London mayor Boris Johnson has criticised the government's pharmacy funding cuts as not "thought through", according to London pharmacists who met him last week.
Mr Johnson met Ruislip Manor Pharmacy owner Sanjay Doegar and two other pharmacists last Friday (January 29). Discussing the 6% cut to the global sum in England, Mr Doegar reported that the mayor said: “Someone hasn’t thought this through, let me speak to [health secretary] Jeremy Hunt.”
The mayor agreed to meet with the west London pharmacists in his constituency office after receiving a "post-bag of letters” about the funding cuts, Mr Doegar said. But Mr Johnson was still unaware of the detail of the government's plans at the start of the meeting, Mr Doegar said.
The pharmacists focused on the "headline" points of the cuts in a half-hour discussion with the mayor, who appeared "quite savvy", Mr Doegar said.
“We [told him there is a] contradiction – GPs are overwhelmed and A&Es are bursting, and all our patients are being told to go to [their] local pharmacy,” Mr Doegar told C+D.
A visit from Channel 5 News
Channel 5 visited Mr Doegar's pharmacy on the same day as the mayor to discuss the government's proposals, Mr Doegar said. The pharmacy also featured in the Daily Mail’s report on pharmacy closures, which referenced C+D's coverage of the cuts.
You can download C+D’s template letter on the funding cuts to send to your local MP here.