Strand House
2nd Floor
102 Holywood Road
028 9065 6576

Health Minister O'Neill Launches Ten Year Vision for Health & Social Care

Michelle O’Neill launched her vision entitled, ‘Health and Wellbeing 2026: Delivering Together’ after considering the Expert Panel’s report, led by Professor Rafael Bengoa, ‘Systems, Not Structures: Changing Health and Social Care’ which clearly sets out the need for change.


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The Ulster Chemists’ Association welcomes the much-anticipated publication of the Health Minister’s Vision – Health and Wellbeing 2026: Delivering Together. Building on the Bengoa Report, Systems Not Structures, we are encouraged that the Minister’s Vision for transforming NHS systems in Northern Ireland puts an emphasis on public health, prevention and integrated working to ensure that patients receive optimal care and support. Community Pharmacy is well placed to help the Minister realise those goals.

UCA President Cliff McElhinney commented, “The Minister has promised radical change whilst at the same time supporting staff to deliver better patient outcomes, so we expect to see the Minister introducing the innovative, integrated solutions that Integrated Care Partnerships and partnership working with the Voluntary and Community Sector have to offer. In her statement to the Assembly, Minister O’Neill acknowledged and praised the solutions community pharmacy can provide, particularly important in an ageing population. We welcome the commitment to the roll out of access to the Electronic Care Records and it is vital that community pharmacists play a full role in the new multidisciplinary health teams announced by the Minister. The strategy provides opportunities for community pharmacy to expand its role and to contribute to improving outcomes for patients and we look forward to seeing this reflected in the new pharmacy contract under negotiation.

UCA is encouraged that a multi-disciplinary and community care approach is a continuing theme throughout the document. UCA has supported the excellent work coming through from Integrated Care Partnerships in recent years as well as partnership working with the community sector in organisations such as PACT and MEAAP which recently attracted funding from the Dunhill Medical Trust to offer care and support solutions to older people in the Mid and East Antrim area. Community pharmacy is an essential element of the service ensuring our older population receive the best care possible to suit their individual needs.

Community Pharmacy is ready and able to play its part in transforming our health service and during this process of engagement UCA will be taking its message to Minister O’Neill. Executive Committee member Turlough Hamill commented “I was pleased that community pharmacy’s willingness to engage in new services was recognised in this document. Through a highly skilled workforce, community pharmacy is in a prime position to deliver quality services which offer cost-effective solutions to the health service.”   The UCA is looking forward to working with the Minister, her department and other pharmacy bodies throughout this engagement process to help make the Minister’s vision a reality.


UCA President

Adrienne Clugston, Executive Committee & Membership

Kate McKittrick, Prescription Payment Support

Lindsey Jackson, General Enquiries

Mairead Conlon, Representation Pharmacist

Natalie Calder, Administrative Assistant

UCA Office

Ulster Chemists' Association
Strand House
2nd Floor
102 Holywood Road

Tel:  028 9065 6576
Fax:  028 9065 1137


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