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Anxieties Continue to Grow Over Community Pharmacies

21st November 2022

An emergency review of community pharmacy services has been authorised to specify what can be dependably provided this winter and give the general public and the Health and Social Care system assurance.

Anxieties continue to grow over the growing expenses pharmacies must endure.

Between 2019/20 and 2021/22, a substantial amount of additional funding was committed to industry to make sure community pharmacies could deliver crucial frontline aid throughout the pandemic period.

There was also an agreement made regarding a commissioning plan for 2022 to 2025, outlining how community pharmacies can be given the opportunity to provide offerings worth £7 million, for example a “Pharmacy First” package for frequently experienced conditions. They will be given a further £3.5 million to deliver vaccines and the ability to apply for additional finance for promoting medication adherence.

In 2022, the Department created an additional funding envelope with a value of more than £5.3 million, which is presently being put into practise. Although industry insiders claim this won’t scratch the surface of what is needed.

The burden is being felt by every component of the Health and Social Care system. So far there has been no confirmed budget for 2022–2023 and overspending has been heavily anticipated. In the upcoming years, it is predicted that financial limitations will persist and perhaps even get worse.

In light of difficulties over the pandemic period, an emergency evaluation of all community pharmacy services was implemented.

Peter May, secretary of the Department of Health, has volunteered to get together with Community Pharmacy NI soon to go over the challenges the industry is experiencing.

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