Layer 1

DH trialling new concessionary prices system as 38 items announced

PSNC: The current system for agreeing price concessions is unsatisfactory
PSNC: The current system for agreeing price concessions is unsatisfactory

The government is "trialling a new approach" to setting price concessions, the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC) has said, as 38 items are agreed for February.

Last month, PSNC said it had “discussed proposals from the Department of Health and Social Care (DH) on changing the system for setting price concessions” at a committee meeting.

The negotiator agreed key principles” for a “fair” system of price concessions, including that “any data used to set prices must relate to the period for which a concession is given”, and “PSNC must be able to challenge proposed price concessions”, it said at the time.

PSNC announced today (February 26) that the DH is “trialling a new” concessionary prices system, “based on gathering timely data from manufacturers”.

Current system is “unsatisfactory”

“The existing system, in which the DH asks wholesalers about current prices, is unsatisfactory,” PSNC director of pharmacy funding Mike Dent said today.

“Using current data from manufacturers as well as wholesalers may provide a better evidential basis, but we need to see if it can be used as part of a system that does deliver reimbursement of what pharmacies are having to pay,” he stressed.

C+D has contacted the DH for more details of the new system.

The announcement comes as the DH and National Assembly for Wales agreed concessionary prices for 38 items for February prescriptions (see below).

PSNC has applied for a similar number of concessions for February as in January, – when 68 were agreed – the negotiator said.

Drug
Strength
Form
Price
Amlodipine
5mg
tablets (28)
£1.12
Amlodipine
10mg
tablets (28)
£1.17
Atorvastatin
80mg
tablets (28)
£1.77
Bicalutamide
50mg
tablets (28)
£21.55
Bicalutamide
150mg
tablets (28)
£21.95
Bisacodyl
5mg
gastro-resistant tablets (60)
£3.30
Chlorpromazine
25mg
tablets (28)
£31.65
Chlorpromazine
50mg
tablets (28)
£32.09
Chlorpromazine
100mg
tablets (28)
£32.23
Citalopram
40mg
tablets (28)
£1.58
Duloxetine
40mg
gastro-resistant capsules (56)
£8.51
Fexofenadine
120mg
tablets (30)
£2.03
Gabapentin
400mg
capsules (100)
£4.49
Glimepiride
1mg
tablets (30)
£2.72
Glimepiride
2mg
tablets (30)
£4.70
Glimepiride
4mg
tablets (30)
£6.51
Hydroxychloroquine
200mg
tablets (60)
£4.78
Lacidipine
2mg
tablets (28)
£2.95
Lacidipine
4mg
tablets (28)
£3.49
Losartan
100mg
tablets (28)
£1.20
Mefenamic acid
500mg
tablets (28)
£31.95
Perindopril erbumine
2mg
tablets (30)
£5.00
Perindopril erbumine
4mg
tablets (30)
£5.10
Perindopril erbumine
8mg
tablets (30)
£6.37
Phenoxymethylpenicillin
125mg/5ml
oral solution (100ml )
£8.64
Phenoxymethylpenicillin
250mg/5ml
oral solution (100ml )
£7.50
Phenoxymethylpenicillin
125mg/5ml
sugar-free oral solution (100ml )
£5.73
Phenoxymethylpenicillin
250mg/5ml
sugar-free oral solution (100ml )
£6.42
Pregabalin
150mg
capsules (56)
£3.44
Pregabalin
200mg
capsules (84)
£4.89
Pregabalin
50mg
capsules (84)
£5.85
Rasagiline
1mg
tablets (28)
£3.04
Rizatriptan
10mg
tablets (3)
£9.88
Sodium cromoglicate
2%
eye drops (13.5ml)
£9.50
Tramadol
50mg
capsules (30)
£0.85
Tranexamic acid
500mg
tablets (60)
£12.86
Trimethoprim
50mg/5ml
sugar-free oral suspension (100ml )
£3.53
Vitamin B co strong
tablets (28)
£3.72
7 Comments
Question: 
Do these prices reflect the ones you have paid in February so far?

Andy Burrells, Community pharmacist

Just spot check invoices.
Have the PSNC request 1000-2000 sets of invoices at random. It would take a few days to collate the data but at least you know it would be pure.

I doubt anyone has anything to hide on the dispensing side of things so I can't see why it would be a problem

A Hussain, Senior Management

Yes.  I look at expiries on hard to source stock and wonder where the hell it has been.  Need a new reply category WWSUCPG. Wholesaler won't supply until concessionary price given.

Z ZZzzzz, Information Technology

So true!

Andrew Paxton, Community pharmacist

If Irbesartan 75mg - or any Irbesartan for that matter, were available, the list price is about 1.5x the Tariff Price at a minimum.  Could that be kept in mind as well?

A Hussain, Senior Management

Revolutionary!!!!

Want to find out what a pharmacy paid for a drug in February?  Ask wholesalers what they charged pharmacies in February rather than what manufacturers charged wholesalers at a random moment in time.

Ben Merriman, Community pharmacist

Quite.  Given there are allegations and rumours regarding exploitation of the market by wholesalers, basing prices on those quoted by manufacturers is nonsense.  Why aren't government working out WHY this is happening? 

For example, why am I receiving a product that has been in short supply for the last eight months with a severalfold increase in cost price with less than six months 'til expiry when it has an expiry two or three years after manufacture?  Did someone just lose them down the back of the sofa?  Is the system we have failing?  Is this an unfortunate coincidence?  Is some stock rotaion policy training needed somewhere?  Or, as the rumours suggest, is someone abusing the system for financial gain?  I really don't know what the answer is but we all need to find out and pretty soon before either pharmacies go bust or the NHS medicines budget increases by more hundreds of millions of pounds that it can't at all afford.

***This message was amended to stop Cumbrian pharmacists of Scottish descent getting angry letters from lawyers***

Ilove Pharmacy, Non Pharmacist Branch Manager

Corruption in the supply chain is the issue. You're talking millions of pounds and likely the people being lobbied to look at the situation are actually in on the scam or paid off

Job of the week

Pharmacist
Bermuda
£100k starting