We welcomed delegates and speakers to our biggest project for 2017, Pharmacy & Medicines Optimisation. A huge thank you to all who participated in the Provider and Commissioner project and to all attendees and speakers.
Following a swift introduction from Stephen Watkins, NHSBN Director, we welcomed Professor Mike Hannay, Managing Director of East Midlands AHSN. Mike spoke about improving outcomes, reducing variation and driving down cost through innovation. This was built on by our second speaker, Colette Goldrick, Director NHS Engagement & Northern Ireland for The Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI). Both Mike and Colette also touched on the subject of adoption & spread vs. research & development.
The first good practice speaker, Jackie Reynolds, representing Aneurin Bevan University Health Board (ABUHB) followed the 2017 benchmarking findings for the Commissioning section of the Pharmacy project. Jackie remained with the theme of reducing variation to improve healthcare.
A slight change to the programme saw Andrew Davies, Professional Lead for Hospital Pharmacy at NHS Improvement provide a speedy presentation on Hospital Pharmacy Transformation. He focused on optimising the use of the medicines and developing infrastructure to support an efficient supply chain, reiterated later by Mary Evans, Chair of NHS Digital PSCSU Board. Andrew also focused on the importance of working collaboratively across regions, a main theme of the day.
We were delighted to host Catherine Duggan, Director of Professional Development for the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, for a second year. A key part of Catherine’s presentation was the development of aspiring Chief Pharmacists.
Aidan Rawlinson, Programme Manager at NHSBN, presented a first look at the 2017 benchmarking data for the Provider section of the Pharmacy project. We are grateful to all Trusts participating in this project and the quantity of data provided. Stephen Watkins selected a couple of interesting statistics for Twitter, such as:
· England’s £16.8 billion annual medicines cost is now split equally between primary and secondary care, and
· Medicines costs have reduced by 0.5% in primary care last year, with acute medicines costs growing by 6%.
Representatives from the Wales Centre for Pharmacy Professional Education, Laura Doyle, and Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board, Julian D’Enrico, spoke about 3-sector Integrated Pre-registration training. It was encouraging to hear the work that Wales have implemented, the objective of which is to have a complete understanding of the patient journey with the pharmacist involved from the beginning.
Professor Liz Kay, Clinical Director Medicines Optimisation for Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, followed with a presentation on Yorkshire Hospitals combined stores. The main aim of the regional collaboration was to reduce operating costs and improve service levels, a challenge faced by many Trusts.
We came to a close with a presentation from Gareth Adams, Greater Manchester Hospital Pharmacy Transformation Collaborative, and Rahul Singal, King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, who reiterated the subject of collaboration across STPs to reduce variation.
The programme for the Pharmacy conference was extensive and we were really pleased to see the interaction and discussion both online and in the room. There were a number of themes throughout the conference, giving a consistent view of the current aims and future developments for those in the pharmacy and medicines optimisation fields.