East Sussex pharmacies supporting palliative care

East Sussex LPC has helped many patients through a successful ‘Just in Case’ Palliative Care Service. This provides terminally ill patients with a sealed box of medicines that treat symptoms such as pain or anxiety. The box is designed to provide the patient and carer with peace of mind, knowing that essential medicines are on-hand if required. The symptoms of a terminal illness are often distressing for the patient and carer, particularly if they present outside regular GP or pharmacy hours. Provision of the ‘Just in Case’ box has the added potential benefit of easing pressure on A&E and out-of-hours clinics It supports patients by controlling distressing symptoms of a terminal illness.

East Sussex LPC worked together with its local CCG to streamline reporting requirements, make payment and labelling processes more straightforward, and simplify the list of medicines. The resulting service specification was more straightforward and also provides fair remuneration to pharmacies at £12 per box provided plus prescription fee, with the CCGs covering the cost of the box itself. The service was launched it to pharmacists at a joint LPC and CCG meeting aimed at encouraging participation. After a successful first year the service has been recommissioned by two of the three local CCGs and it is open to all local pharmacies to take part.