Pharmacists offer to deliver vascular checks instead of GPs

Pharmacists are actively approaching PCTs over plans to deliver the DoH's vascular checks programme in a move that could cut out GPs.

The DoH wants vascular checks for all adults aged 40-74 to assess their risk of developing heart disease, strokes, diabetes and CKD.

The programme will be implemented during 2009/10 and by 2012 the DoH expects three million people a year to have been offered the check.

But a number of leading cardiovascular GPs have raised concerns about being sidelined in the rollout of the vascular checks programme.

The concerns have since prompted the Primary Care Cardiovascular Society (PCCS) to launch a manifesto to encourage more GPs to become involved in how the programme is run.

Dr Terry McCormack, outgoing chairman of the PCCS and a GP in North Yorkshire, said: ‘There is a feeling that GPs have been sidelined when it comes to vascular checks.

‘The DoH has handed it over to the PCTs to develop locally, but a lot of PCTs are not going to use primary care for this work.’
The feeling is that the PCTs will take on large contacts with pharmacies instead of with GPs, he said.

sanjay.tanday@haymarket.com

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