Economic analysis of community pharmacy

Pharmacy Press

Earlier this year, NHS England said it started had searching for an independent supplier to conduct a comprehensive economic analysis of pharmacy owners’ current financial situation. This review was agreed as part of the Community Pharmacy Contractual Framework (CPCF) arrangements for 2022/23 and 2023/24 and we believe it this will help us to press Government and the NHS to follow good practice in economic regulation and to make more evidence-based funding decisions.

 We were asked for an update on the economic review.

Our Chief Executive Janet Morrison said:

“The economic analysis being commissioned by NHS England must give a fair and accurate picture of the extremely challenging economic position that all pharmacies find themselves in: this is essential to underpin any future negotiations and to inform future policy. The work will require significant input of sensitive commercial data from community pharmacy so it’s very important to establish the methodology for how that is used and interpreted. We have been inputting into NHS England’s tender process to try to ensure that all of this happens and these have been challenging discussions – we want NHS England to conclude this work quickly, but it is critical given the potentially far-reaching consequences of this work that the process is also done properly.

Formal negotiations on the CPCF arrangements for 2024/25 have not yet begun and we expect them to start sometime in the autumn. We expect this to be a single-year negotiation as all Government funding commitments need to align with the Cross-Government Spending Review period – which has one more year to run. Any future multi-year deals would come with pros and cons which the pharmacy owners on Community Pharmacy England would weigh up very carefully. It has always been the case that general elections and possible changes in Government bring with them uncertainty: politics always has been and always will be a part of the equation, and this is why we have been significantly increasing our political influencing work in the past year and are talking to all three of the main political parties about the future for community pharmacy.”