Pharmacy funding for contractors in England will remain unchanged from April, it has been announced, giving time for PSNC and NHS England to undergo negotiations, which have not yet begun.
Interim funding levels will be maintained at the 2017/18 level, with no changes to the Single Activity Fee, Establishment Payments or Pharmacy Access Scheme Payments.
Pharmacy contractors have also been told that the Community Pharmacy Seasonal Influenza Advanced service will be re-commissioned for 2018/19.
PSNC chief executive Sue Sharpe said:
“We hope to commence negotiations with the NHS for 2018/19 community pharmacy funding very shortly, and we hope this will include discussion on PSNC’s proposals for the development of community pharmacy services. As yet we cannot speculate on the negotiations, but we are continuing to press the benefits and value of community pharmacies to the NHS.
Community pharmacy contractors are under enormous financial pressure at the moment and PSNC’s priority in the negotiations will be to seek the best financial result possible for all community pharmacy contractors. Our objective will be to agree arrangements that will safeguard the future of this invaluable network of healthcare providers.”
As part of the announcement, pharmacies are required to implement two changes relating to Quality Payment arrangements. Opening hours in NHS Choices must include Bank Holidays and there is a clarification on the use of NHS mail.