Pharmacy: Finance

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 10th January 2019.

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Photo of Jenny Chapman Jenny Chapman Shadow Minister (Exiting the European Union)

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 29 October 2018 to Question 181567, what the average fee per prescription item is including the retained medicine margin for (a) a pharmacy which dispensed an average mean number of prescription items in 2017-18, (b) a pharmacy which dispensed the highest number of prescription items in 2017-18, (c) a pharmacy which dispensed the lowest number of prescription items in 2017-18 and (d) a pharmacy which is in the bottom quartile of all pharmacies for the number of prescription items it dispensed in 2017-18.

Photo of Steve Brine Steve Brine The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care

The following table shows the average fee relating to essential services per prescription item for pharmacies with different levels of dispensing activity for the period 2017/18 and also includes medicine margin.

Average fee per prescription item including margin

Pharmacy with mean number of prescription items

£2.37

Pharmacy with highest number of prescription items

£2.10

Pharmacy with lowest number of prescription items

£2.07

Pharmacy with lowest quartile number of prescription items

£2.57

We have calculated total fees as the sum of all essential service fees, including establishment payments and quality payments. It excludes any advanced service fees as these are payments for activity not related to dispensing. Any funding received via retained medicine margin, and any payments relating to the Pharmacy Access Scheme have similarly been excluded from this analysis and so would need to be separately considered.

The medicine margin retained by individual pharmacy contractors is not known, therefore it can only be calculated by using the number of pharmacy contractors and the total medicine margin as per the Community Pharmacy Contractual Framework (which in 2017/18 was £800 million).

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