Contractors have until March 31 to claim the payment by accessing the SCR in their pharmacy, after having sent one representative to a free face-to-face SCR event, the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC) announced last week (January 4).
A spokesperson from NHS Digital told C+D two days later that it is “entirely their choice as autonomous organisations” if pharmacies opt out of SCR, and suggested some “may have decided to go live with SCR later than the planned rollout date in their areas”.
Pharmacies can begin using the SCR at any time. However, those who do so after March will not receive £200, NHS Digital stressed.
Using the SCR is worth a further £640 via the government's Quality Payments Scheme, with 10 points in total available, split between the two reviews in April and November.
Nearly two thirds of pharmacies have already begun to use SCR, over double the number accessing the record five months ago, NHS Digital told C+D. “Pharmacies with SCR are already reporting that it is saving staff valuable time by not having to contact the GP practice”, it added.
NHS Digital is working to make sure the “small proportion” of pharmacies who do not have a SCR-trained representative “are aware of those sessions taking place in their areas”, it added.
Further information about registering and training for SCR can be found on the NHS Digital website.