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Boots expects pharmacy funding to return to ‘normal levels’ next year

Boots’ senior management expect the ongoing contract negotiations to result in funding returning to “normal levels” next year, C+D has learned.

Discussing the multiple’s latest finances in a conference call last week (June 27) – in which he also discussed plans to close 200 low-performing branches – Walgreens Boots Alliance co-chief operating officer Alex Gourlay said Boots’ parent company is “pretty convinced there’s been underfunding” for the UK’s community pharmacies “in the last period”.

“Working within…the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC), we’re now debating that with the government in a positive way,” Mr Gourlay said, referring to the ongoing negotiations for a new funding contract.

“Of course, we can’t make any further comments until that negotiation is complete,” he added.

Chief financial officer James Kehoe also sounded optimistic, explaining he “expects an improvement” in funding by the final three months of 2019, before a return “to normal levels next year”.

Minister promises ‘fair settlement’

Addressing contractors at the National Pharmacy Association conference last month (June 20), pharmacy minister Seema Kennedy said she is “committed to working with PSNC to deliver a fair [funding] settlement for NHS services”.

This settlement will “reward those pharmacies committed to delivering a wide range of health services and better quality”, Ms Kennedy added.

Do you think the funding cuts will be reversed?

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