With collaboration between GPs and pharmacists being strongly encouraged, pharmacists are moving into GP clinics – but in one Western Sydney location, it’s the GP who is about to move into a pharmacy.
Blooms the Chemist Penrith Plaza is about to open a “MedClinic” medical centre, housed inside the pharmacy.
The initiative was sparked by a recent retail store refurbishment.
“With the prospect to expand next door, we identified the opportunity to expand our health service for our customers,” pharmacist Rachel El-Fawal (right, with retail manager Cassie Elvy, centre, and pharmacist Jacquie Trinh) told the AJP.
“In the past year there has been a rise in feedback from our customers stating that it is difficult to find GP in Penrith located near a pharmacy.
“We see a large percentage of our customers are elderly or less mobile due to health conditions; this posed a serious issue for them to travel, especially during bad weather. Now at Blooms the Chemist they have the convenience of visiting their GP and regular pharmacist in one visit.”
The new MedClinic is aimed at offering these customers the convenience of visiting their GP and pharmacy within the one visit to have their prescriptions dispensed straight away, and to be referred to a trusted GP for further medical counselling if required.
“Furthermore, should our customers be faced with medication changes, a discontinuing product supply line, or limited market supply, our in-house GP will be able to review their medication and advise appropriate alternatives,” says El-Fawal.
“This initiative reinforces the importance of developing a successful, cohesive working relationship between healthcare professionals (GPs and pharmacists) to ultimately benefit patients,” she says.
“The co-existence of the pharmacist and GP under the one roof can help to reduce hospital admissions for minor ailments and the fragmentation of patient care.”
The MedClinic’s ability to foster collaboration between pharmacists and doctors will allow the pharmacy to expand and add an extra dimension to the current Blooms The Chemist HealthChecks service, she says.
“Teamwork, communication and collaboration between health professionals is integral to the safe and effective delivery of healthcare.
“Penrith’s ageing population and the increasing burden of chronic disease presents opportunities for pharmacists and GPs to work collaboratively to improve every patient’s health.
“Now the pharmacist can directly refer Blooms the Chemist customers to our in-store GP for immediate medical treatment when required.”