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PDA welcome new Health and Social Care Secretary

Dr Therese Coffey has been appointed as the fifth Health & Social Care Secretary in the last six years by new Prime Minister Liz Truss

Wed 7th September 2022 The PDA

The PDA has welcomed the appointment of Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Therese Coffey, who has inherited her new responsibilities at a critical time and the PDA will be engaging with Dr Coffey and her new ministerial team on the various issues of concern to pharmacists.

The costs of living crisis and fuel prices should of course be a major concern for all cabinet members and as the Secretary of State responsible for England’s NHS, a satisfactory solution to the dispute over NHS pay should be high on Dr Coffey’s agenda.

Other issues include what lessons will be learned from how the Covid-19 pandemic was managed? How will the NHS create the best opportunities as a result of more pharmacist prescribers? What action will be taken on the impact of funding levels in the English community pharmacy contract? and will the government be ambitious enough to look to community pharmacy to respond to the post-pandemic wider health challenges?

Pharmacists stand ready to fully utilise their professional skills and expertise to see more patients for a range of needs and to divert some of the pressures currently being experienced across the health service, including general practice. In doing so, we want to see greater value placed on community pharmacy sector and those who work in it. We would welcome the new Secretary of State emphasising the importance of community pharmacy as a healthcare setting in the heart of each community, not as retail outlets for wholesalers.

Health is a devolved function and the PDA engages with the NHS, civil servants and ministers across all UK nations on an ongoing basis to progress the above and many more issues that matter to pharmacists. We look forward over the next hours and days to the full appointment of the Health and Social Care Ministerial team in Westminster and to building a productive relationship to the benefit of patients, pharmacists and the public.

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