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PSNC 'not getting far' in funding negotiations

Chief executive Sue Sharpe is still pushing for more information about government plans to slash the global sum in England

EXCLUSIVE

The Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC) is "not getting very far" in talks with the government over funding cuts, C+D has learned.

PSNC warned last month that it will refuse to negotiate with the Department of Health (DH) and NHS England until the organisations stop "withholding material" about their plans for funding beyond 2017.

PSNC is now in talks with the two groups after receiving "some" extra information, chief executive Sue Sharpe told C+D on Tuesday (February 2). But the negotiator still needs an "enormous amount" more before it can fully understand the government proposals, she said.

Ms Sharpe also cast doubt on whether the DH's consultation on its plan to slash the global sum in England by 6% will be completed by the March 24 deadline. The government is due to make a final decision on where the cuts will fall in April.

"Time is running on. They have a deadline, but we can't accept a deadline that doesn't allow us to do our job for contractors," she told C+D.

Keith Ridge: Possibility for more services

Chief pharmaceutical officer for England Keith Ridge told C+D on the same day that the negotiation process could still result in pharmacists being commissioned to deliver more national services.

If the sector were to propose a way that the reduced £2.63 billion global sum could pay for more pharmacy services, the DH and NHS England would be "silly to walk away from it", Mr Ridge said.

The DH and NHS England want to "do their best for taxpayers, patients and the public" in funding negotiations with PSNC, he added.


More news on the funding cuts...

Keith Ridge: 'I get the frustration' over pharmacy closures

Funding cuts equivalent to 12% 'net' loss over 6 months

Government to slash pharmacy funding by 6%

 

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