacist Consultation Service (CPCS): Case study: Demonstrating antimicrobial stewardship in community pharmacy

Our Director of NHS Services, Alastair Buxton, said:

“Antimicrobial resistance is considered to be one of the biggest risks to the future of modern healthcare and mitigations against it have to be part of any new services being commissioned by the NHS, whoever is providing them. We know that community pharmacists can and will manage this risk and are pleased to have successfully persuaded the NHS of this, but we should not be surprised to see the health service wanting to monitor this: this is something they are actively monitoring across the NHS.”