The New Brunswick Pharmacists’ Association (NBPA) is encouraged to see funding to expand pharmacist assessment and prescribing services included in the provincial budget.
The NBPA has worked closely with the provincial government to increase access to health care for New Brunswickers. While we know pharmacists can assess and treat for over 30 minor ailments, only a handful of these are currently publicly covered services for patients. Investing in more health services via community pharmacies provides, as we see in this budget, another step toward more accessible care and improving the lives of New Brunswickers.
“Pharmacists are primary health-care practitioners, highly trained and highly accessible in person in your community,” said NBPA President Andrew Drover.
“For years, pharmacists have been qualified to assess and treat many conditions, and we hope this is the first step in further expanding coverage for services delivered in pharmacies.”
The national trend is toward more pharmacy-led primary health care, as provinces recognize the value of expanding the role of pharmacy professionals to alleviate strain on their health-care systems. Here in New Brunswick, when community pharmacy is fully integrated into primary care, thousands of New Brunswickers visiting our already overcrowded doctors’ offices, clinics, and emergency departments will have the option to receive treatment that is timely, accessible, and close to home at a pharmacy of their choice
In the meantime, NBPA will continue to advocate for increased access to primary care at community pharmacies.