The ‘worrying’ 6% cut to community pharmacy funding is being motivated by the Treasury rather than being about better planning for the sector, Sir Kevin Barron, the chair of the All Party Pharmacy Group, has warned.
Speaking at a parliamentary reception on 3 February 2016 to mark the evolution of the British Association of Pharmaceutical Wholesalers (BAPW) to the Healthcare Distribution Association UK, Barron said that the entire cross party group had been “shocked” by the letter in December 2015 announcing the cut.
“We met the minister about the proposals and we will be taking further evidence on the implications to all of the pharmacy sector in terms of this change in the funding of pharmacy that is going to take place later this year. It is potentially very worrying,” he said.
What was particularly concerning was that it was being done at the “motivation of the Treasury” rather than through better planning of the pharmacy sector. “When you have something like the Treasury driving this, the issue of planning must be seriously questioned,” he said.
“If we are going to plan services for the 21st century fit for the needs of patients now and taking into account how old this generation is going to be and everything else, we need it to be more than taking a 6% cut out mid-year.”