Health services

ICON_CP2025 Health Services
Provide health services in the pharmacy, including, medication management, preventative health, screening and chronic disease support.


What is the pathway?

Increase the provision of health-related services in the pharmacy, including, but not limited to:

  1. Personalised medication advice, management, monitoring and safety
  2. Chronic disease support
  3. General health advice, including preventative health and point-of-care testing
  4. Disease screening and risk assessment
  5. Vaccinations

Why make the change?

Expanding subsidised and patient-funded health services will demonstrate your pharmacy is a health destination and open up
new revenue streams, reducing your dependency on medicines supply. Services that enhance patient convenience and health
outcomes or which reduce patient out-of-pocket costs and increase the overall efficiency of the health system will be welcomed
by patients, stakeholders, other health providers and funders alike.

The opportunity for pharmacies

The Guild will continue advocating for an enhanced role for community pharmacy in primary care, focusing on evidence-based
services that complement pharmacies’ core medicines role. These services may be funded from community pharmacy agreements, broader government funding sources, private providers or patients, with market research showing patients are willing to pay if they see value in the services offered. Individual services may vary between pharmacies depending on local needs. Establishing the in pharmacy infrastructure and systems to deliver services (e.g. consultation rooms, recording, booking, referral and payment platforms, trained staff ) will enable pharmacies to maximise services opportunities and establish themselves as health destinations.

What happens if I don't make the change?

If community pharmacies do not proactively look to meet their patients’ needs for health services, then others will do so,
potentially restricting pharmacies to medicines supply and broader retail, both of which are susceptible to funding pressures and
increased competition. Without services, community pharmacies have less ability to differentiate and build patient loyalty as they
compete solely on price and convenience.

Champion

You are not alone – champion story
Elise Apolloni – Capital Chemist, Canberra, ACT

Elise is widey recognised as a leader in the introduction of professional services in her community pharmacy and she understands just how important these are to the pharmacy business, staff and patients.

Capital Chemist provides mental health first aid, medical grade consultation rooms and diabetes education. Equipping staff with the necessary training and professional skills has been essential, but it has paid off as members of the community go out of their way to visit Elise’s pharmacy.

Elise believes that the health services pathway provides an optimal opportunity for continuous improvement.

“At the end of the day community pharmacy is about the community and people. When you put the patient at the front you will innovate and create a health care destination providing the services that fulfil their needs.”

Read more

Market research

Patients strongly support expanded health services in community pharmacy. Some 58 per cent say they would probably or definitely use pharmacies for their health services needs, and 49 per cent indicate that these services would make them use pharmacy more frequently. Over half of patients support paying for expanded health services. Services of most interest are those related to testing, monitoring and vaccinations, including annual flu shots.

Orima Market Research Report - September 2018 (members only)

Quick wins

Research what primary health services your pharmacy could provide which have a high level of patient demand but are not currently readily accessible in the local community.

What can I do now?

  1. Research what primary health services may have high local patient demand but are not readily accessible
  2. Talk to your patients, analyse your dispensing and point of sale data and study local population health data
  3. Consider the infrastructure and staffing required to deliver health services in your pharmacy
  4. Conduct initial planning, establish budgets, discuss with your team how you will market your services
  5. Develop standardised systems, processes and materials for booking, delivering and recording health services
  6. Understand and organise the resources and training required for the provision of new health services
  7. Run trials to test patient demand and potential pricing, collaborating with GPs and other health providers
  8. Consider trialling extended trading hours or offering after-hours appointments to meet patient care needs
  9. Consider acquiring point of care testing devices and other equipment to enable service provision
  10. Put in place an evaluation plan

Who do I talk to?

Talk to your local Guild Branch to utilise the Guild’s Opportunity Analysis. Go to the myGuild portal to access the Pharmacy Viability Tool. Utilise the relevant QCPP business plans and checklists.

More information

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Page last updated 31 July 2019