Pharmacists have welcomed reform to expand community health care.
The reform expands the number of vaccinations pharmacists can administer, trials pharmacists prescribing medication for urinary tract infections and develops a pilot for trained pharmacists to prescribe medications for a range of other conditions.
Those conditions include skin ailments, ear infections and hormonal contraception.
The state government's aim is to help ease the pressure on emergency departments and GP wait times.
Pharmacy Guild NSW branch official and community pharmacist Judy Plunkett said allowing NSW pharmacists to deliver a broader range of vaccinations was fantastic.
Vaccinations for Japanese encephalitis, hepatitis A and hepatitis B, poliomyelitis, typhoid and shingles can now be delivered by appropriately trained pharmacists.
Ms Plunkett said it was about accessibility.
The NSW urinary tract infections trial follows a successful pilot program north of the border.
Ms Plunkett said the demand was definitely there for such a service in our area.
"It is all about reducing unnecessary trips to accident and emergency," she said.
Ms Plunkett also welcomed a move to increase appropriately trained pharmacists' scope of practice when it came to certain conditions.
Shelly Beach Pharmacy owner Jayd Joseph said given it was taking up to three weeks to see a GP, a lot of his customers were looking forward to pharmacists being able to prescribe medications for certain conditions.
Premier Dominic Perrottet said the proposed reforms aim to relieve pressure on emergency departments and wait times to see a GP, by giving the community more access to primary care services.
Health Minister Brad Hazzard said the trials were in step with pharmacist reforms being implemented in Queensland and would be open to pharmacists in NSW who undertook appropriate additional training.
"While some in the primary care sector have firm views on the role of pharmacists, their positive contribution to the management of the COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated that they are able to deliver more for their communities," Mr Hazzard said.
"NSW Health will work with the pharmacy sector, and its regulators, to inform training to ensure we maintain high safety standards, while also providing the community with more convenience."
But the Australian Medical Association (NSW) has spoken out against expanding the role of pharmacists to treat conditions such as urinary tract infections and prescribing oral contraceptives.
IN OTHER NEWS:
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.