Pharmacy First

Updated 6th June 2024

The letter confirming the service launch on 31st January was published on 25th January and can be accessed at CPE’s website here.

Please make sure you are signed up for our newsletters and we will keep you updated on service roll out and local support/resource. You can sign up at the following link: click here to complete the sign up form.

Please also ensure you are receiving Community pharmacy England’s newsletter as we do not duplicate their content.  You can sign up for them here.


The Pharmacy First Service incorporates the former CPCS services and a new element covering seven core conditions. You can read more about Pharmacy First, which consists of the existing emergency medications supply via 111 and CPCS elements (GP and 111 referral) plus seven core conditions, please see Community Pharmacy England Website here: Pharmacy First service – Community Pharmacy England (

The diagram accessible here OVERVIEW-Community-pharmacy-advanced-service-specification-NHS-pharmacy-first-service-  ((c) NHS England) is taken from the service specification and shows how the service is configured in relation to the previous provision. This should be read in conjunction with the service specification and other documents shown on the Community Pharmacy England website linked above.

Community Pharmacy Nottinghamshire have created a page linking to the key documents you need to read  here. Thanks go to them for letting us share this resource link.

Practical Operational Guidance

Promoting the Service

Community Pharmacy England have produced some useful resources for promoting the service. Particularly for the seven clinical conditions. They can be accessed under promoting the service here. Below is a direct link to a useful poster to print and put up in your pharmacy.

POSTER 7 Conditions Good for printing – Pharmacy use – Single Page


We have been working with health system, Healthwatch and Lincolnshire County Council to promote the service effectively using the above resources. We have also produced a leaflet highlighting the benefits for parents, school children and schools, which was circulated in the weekly bulletin to all schools on Friday 7th June. A link to leaflet is below

Draft Leaflet for Schools and Parent Promo Pharmacy First

Pharmacy First: Operational Implementation: What should I be considering?

How will I manage appointments?

You will need to set up a way to manage the use of the consultation room. Use of an appointment booking diary, much like you already do if delivering Flu vaccinations, would be a good idea.

How will I triage patients who walk into the pharmacy without referral?

You will need to brief your staff to identify patients for the seven clinical conditions. The pharmacist will need to establish which patients they want referred to them.

For example, you may want to brief your staff for patients with sinusitis ask how long they have had their symptoms and if less than 10 days continue with your normal self-care advice routine, only involving the pharmacists if there are concerns, red flags or issues relating to medication in line with your sale of medicines protocol.

How will I manage ensuring no referrals are missed?

Make sure you check PharmOutcomes at least 3 times a day.

We recommend you communicate with your local GP Surgery and agree how and when they will refer patients to you – perhaps suggesting an end time for referrals each day to be dealt with that working day.

You can also share with your local practice the briefing here:

This includes the table outlining the seven new core conditions, eligible patients &  treatments as shown below:


How will I manage Locum use?

Locums will need to have signed the PGDs to deliver the Pharmacy First Service. As an LPC we have been working with the system to get as many locums that work in the county trained as possible.

There is now a master PGD and protocol authorisation sheet on the CPE website, allowing Locums to sign in a pharmacy to say they have completed the PGDs efficiently. This can be accessed at the link below:

How will I ensure GPs understand how their patients have been managed?

It is vitally important that appropriate notes are made of the clinical consultation and the outcome on your software system. The system is being launch with a minimum required standard of information being returned to the GP practice, this will improve over time.

How will the IT work?

The service will start with the 4 assured pharmacy companies (PharmOutcomes, Sonar, Cegedim, Positive Solns) having their ‘new’ consultation recording/APIs in place on 31 January.  These companies have been in touch with pharmacy contractors to give them information and PharmOutcomes have a very helpful video Pinnacle Media ( and FAQs which can be accessed here.

To note, the service will not start with GP Connect so pharmacists will initially continue to access patient information via the National Care Records Service (formerly Shared Care Records).  Also, initially the post event message will continue to go from pharmacies to practices in the same way it does now (so in PharmOutcomes via the Post Event Message).  GP Connect will be enabled in the near future.


Online Training

Contractors and locums can access training support on the CliniSkills website here – only pre-recorded sessions were available at the time of writing (Jan 4th 2024) but there is a waiting list for face to face and live webinar sessions in place.

CPPE have lots of supporting resources on their website. The following CPPE webpage gives lots of information about different resources to support the new Pharmacy first service: NHS Pharmacy First service : CPPE. The self-assessment framework (nhs-phrm-first-saf.docx ( on this page gives information about other training providers.


Pharmacy First: Useful Conditions Summary and Local GP Briefing

We have been working with system colleagues and the Local Medical Committee and have produced a briefing for local GPs which can be accessed here.

This includes the following pages, as well as a summary sheet giving an overview of the service, linking to Community Pharmacy England resources and an overview of the mitigations in place around anti-microbial resistance..

We continue to work together with colleagues across the health system in the county to support Pharmacy First roll-out.