Special Interest

What is PCDT?

The Pharmacy Act (Act 101 of 1965) permits Pharmacists to dispense Schedule 1 and 2 medicines without a prescription. In an effort to expand the scope and impact of pharmaceutical care services provided on Primary Health Care level in a pharmacy and increase access to Primary Health Care with regards to the treatment of minor ailments and the management of specific chronic diseases, Primary Health Care and drug Therapy (PCDT) supplementary training has been developed. After completion of the post graduate supplementary training, pharmacists are issued with a permit in terms of Section 22A(15) of the Medicines Act, as amended. With the additional registering of a Practice Number, a PCDT pharmacist may then claim for the services rendered from Medical Aids for remuneration.

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The Scope of Practice of a PCDT Pharmacist

In addition to the acts and services which form part of the scope of practice of the pharmacist as prescribed in terms of Regulation 3 and 4 of the Regulations relating to the practice of Pharmacy, a pharmacist who has completed the PCDT supplementary training and who has been issued with the relevant section 22A(15) permit and in offering the PCDT services according to the Approved List of Conditions published by the National Department of Health from time to time, may perform the following acts and services:

(a) consultation with patients, in an approved primary health care setting, which includes:

  • comprehensive patient history taking;
  • physical examination (excluding internal and external genitourinary examination);
  • assessment of diagnosed and undiagnosed conditions listed in the Primary Health Care (PHC) Standard Treatment Guidelines (STG) and Essential Medicines List (EML);
  • ordering, conducting and interpretation of applicable diagnostic and laboratory tests for the purposes of the above;
  • interpretation of the assessment/diagnosis;
  • decision on safe and appropriate therapy;
  • prescribing of medicines for the conditions identified for the purposes of PCDT as per PHC STG and EML List published by the National Department of Health from time to time;
  • monitoring of the outcomes of therapy; and
  • referral to another health care provider where necessary.
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