Close control retained by hospital pharmacy departments over homecare provision means clinical teams lack understanding of how the system works and the options open to them.
One leading provider claims misunderstandings among clinical teams about how Homecare works has left many clinicians unaware that they have a choice of which providers to work with.
“Part of the NHS and pharma homecare strategy is to have multiple providers,” explains Chris Carver, Deputy CEO of Healthnet Homecare. “So if a patient is not getting the level of service that they want, it’s perfectly within the clinician’s remit to move that patient to another provider that can deliver a better service. But not many realise that this is an option.”
Further misunderstandings exist around how clinical homecare is funded.
“People read about enormous contracts awarded to clinical homecare companies,” says Carver. “But generally more than 95% of the value of that contract will simply passed-through drug costs, which, even then, the NHS may not be paying directly for – more than 85% of the services are funded by pharmaceutical companies, so, aside from what’s tied up in the cost of the drug, many services are being provided at minimal cost to the NHS.”