Pharmacy First – Working with your GP practice teams

If the Pharmacy First service is to deliver the maximum possible benefit to patients, the NHS and community pharmacies, it is important that there is a strong relationship between community pharmacies and local general practices.

Such strong local relationships will give confidence to general practice teams to make referrals to the Pharmacy First and other community pharmacy services wherever appropriate for patients.

We all know achieving long-term changes in practice can take time and consequently the work to embed referrals from general practice to Pharmacy First will in most cases need to be sustained over several months or perhaps longer.

We have received positive feedback from many LPCs and pharmacy teams about how local community pharmacy/general practice relationships are driving a good volume of referrals and benefits to patients. However, some pharmacy teams are experiencing low levels of referrals or none at all.

Previous experience from the rollout of GP referrals to the Community Pharmacist Consultation Service is that sustained effort may be required to ensure that referrals are made and continue to be made over the following months.

To support pharmacy owners, their teams and LPCs to keep engaging with local general practice colleagues, we have published some new resources and updated existing resources.

New resources

Updated resources

We have also updated our Pharmacy First: Information for GP practice teams page with more information and resources for GP practice teams.

We would like to hear from pharmacy teams how they are getting on with the Pharmacy First service and, in particular, any learning you have about how to work effectively with general practices which could be shared with other pharmacy teams. Email your feedback to

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