Cochrane hails new pharmacist scheme

Alliance MLA Judith Cochrane has welcomed a new scheme to put pharmacists in GP practices in order to ease the burden on doctors.

The scheme, announced by the Health Minister yesterday (Monday), will allow better management of some chronic conditions, as well as giving pharmacists the ability to do more advising and prescribing of medicines.

East Belfast MLA Mrs Cochrane said giving much-needed support to GPs was one of the findings of a recent survey she carried out among doctors.

“Among the other most commonly-raised topics among GPs was the time spent trying to contact pharmacists after hospital discharge. This scheme should help reduce hours lost trying to get in touch with pharmacists.

“Pharmacists do an excellent job and their expertise should be used to their full potential. By putting them into GP practices, it will increase the vital role GPs play in the local community by taking a massive amount of pressure off them.”

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