Regs reminder (#5): Health campaigns

Ahead of the 2021/22 contract monitoring process, community pharmacy contractors are reminded of recent changes to the pharmacy Terms of Service. This article is part of a series of reminders.

On 20th October 2020 new NHS regulations were laid to introduce changes to the Terms of Service for pharmacy contractors. PSNC issued a series of 14 Regs explainer articles in November 2020 to help contractors and their teams to understand the new requirements.

Whilst deadlines for compliance with the changes have now passed, the end of 2020 was a particularly busy time for pharmacies, so contractors are advised to review our reminders in preparation for completing the 2021/22 Community Pharmacy Assurance Framework (CPAF) survey, which will include questions on some aspects of the new Terms of Service.

What is required?

Public health campaigns are now described as health campaigns because the focus may be on matters other than healthy living and public health. For example, campaigns may focus on better use of NHS resources, such as highlighting pharmacy advice to support the management of minor illness. NHS England and NHS Improvement (NHSE&I) can require contractors to participate in up to six such campaigns each financial year.

NHSE&I and PSNC have agreed that contractors will be asked to participate in a COVID-19 vaccination campaign as the first mandated health campaign for 2021/22, which contractors must undertake, as part of their NHS contractual requirements.

An existing requirement is that, where requested to do so by NHSE&I, each pharmacy must record the number of people to whom information is provided as part of one of these campaigns. NHSE&I can now also ask for additional information in relation to the campaign.

Any additional information to be requested will initially be discussed with PSNC. The aim of requesting additional information will be to help to evaluate the impact of the campaign and to assist with future policy development. Contractors will be notified of the additional information which needs to be collected and supplied in advance of the campaign starting.

NHSE&I will be able to request that the information on the campaign is provided to them electronically.

Where can I get more support on this?

PSNC will provide further guidance to contractors on any future health campaigns, where additional information is being requested. Contractors can also read the NHSE&I guidance.