Around 40 community pharmacies in the North Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent LPC area are participating in a pilot scheme aimed at helping osteoarthritis patients manage their pain.
As part of the pilot, pharmacists in Stoke-on-Trent, North Staffordshire and South Staffordshire are helping osteoarthritis patients aged 45 and over develop pain management strategies, touching on lifestyle factors such as exercise and weight loss as well as the appropriate use of medication to help relieve pain symptoms. Consultations may be carried out both virtually and in person.
Pharmacies taking part in the scheme will receive £50 upon completion of a training course offered by Keele University – which will use findings from the pilot as part of its joint pain research project – as well as a £15 fee for every patient consultation.
North Staffordshire and Stoke-On-Trent LPC chief operating officer Tania Cork has said there is enough funding in place for 50 pharmacies to carry out 16 consultations each, and that the pilot will run at least until there have been 600 consultations.