Hypertension Case-Finding Service: Updated service spec published

NHS England has today published the updated specification for the Hypertension Case-Finding Service on their website. This follows the announcement made last week around the service being relaunched to make better use of skill mix and increase provision of ambulatory blood pressure monitoring (ABPM).

It comes alongside the publication of the updated specification and Patient Group Directions (PGDs) for the Pharmacy Contraception Service.

From 1st December 2023, suitably trained and competent pharmacy staff (pharmacists, pharmacy technicians and other non-registered members of the pharmacy team) can provide the service; currently it can only be provided by a pharmacist or pharmacy technician.

When time allows, pharmacy owners will need to consider the role of different staff within the provision of the service, including how the pharmacist will be involved and how they will provide clinical supervision of the service.

In our work with NHS England and the Department of Health and Social Care, other minor changes to the service specification have been agreed.

The service page on our website has been updated to reflect the changes and updated resources have also been published for use by pharmacy owners.

We are working closely with NHS England and the Centre for Pharmacy Postgraduate Education (CPPE) to organise a webinar for pharmacy owners on making the changes to this service and details of this will be announced soon.

Alastair Buxton, Director of NHS Services at Community Pharmacy England, said:

“This significant and very welcome change to the Hypertension Case-Finding Service will allow pharmacy owners to review who in their team is best placed to offer the service, therefore providing a greater opportunity to use skill mix in their teams and free up pharmacists’ time. This should help give pharmacists more opportunity to provide other clinical services such as the recently announced Pharmacy First Service and the Pharmacy Contraception Service.

“Community Pharmacy England had been pressing for healthcare services carried out by pharmacy staff under the supervision of pharmacists to become exempt from VAT for a long time. After achieving this earlier this year, it is a positive step to have come to an agreement with the Department of Health and Social Care and NHS England to allow suitably trained and competent pharmacy staff to provide the service. This recognises the abilities of other members of the pharmacy teams and, with the current pressures on workforce, also acknowledges the importance of skill mix in teams when offering such services.”

 

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