NHS England and NHS Improvement


NHS England and NHS Improvement  (NHSE/I) locally are part of  the Midlands Region; they are based at a number of locations across the Midlands, including Anglesey House in Rugeley:

Anglesey House
Wheelhouse Road
Towers Plaza
Rugeley
Staffordshire
WS15 1UL

Tel: 0113 825 3712

Pharmacy Advisor

The Pharmacy Advisor NHSE/I locally is Andy Pickard.  You can get in touch with Andy at the Anglesey House office as above, preferably by email: a.pickard@nhs.net or telephone 01138254620.

CD Accountable Officer

The CD Accountable Officer for South Staffordshire is also part of the Midlands region of NHSE/I – full contact details can be found by clicking the above link.

COVID PHARMACY SOP – SUPPORTING INFORMATION

NHSE/I are seeking to take a very pragmatic view of how we work with contractors to manage and support very difficult operating conditions and we would ask that contractors communicate with them any concerns with regard opening hours sooner rather than later so that we can work to plan services and ensure you are supported locally.

Should you have a requirement due to concerns over safety or efficacy of service delivery, at times of extreme pressure, require to implement the SOP allowance to work behind closed doors or to apply to amend your opening hours or even temporarily close, the following processes should be undertaken:

CLOSED DOOR WORKING FOR SPECIFIC PERIODS IN ANY ONE DAY

If you think you need to implement behind closed doors working allowance for a Specific period in any one day onlyNO prior consent from the Midlands NHS England & Improvement Team needs to be obtained in advance.

However the following points should be followed –

  • This decision is a Professional Decision taken by the Responsible Pharmacist, and must be regarded as such, with the decision and the reasons behind this decision recorded (where possible on the Responsible Pharmacists Log)
  • The Responsible Pharmacist must contact NHSE&I by emailing the West Midlands generic inbox to inform us that this action has been taken with a brief description of the reasoning and circumstances  england.pharmacy-westmidlands@nhs.net – this is in order for NHSE&I to record these amendments to contractual arrangements and monitor provision of services across our areas
  • Your Superintendent Pharmacist / Area Manager etc must be contacted and informed of this decision to allow them to support you to resolve the concerns
  • You MUST maintain access for patients for urgent access as detailed in the SOP and ensure there is information available to patients as to how to do this
  • You MUST inform your LPC of your decision to close
  • The allowance is only for a maximum of up to two and a half hours per day and must be utilised within the guidance below
  • This is to allow the pharmacy to continue to provide services behind closed doors and not to facilitate a cessation of all services during that period

A maximum of 3 episodes of Closed Doors working for specific periods in any one day is permitted. This cannot exceed more than 2.5 hours per day, and any subsequent episodes must be agreed with NHSE&I.

WORKING BEHIND CLOSED DOORS FOR MORE THAN ONE DAY

If the Responsible Pharmacist determines that the working behind closed doors may be required to be enacted for a period of more than one day – prior consent from Midlands NHSE&I Team needs to be obtained in advance.

The following points must be followed –

  • This decision is a Professional Decision taken by the Responsible Pharmacist and must be recorded as a professional decision with the reasons behind this outcome recorded
  • The Responsible Pharmacist must APPLY to NHSE&I for consent to take this action using a Temporary Opening Hours Application Form (as attached) detailing that you need to enact the “Working Behind Closed Doors” policy. This must be emailed to the generic inbox to inform us that this action is required and why. Please mark your email with the title “URGENT – Working behind closed doors policy application” england.pharmacy-westmidlands@nhs.net
  • Your Superintendent Pharmacist / Area Manager etc must be contacted and informed of this decision to allow them to support you to resolve the concerns
  • You MUST maintain access for patients for urgent access as detailed in the SOP
  • The allowance is ONLY for a maximum of up to two and a half hours per day and must be utilised within the guidance below
  • This is to allow the pharmacy to continue to provide services behind closed doors and not to facilitate a cessation of all services during that period
  • NHSE&I will determine the date period within which these actions can be taken after which the pharmacy must revert to normalised working patterns and hours or submit a further application
  • If agreed by NHSE&I, you MUST inform your LPC of the agreed terms of the application

Where a pharmacy needs to work behind doors closed to the public it can do so for up to 2.5 hours a day. However, on days where they are expected to be open, all pharmacies will be expected to have their doors open to the public between 10am and 12 noon and 2pm and 4pm as a minimum. The ‘working behind closed doors hours’ must therefore be before 10am, between midday and 2pm or after 4pm.

100-hour pharmacies needing to work behind closed doors due to extreme pressure will be expected to have their doors open from 10am to 12 noon and 2pm to 6pm as a minimum. The ‘working behind closed doors hours’ must therefore be before 10am, between midday and 2pm or after 6pm.

For 100-hour pharmacies, the 2.5 hours still applies on 16-hour trading days. If the 2.5 hours are taken during the 10 -12am and 2 – 6pm periods, then the normal evening closing time must be honoured, and if this is taken during the final 2.5 hours of opening, then there must still be a presence in the pharmacy.

For all pharmacies, working behind closed doors is NOT permission to CLOSE. It must be used to catch up on any backlog in workload.

Unexpected Pharmacy Closures

We know that all of our contractors make every effort to maintain their services to patients, however in the event that you are unable to open your pharmacy when contracted to do so, please ensure that you follow the points below:

  • Provide information to patients, practices and other local healthcare professionals on the closure, how long it is expected to last and how they may be able to access pharmaceutical services from other providers (having checked that alternative providers are trading). It would be helpful to include information at the pharmacy, also on any pharmacy website or social media page, and on telephone voicemail messages.
  • Notify NHS England and NHS Improvement Midlands team – firstly by email to england.pharmacy-westmidlands@nhs.net, and within 24 hours using the form below

Unplanned-Temporary-Suspension-of-Services Form

  • Temporarily update your NHS Choices page where possible to ensure that the current information is accurate.

NHS England Local Professional Network (LPN)

Local Professional Networks have been established in each NHS area covering pharmacy, dentistry and eye health communities.  The remit of the LPN is to ensure that the contribution of these professional groups is maximised in the improvement of outcomes and reduction in inequalities.  LPNs will need to work closely with Strategic Clinical Networks, Academic Health Science Networks, Senates as well as commissioners, providers and patients.  The LPN Single Operating Framework was released in March 2013.

The Staffordshire and Shropshire LPN for pharmacy is chaired by Dr Manir Hussain who is employed on a limited part-time basis by NHSE/I to fulfil this role.  He was formerly Deputy Head of Primary care for Staffordshire CCGs and he is an excellent advocate for the pharmacy profession.

It is the aim of the LPN to work with the Area Team to ensure that pharmacy is seen as part of the NHS team delivering great outcomes for patients in both primary and secondary care and to support patients living with Long Term Conditions.