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Pharmacy is financially 'on its knees', PSNC tells government

Community pharmacy is on its knees financially, the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC) has told the government during funding talks.

PSNC CEO Simon Dukes said the Department of Health and Social Care (DH) “needs to understand what the state of the sector is”.

“I visit a lot of pharmacies and I'm in no doubt…there is no more money to be squeezed out,” he told C+D last week (May 22) after speaking at the Healthcare Distribution Association conference in London.

Mr Dukes has heard about “a number of businesses…either [getting into] debt, using reserves or borrowing money, placing stress on contractors and their families”, he said.

It would be “irresponsible” not to tell the DH about these issues, and “irresponsible” for the DH not to listen, he continued. “It’s part of the dialogue that we should rightly have.”

“Cautious optimism” about negotiations

Mr Dukes has “cautious optimism” about the negotiations for a new pharmacy contract, which officially began last month.

The tone of discussions so far has been “collaborative”, with both the DH and PSNC entering them with a “positive frame of mind”, he said.

Mr Dukes said in an exclusive blog for C+D earlier this month that there are some barriers to trust from both pharmacy and the government.

Read the blog in full to see the big items up for discussion in ongoing funding talks.

How is your pharmacy coping with the funding pressures?

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