Government approves further expansion of role of pharmacists 

The Cabinet has approved new legislative amendments to expand pharmacists’ responsibilities, including the ability to prescribe. The Expert Taskforce on Pharmacy in Ireland has been reviewing the role of pharmacists in primary care and has made recommendations for changes. Health Minister Stephen Donnelly has secured approval for an amendment to the Health (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill to introduce pharmacist prescribing. Further recommendations are expected from the taskforce soon. Changes have already been made to extend prescription validity from six to 12 months. Implementation of pharmacist prescribing will require regulatory changes and training pathways for pharmacists, but is seen as a positive development for the health service and patients.

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