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Treasury refuses to budge on pharmacy funding, PSNC reveals

Simon Dukes: We need to hold the DH and NHSE&I to account for their funding decisions
Simon Dukes: We need to hold the DH and NHSE&I to account for their funding decisions

HM Treasury is refusing to budge on its original funding offer for the sector, claimed a PSNC update on its ongoing negotiations with the government.

The Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC) rejected the Department of Health and Social Care (DH) and HM Treasury’s original funding proposal last summer for being “too limited”.

Despite submitting additional data showing the “extensive costs” that contractors have incurred as a result of the pandemic in the autumn, DH officials have indicated that the Treasury “has not moved from its original position”, PSNC said in an update on funding negotiations today (February 9).

PSNC chief executive Simon Dukes said the negotiator is “pushing” for contractors' costs to be “fully covered” by the government.

“The role that pharmacies have played, and continue to play, through the COVID-19 pandemic has been faultless: you have been absolutely critical both to patients and to keeping primary care services going. You have been the buffer for the NHS. You have absorbed the costs of doing that in good faith, and despite the exhaustion of your teams, you are also now pushing hard to be recognised as a key provider of COVID-19 vaccinations,” he stressed.

“There is nothing more you could do.”

PSNC is still waiting for a response to its bid to waive the £370 million in advance funding made available to pharmacy contractors in England, as well an uplift in funding for the five-year pharmacy contract, the negotiator said.

Officials “failing to protect pharmacy”

Mr Dukes said the negotiator is “deeply frustrated” at the Treasury’s reluctance to budge on its “insufficient” funding offer and believes that its “position is not in line with ministers’ promises”, he said.

“We also believe that [the DH] and NHS England and NHS Improvement (NHSE&I) are failing in their duty to protect the sector financially,” he added and urged the sector to “publicly hold [the government] and NHSE&I to account for their funding decisions and the impact that those can have on patients”.

He also called for cross-sector support to “make even more noise to showcase the value of what pharmacies do”.

“PSNC spent time action-planning at its meeting last week and we believe, regrettably, that alongside our ongoing private discussions with [the] government and officials, community pharmacy will increasingly need to go public with its concerns,” Mr Dukes concluded.

C+D has approached the DH and HM Treasury for comment.

6 Comments
Question: 
What do you make of the PSNC funding update?

Meera Sharma, Pharmacy owner/ Proprietor

Has C&D become the PR agency for Simon Dukes?? Nearly I in 2 articles here are about him complaining and trying to brainwash us that he is fighting our corner. There are so many organisations wanting to be funded by the treasury and with Mr Dukes as our negotiator I am afraid we are not going to get anywhere. No plan no goal no understanding of this sector - just a talker. We need change! Now campaign for that C&D. 

 

 

 

DavidJ J, Pharmacy owner/ Proprietor

They are a joke. 

Uma Patel, Community pharmacist

Surprise surprise. What’s new?  DoH passing the buck to HMT whilst the Chancellor said ‘whatever it takes’. The DoH is spending billions

Axed Locum, Locum pharmacist

Simon Dukes

“The role that pharmacies have played, and continue to play, through the COVID-19 pandemic has been faultless: you have been absolutely critical both to patients and to keeping primary care services going.

DOH:

Yes... but the locums rolled up their sleeves for a princely sum of £19.00 p.h. with skeleton staffing.

Why do you need more, in addition to one off sums of £750.00 per day for Easter Holidays and May Bank Holidays??

Simon Dukes:

I have to show the contractors that i am fighting their cause. I.E.So the contractors can pay themsleves and the shareholders a handsome dividend.....

Farhat Ahmed, Locum pharmacist

That would be because the treasury are too consumed in making sure that their mates are getting paid extortionate fees for getting in PPE.

M. Rx(n), Student

Alternatively, the DoH could choose to just eliminate the middleman and directly subsume Pharmacy services under local NHS services -- doing away with third-party vested interests.

In such a case where would the current AND PREVIOUS profits go? Therein lies the PSNC's and contractors' "plight". Hence, is the current scheme sustainable? I think not.

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