Tackling high blood pressure

Pharmacy Voice, in partnership with Public Health England, has published Tackling high blood pressure through community pharmacy.

This report examines how the community pharmacy sector can expand and enhance its contribution to the national agenda around preventing, detecting and managing hypertension.

The report highlights existing best practice in tackling high blood pressure through community pharmacy that readers could adopt within their organisations or communities to improve the health and wellbeing of the population. It makes twelve recommendations for maximising the community pharmacy contribution to preventing, detecting and managing hypertension, recommending that:

1.     A framework is developed and supported by national leadership bodies, to help embed and sustain commissioned public health services that tackle high blood pressure across the community pharmacy network.

2.     A long-term, coordinated blood pressure awareness campaign is planned and delivered across the community pharmacy network, as part of a whole-system national initiative.

3.     All STP leads, local commissioners and primary care providers integrate community pharmacy based blood pressure testing and diagnosis into their disease prevention and management strategies.

4.     All community pharmacies are equipped with a validated blood pressure monitor and have staff trained in how to use them effectively.

5.     Commissioning of NHS Health Checks from community pharmacy is more actively promoted and supported

6.     Partnerships between employers and community pharmacy teams to deliver workplace health initiatives are encouraged and supported.

7.     Primary care organisations and CCGs take action to ensure medicines-related support and advice for people taking antihypertensive medicines is better coordinated between general practice and community pharmacy.

8.     The extension of community pharmacy blood pressure services to include commencement of treatment and management of diagnosed hypertension is tested and evaluated.

9.     Community pharmacy teams are encouraged to increase their support of home blood pressure testing and monitoring.

10.   Community pharmacy teams are enabled to access and share data (with consent) via an integrated patient records system, and to exchange electronic referrals with GPs and other healthcare providers.

11.   Current community pharmacy practice in relation to blood pressure prevention, testing, diagnosis and management is audited.

12.   A programme of research and evaluation is established to ensure the outcomes of community pharmacy-based interventions to tackle high blood pressure are monitored and understood.

View the blood pressure report here

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