A new GP contract for Scotland was launched on 1 April 2018.
The contract, developed by the Scottish government and the British Medical Association in Scotland, was formally accepted on 18 January 2018, and will be backed by £100m of Scottish government funding in 2018–2019.
As part of the contract, a national pharmacotherapy service will be rolled out over three years, which will ultimately provide pharmacist and pharmacy technician support to the patients of every Scottish GP practice.
Currently, pharmacists and pharmacy technicians hold posts in around one third of Scottish GP practices.
The pharmacotherapy service will see GP pharmacists dealing with acute and repeat prescribing. They will also undertake additional services, including medicines reconciliation, medicines safety reviews, polypharmacy reviews and monitoring of patients on high-risk medicines. Specialist pharmacists may also manage clinics for certain conditions, including chronic pain and heart failure.
Writing in The Pharmaceutical Journal in March 2018, Rose Marie Parr, Scotland’s chief pharmaceutical officer, said the number of pharmacist training posts would increase from 170 to 200 per year from 2018 to 2019 to help deliver the pharmacotherapy service.