Improving the outpatient experience for over a decade

Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust celebrated the 10-year anniversary of its partnership with LloydsPharmacy at a special event held on Wednesday 22nd January.

In 2009, LloydsPharmacy became the first external provider to deliver outpatient pharmacy services on behalf of an NHS Trust when it opened an outpatient dispensary (OPD) at Royal Liverpool University Hospital. At the time, this partnership was the first of its kind, but LloydsPharmacy has since expanded it to 45 other acute hospitals across England.

The partnership has developed over the last 10 years to improve patient experience, increase efficiency and reduce waiting times. The pharmacy has grown from fulfilling 300 items per week in 2009 to over 1650 items per week in 2019.

Professor Alison B Ewing, clinical director of pharmacy Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust said: “Outpatients at the Royal Liverpool University Hospital have benefitted over the last decade with quicker access to medicines as a result of our work with LloydsPharmacy and it was great to celebrate this milestone with the team. We have recently opened a second LloydsPharmacy at Aintree University Hospital so outpatients there can also enjoy quicker access to medicines, which has the added benefit of freeing up our hospital pharmacy team to focus on inpatients. The service has also freed up valuable pharmacist and technician time in the hospital dispensaries which has improved the quality of inpatient care.”

The anniversary was marked with a special celebratory event at the hospital on Wednesday the 22nd of January. It was attended by patients, employees and senior representatives from the Trust and McKesson UK (parent company of LloydsPharmacy). The event was a celebration of the success of the partnership, including coffee and cake for attendees.

McKesson UK CEO, Toby Anderson commented: “We are incredibly proud of our partnership with Liverpool University Hospitals Trust and the impact it has had on patients. The future of healthcare in this country relies on innovative thinking and partnerships like this. Our LloydsPharmacy outpatient dispensaries are all about freeing up capacity for the hospital to focus on more urgent care needs and we are excited to build on the 10 years of success we’ve had at Royal Liverpool so far.”

In a recent survey, 87% of patients reported waiting less than 20 minutes to receive their prescription compared to 30-40 minutes prior to the service starting. 93% of patients were ‘satisfied’ or ‘very satisfied’ with their visit to the pharmacy.

As part of the continued growth of the partnership, the LloydsPharmacy OPD at Royal Liverpool now dispenses and delivers IVF medicines direct to patients’ homes or local clinics on behalf of Liverpool Women’s Hospital. This service provides patients with more choice of how and when they receive their medication. The Trust has also recently opened another LloydsPharmacy OPD at its Aintree Hospital site.

Toby continued: “The extension of this partnership is testament to what we’ve achieved over the last 10 years. It shows what can be accomplished when experts on both sides come together to build something that really works for patients.”