Pharmacies in Norway provide some health-care services. Since 2016 patients have received guidance on their inhalation technique. In 2018 Norwegian pharmacies started up "New Medicine Service" for heart patients. In 2020 pharmacists got the right to prescribe influenza vaccines, and in 2022 Norwegian pharmacists got a temporarily right to prescribe vaccines against covid-19.
Checking inhaler technique
The patient shows his inhalation technique and receives advice if errors or a need for changes in the inhalation technique are discovered. The purpose of the service is to secure effect of the medicine. This service was officially launched in 2016 by the Minister of Health and since then over 340 000 technique-guidance’s have been carried out. After a decrease in 2020, we are back on track in 2021. 97 per cent of the pharmacies now have this service.
New Medicine Service
New Medicine Service «Medisinstart» is a new pharmacy service intended for patients with cardiovascular diseases starting up with a new medicine. The service consists of two follow-up consultations with a pharmacist. The first at 1-2 weeks and the second at 3-5 weeks after start of the new medicine. By the end of 2021, more than 30,000 consultations had been made. This is an increase by 44 percent from 2019. “New Medicine Service” has continued to be a popular service through the pandemic because the pharmacists were able to do it by phone.
Vaccination against seasonal flu
Vaccination against seasonal flu in pharmacies has developed from a pilot project in 2017 to a national service in 2020. Despite the authorities' decision to prioritize flu vaccines to risk groups, the interest in taking the flu vaccine in pharmacies has been record high. In 2021, around 970 pharmacies have administered more than 150,000 influenza vaccines, compared to 100,000 influenza vaccines in 2020.
Vaccination against covid-19
The Norwegian Ministry of Health and Care Services adopted a temporary change in regulations that gives pharmacists the right to administer covid-19 vaccines in pharmacies. In December 2021, the first pharmacy signed an agreement with the municipality and administered 150 vaccines during one day.