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MP to deliver 'large bag' of funding cut postcards

Tom Brake (centre) visiting his local community pharmacy SG Barai Chemist before the general election in May

South west London MP Tom Brake is working with pharmacists to give the funding cuts campaign momentum

Liberal Democrat MP Tom Brake has pledged to personally deliver postcards from his constituents protesting against pharmacy cuts to ministers at the Department of Health (DH).

The MP told C+D he plans to deliver the "large bag" of protest postcards he has been sent from his constituents to the DH. The National Pharmacy Association, Pharmacy Voice and the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee printed 100,000 postcards as part of their campaign against the government's planned pharmacy cuts

Mr Brake told C+D he is “perplexed” by the government’s proposals to slash pharmacy funding and intends to “continue to campaign on the issue”.

The Conservative government is putting out "a very confused message", the MP for Carshalton and Wallington, in south west London, told C+D.

“For the last 10 years, there have been successive governments who have encouraged members of parliament like me to promote pharmacy as a means of easier access for patients,” Mr Brake said. “We don’t want the pressure shifted into GP surgeries that are struggling or A&E, which is also struggling."

"Vigorous campaign" 

Mr Brake said his local community pharmacy was undertaking a "vigorous campaign" and he had attended a meeting last month with around 30 pharmacists from Sutton and Merton in south London. 

Mr Brake is working with local pharmacies to build up momentum behind the funding cuts campaign, he said. "I've tried to encourage them to get endorsements from patients so there are real life examples of people who have benefited from pharmacy services," he added. 

Have you met with your local MP to discuss the cuts?

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Leon The Apothecary, Student

My local MPs are having real issues even keep surgeries open in my area. I calculated at least 300,000 patients currently displaced by recent closures and another 5 practices due to close come January with no alternative being proposed. It's worrying.

Pharmacy HLP, Manager

It is good to see some pharmacists and their workforce team getting on and trying to make a difference. This is a great step to get MPs doing stuff with us as they know how things work in politics.

More of the same from others please, get the Government to wake up .

Neeraj Salwan, Superintendent Pharmacist

Hope this has some sort of impact. Looking at the general abolition of the country by the Tories things are looking bleak. Jeremy Hunt doesn't have a clear understanding of the frustrations on the ground level and is basically contradicting the strategy previous governments have tried to put in place for Pharmacy to ease the burden on GP surgeries. God knows where this is going, perhaps all the billions hidden away by Mossack Fonseca for fat cat billionaires in tax havens should be brought back to Britain to fund the NHS...

Leon The Apothecary, Student

Jeremy Hunt is certainly making himself super unpopular these days. He really needs to look at curbing his comments which at the best of times seem like they are coming from a layman, someone who's never worked in the sector - bit unfortunate for someone who is the Health Sec.

P M, Community pharmacist

well done - keep up the good work..

Harry Tolly, Pharmacist

I am sure the postcards would have more impact if Boots promised to pay UK Corporation Tax at the same level as a small contractor with one shop. Not too much to ask is it ?

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