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Home Industry News Pharmacies could provide pandemic flu jabs under ‘sleeping contract’

Pharmacies could provide pandemic flu jabs under ‘sleeping contract’

16th July 2010

UK pharmacies may be set to provide influenza jabs for patients in the event of a pandemic under new government proposals.

The Department of Health (DoH) is considering implementing plans for a “sleeping contract” for emergency vaccination services, a proposal suggested by former chief medical officer of Wales Dame Deirdre Hine, reports Chemist and Druggist.

In her independent review into the UK’s response into the recent H1N1 influenza outbreak, such a contract could be agreed in advance between GPs and pharmacies and activated should a public health need arise.

She explained: “A sleeping contract would allow difficult negotiations to be undertaken in a more reasonable timeframe than is possible during a pandemic.”

The DoH and Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee head of pharmacy practice Barbara Parsons have since confirmed that this is a possibility that is being discussed.

This comes in the week that the National Pharmacy Association called on the government to give pharmacists a more prominent role in UK healthcare provision.

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