Reminder: Accessing earlier advance payments following changes to submission requirements

Many changes were implemented to the Drug Tariff from October 2021. Pharmacy contractors and their teams should familiarise themselves with the below and adjust their processes where required.

Earlier advance payments for all contractors

From November 2021, all contractors can access advance payments around 20 days earlier by submitting your FP34Cs using the Manage Your Service (MYS) portal no later than 5th of the month following that in which supply was made.

  • The earlier advance payment will be made for pharmacy contractors who have submitted their bundle using MYS by the 5th of the month i.e. October prescription bundle submitted using MYS by 5th November 2021, will receive an earlier advance payment on 11th November 2021.
  • Pharmacy contractors who continue to submit using the paper FP34C, will NOT receive any earlier advance payments but instead will receive advance payments in accordance with the current payment timetable i.e. on or around the 1st of the month following submission.
  • The timing of the final reconciliation payment date remains unchanged i.e. this will continue to be paid on the 1st working day of the month i.e. around two months after contractors have submitted the appropriate FP34C form and prescriptions for pricing.
  • Extended deadline for submission of FP34C and dispatch of prescription bundle in months where a bank holiday occurs during the first five days of the month (see ‘Extended submission deadlines for bank holidays’ below).
  • Paper FP34C submission document will only be available until March 2022 (for February 2022 prescriptions) after which MYS will be the only route for all monthly submissions.

Read more: News article dated 26th August 2021.

End to the Pharmacy Earlier Payment Scheme (PEPS)

  • PEPS pharmacy contractors should note that the final PEPS payments was paid on 1st October 2021.
  • Contractors still signed up to the PEPS scheme will receive a one-off payment on 1st November 2021 which set at 92% of the PEPS pharmacy contractor’s payment received on 1st October 2021.
  • The one-off payment will be recovered in equal parts over 11 months – last recovery payment on 30th September 2022.
  • From 1st November, a 12-month transition arrangement has been agreed for existing PEPS pharmacy contractors to transfer over to the new earlier advance payment timetable available to ALL contractors from November 2021.

Read more in our our news article dated 6th September 2021. This explains transition arrangements for PEPS contractors and includes a link to our cashflow model.

Extended submission deadlines for bank holidays

  • In months where a bank holiday occurs during the first five days of the month, contractors will be given an extra day to submit their FP34C and dispatch their prescription bundle.
  • Advance payment date will remain as four working days after the extended submission deadline of the 6th.
  • The requirement to submit electronic Claim Notification (CN) messages or Electronic Reimbursement Endorsement Messages (EREMs) within the first 5 days remains unchanged.

Changes to end-of-month paper FP10 prescription sorting requirements 

The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) has agreed to relax certain end of month prescription sorting requirements.

  • From October 2021, contractors will no longer be required to sort paper FP10 prescriptions by:
    • prescriber surname
    • form type (FP10SS PN/SP/HP and FP10D)
  • Forms must continue to be sorted into their relevant patient charge/exempt groups.
  • FP10MDA instalment dispensing forms must continue to be sorted separately.

Read more: Prescription Submission Factsheet.

Changes to the inclusion criteria for red separators

  • From October 2021, Bulk prescriptions and HM Prison (HMP) Service-issued paper prescriptions to be placed into red-separators.
  • Bulk and HMP forms are exempt from prescription charges and should be included in the red separator for exempt prescriptions for end of month submission.

Note: there is no specific exemption category to mark on the reverse of paper prescriptions for Bulk and HMP forms. Placing Bulk and HMP Service-issued prescriptions in the exempt red separator will ensure that these forms are subjected to additional checks by operators at the NHS Business Services Authority (NHSBSA).

Read more: Red-Separator Factsheet.

Updated paper FP34C

  • From October 2021, the NHSBSA will be posting out a new version of the paper FP34C form.
  • The updated paper FP34C will have the following new fields to bring it in line with MYS:
    • addition of No. of supplies made in accordance with Serious Shortage Protocols (SSP) declaration (this will also appear on the MYS submission portal)
    • removal of ETP Token for non-payment, Repeat Authorising forms and EPS release 2 Claim messages tick boxes.
    • removal of MUR and staff hour declaration
  • The form will also separate EPS and paper prescription figures to assist contractors with totals reconciliations and checking EPS totals are as expected.
  • Wording in the ‘sorting and submissions of forms’ section updated to include information on the ETP token submission requirements. Each month, contractors must submit tokens for non-payment excluding those for age exempt patients, prescriptions where only free-of-charge (FOC) items are prescribed and where Real Time Exemption Checking (RTEC) confirms an exemption.

Note: Pharmacy contractors who continue to use the paper FP34C submission route will not be eligible for the early advance payment.

Please see PSNC’s updated Changes to the paper FP34C submission document (from October 2021) factsheet for more information.

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