Record loss of 432 pharmacies over the past year

Pharmacy press

New figures reported by the Company Chemists’ Association (CCA) show that there has been a record net loss of 432 pharmacies in England over the past financial year (2023/24) – an average of more than 8 pharmacies closing each week. Core funding for community pharmacy in England has been cut in real-terms by 30%, having a devastating impact on pharmacy business and reducing pharmacy numbers by 1,180 compared to 2015.

CCA Press release: Record loss of 432 pharmacies over the past year

We have issued the following statement in response.

Our Chief Executive Janet Morrison said:

“We have known for some time that community pharmacies are at the brink of collapse, and the CCA’s analysis confirms that stark reality. Years of financial and operational pressures are continuing to take their toll on the sector as the Government policy to squeeze pharmacies financially is now pushing all community pharmacy businesses to the edge.

We have already seen pharmacies up and down the country being forced to close temporarily, making reductions in opening hours where they can, reviewing their estates, and, if they can, closing branches. The message to Government and the NHS remains clear: if you do not reverse this policy, and fast, the impact on pharmacy businesses will be catastrophic, and vital services to patients will become ever more chaotic, with medicines supply potentially critically at risk.

Whilst we hope the £645m recovery plan funding brings some relief to pharmacy businesses, we have been clear that this is not enough to reverse all of the pressures on pharmacy businesses and that increased and sustained support and investment are also desperately needed. The viability of pharmacy businesses will remain our critical concern in discussions with Government and the NHS.”

Capture healthcare advisory work not being covered by Pharmacy First to inform our negotiations with Government and NHS.

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