HEAltH & WEllBEIng 2026: DElIVERIng togEtHER

Despite the snap election and cessation of Assembly business, the Department of Health’s (DoH) work goes on. Health Minister Michelle o’neill had issued a consultation on Criteria for Reconfiguring Health and Social Care Services in northern Ireland. the paper set out a list of criteria which the DoH proposes to use to reshape systems and services. UCA, on behalf of members, responded to this consultation, urging the Department to reconfigure the health service to achieve meaningful change, and allow innovative services to evolve to meet patient need.

UCA President Cliff McElhinney stressed that “Community and primary care pharmacy can contribute to the evolution of health services in northern Ireland and that UCA’s hoped that the new Community Pharmacy Contract will provide a framework which can harness the sector’s capabilities and allow pharmacy to work effectively in an integrated care model.”


Patient safety is always paramount in pharmacy, but how the sector deals with the recording of errors or near misses has been given renewed focus given recent events. UCA is currently conducting a trial of software designed to help pharmacies manage patient safety issues. look out in the next issue for the outcomes from this trial.


on 2nd March, northern Ireland voters will once again be going to the polls. We will have fewer MlAs returned due to the changes to the electoral areas. We may all get a different MlA for our home or business constituency, but one thing’s almost certain, we will have a new Health Minister now that Michelle o’neill has taken over the Sinn fein leadership. What does that mean for health & pharmacy? It may all depend on which party takes the Ministerial portfolio post-election. UCA President Cliff McElhinney called on our MlAs to take the party politics out of health and agree a cross-party approach to the strategy currently on the table. the last thing the health service needs is another review. Alliance Health Committee member Paula Bradshaw, a guest of the UCA at our recent Presidents Ball, gave UCA reassurances that all parties were on board with the strategy. But of course anything can happen in an election campaign, so get to know your local candidates and MlAs once elected and make your views known.


thank you to everyone who has held raffles, sold reindeer dust, zipped the lagan, knitted, baked and ran over the past two years in aid of UCA charity partner Age nI. At the Presidents Ball, Age nI’s Siobhan Casey announced that pharmacies had raised a grand total of £28K since the partnership started in 2015. In appreciation of this support, Age nI gave certificates to Whitehouse Pharmacy Derry for fundraising Pharmacy of the Year, Individual fundraiser/ Supporter of the Year – Siobhan Mcnulty from Melvin Pharmacy, garrison and Carrickfergus Health Centre Pharmacy as Referral Pharmacy of the year.

Be part of it

The Ulster Chemists’ Association’s Pharmacy Management and Leadership Programme

Gain a Level 5 Certificate in Leadership and Management

BENEFITS TO YOU • Use core management techniques to drive better results • Develop your own ability to lead, motivate and inspire • Complete your annual CPD requirements • Provide you with strategic leadership, decision making and problem solving techniques

• Benchmark your own managerial skills • Raise your profile within your organisation • Become professionally accredited through the Institute of Leadership and Management

BENEFITS TO YOUR EMPLOYER/PHARMACY • Help to foster business improvement • Encourage strategic thinking for business development • Increase ability to resolve problems and issues • Benchmark your own organisational standards against others • Develop your staff team

The programme will cover the following six key areas during six one day training sessions:

• Leadership and management of staff and processes • Financial management throughout the year • Managing your environment and promoting change • Managing resources, governance within the pharmacy and designing SOP’s

• Managing information and evaluating business success • Developing services and managing customer relations

Support provided from the course facilitators Paul Murray and Ashley Boreland.

For additional information, joining the programme and costs please contact Adrienne at UCA phone number:

(L-R): Host Zoe Salmon, UCA Secretary Adrienne Clugston, Peter Corry, Sandra Cooke Whitehouse Pharmacy and Siobhan Casey, Age NI

02890 656576

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