The key changes include:
- an increase in practice payments of 8p per item;
- revised methadone fee arrangements;
- the introduction of 100% advance payments for contractors;
- the introduction of the Government’s supply chain finance scheme;
- a new requirement to ensure prescriptions have a prescriber code.
Negotiations on the Cost of Service Inquiry continue, and PSNC aims to reach a settlement of funding in the near future
Further information on all of these changes is available in a guidance document which is can be downloaded here.
PSNC Chief Executive Sue Sharpe said:
“Although there will be no ‘big bang’ on April 1st when the organisations of the reformed NHS take over from the existing bodies, for community pharmacies there are going to be a number of important changes.
Contractors will perhaps be most interested in the immediate changes to funding, and of course the increase in practice payments will be welcome for businesses. Practice payments were reduced in October last year, and this payment level reflects the amount needed to deliver the current level of agreed funding whilst negotiations continue. The move to 100% advance payments will provide a boost to payments due at the beginning of June, and the introduction of the Government’s supply chain finance scheme will also be helpful for many contractors.
Community pharmacies will also want to be aware of some new requirements in the reformed NHS, for example the need to check that prescriptions have a cost centre code on them, and they will need to understand the new endorsing arrangements for methadone prescriptions.
None of these changes reflect any decisions on COSI-based funding, but contractors can be assured that PSNC’s negotiating team continues to work very hard to secure the best outcome on that for all contractors.”