The White Paper "Pharmacy in England; Building on Strengths—Delivering the Future" looks at aligning the future provision of pharmaceutical services and sets out proposals to look at the market entry criteria for doctors and community pharmacists, (copies of this are available in the Library). No final decision has been taken over any criteria to be used in considering future arrangements for patients to receive pharmaceutical services from their general practitioner (GP).
A consultation paper will be launched later this summer following the recent publication of the primary and community care strategy—"NHS Next Stage Review" (copies of this publication have already been deposited in the Library). This will put forward possible options to address these issues and will contain an initial assessment of the impact of any proposals on patients, the national health service and contractors.
The Department has carried out a number of listening events around the country in the past two months on the Pharmacy White Paper. As part of this, over 120 dispensing GPs and practice managers attended these events. In addition, The Department's officials have met with representatives of GPs and pharmacists to discuss these matters and a large amount of correspondence has been received on the proposals contained in the White Paper.