“Walk in my Shoes” - MSoP evaluates Pharmacy and GP Relationships

“Walk in my Shoes” - MSoP Evaluation Demonstrates the Patient Safety Impact of Improving Pharmacy and GP Relationships.

27th June 2016


In 2015 Medway School of Pharmacy (MSoP) was invited to evaluate NHS Lewisham Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG)'s, 'Walk in my Shoes' programme. The final report produced by MSoP’s Dr Trudy Thomas and PhD student, Michelle Cashin-Cox has contributed to the CCG being successfully shortlisted for a prestigious HSJ Patient Safety 2016 award in the Improving Safety in Primary Care Category.

The “Walk in my Shoes” programme was created and facilitated by the CCG to offer GPs and pharmacists the opportunity to experience life in primary care from a different perspective, and to learn with and from each other in an effort to build relationships, improve systems and identify solutions together. GPs visited community pharmacies to gain practical insight into the community pharmacy working environment and in return community pharmacists spent time in GP practices to better understand the working environment of general practice.

42 General Practices and 45 pharmacies in Lewisham signed up to be involved in the programme. It took place from January to April 2015, and there were more than 160 exchange visits between GP practices and pharmacies. Each visit resulted in personal reflection forms and organisational action plans with a 1 year follow-up implementation plan that have been analysed by the MSoP team. The visits prompted a number of positive changes that have helped improve patient experience, reduce the likelihood of errors, increase efficiency and assist in the reduction of medicine waste. The CCG is planning on-going support for the initiative based on recommendations from the MSoP team.

Martin Wilkinson, Chief Officer at NHS Lewisham CCG said, "Being shortlisted for a HSJ Patient Safety Award is an honour.  This was an innovative project that has had a positive impact on processes and relationships between our GPs and community pharmacists.  Most of all, we have been able to improve both patient safety and patient experience, with better communications and more co-ordinated care across the GP/ Pharmacy interface. Walk in my shoes is winner in my eyes".

The final award winners will be announced at a ceremony in July with Michelle from MSoP in attendance.

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