UK drugs groups seek court block on NHS price limits
Financial Times, Sarah Neville, 11 July 2017

The UK drug industry has entered legal proceedings in an attempt to stop the NHS from imposing new price limits. This was prompted by a recent crackdown in April that means medicines will no longer automatically be funded if they are set to cost more than £20 million a year. This means that manufacturers will have to cut separate deals for each approval of a drug over the £20 million limit. Manufacturers claim that this will deprive patients of cutting edge pharmaceuticals, and that they have thus ‘reluctantly’ applied for a judicial review. However, legal action has divided the industry, with GSK stating that it was “not supportive of this action”. AstraZeneca also made it clear it head reservations, although it did not publically oppose the application. The NHS only devotes 10 percent of its funding to medicines, but many observers claim the NHS is in the middle of a funding crisis.

Westminster Health Forum Keynote Seminar; Next steps for delivering the new models of care and vanguard sites
Westminster Forums, 11 July, 2017

The Westminster Forum Project is excited to invite guests to its conference on delivering new models of care, October 25, 2017. Following on from a very successful conference in 2016, delegates will be able to further assess the NHS New Model of Care targets for 2020. Chaired by the Lord Warner, former Minister of State for Health, issues relating to service delivery, integration and redesign will be at the heart of this forum, and will involve stakeholders from across the health sector. The agenda can be found here.

2017 International Pharmaceutical Distribution Conference
HDA, 11 July 2017

For the fourth year in a row, healthcare distribution associations from around the world will gather in Geneva, Switzerland for the annual Pharmaceutical Distribution Conference. The conference will feature expert-led sessions on the political and policy landscape, product traceability, value-based outcomes and the global financial outlook. To register, go to the HDA website. For inquiries, call the HDA Conference Department at (703) 885-0278 or for information regarding the conference programming, contact Anne Nevel, Senior Director, Industry Education, at (703) 885-0283.

Pharmacies have been marginalised by Sustainability and Transformation Plans claim pharmacy bodies
Pharmacy Business, Neil Trainis, 11 July 2017

Despite the fact that Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs) were designed to “fuse health and social care in local areas by getting healthcare providers including pharmacists working together effectively”, a survey has shown that community pharmacies feel marginalized and have struggled to engage with those leading STPs. 50% of local pharmacies said they had no input into their local STPs. The NHS Confederation Chief has also called the STPs “extremely challenging”. They have been accused of focusing too much on organizational changes, and not enough on improving system performance.


There is no parliamentary coverage.


Pharmacies have been marginalised by Sustainability and Transformation Plans claim pharmacy bodies
Pharmacy Business, Neil Trainis, 11 July 2017

A survey carried out by leading pharmacy organisations has found that community pharmacies across England have been marginalised as they try to involve themselves in Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs).

The government’s attempt to alleviate pressure on hospitals and A&E by moving care into the community, thus closing the £22 billion NHS funding gap, culminated in STPs which were supposed to fuse health and social care in local areas by getting healthcare providers including pharmacists working together effectively.

Investigations launched last December however into the extent to which community pharmacies are part of STPs by the PSNC, Royal Pharmaceutical Society and Pharmacy Voice, which has since folded, revealed pharmacists and their teams have struggled to engage with those leading STPs and new care models.

Just 10% of Local Pharmaceutical Committees (LPCs) rated community pharmacy involvement in STPs as four or five out of five and 50% of LPCs claimed community pharmacy has no involvement in plans for health and social care devolution.

“Looking across the 44 evolving Sustainability and Transformation Partnerships (STPs) it is clear that in many areas the potential contribution of the community pharmacy sector has not been considered or explored in detail, or fully understood,” a report based on the survey said.

“This reflects anecdotal feedback received by the pharmacy organisations during 2016 which suggested that fruitful relationships between community pharmacy representatives and those leading STPs and New Care Models were far from widespread, with significant differences in levels of engagement by region.”

Only 6% of LPCs rated involvement in vanguards, 50 of which were selected to lead on the development of new care models between January and September 2015, as a four or five out of five and 55% said they had no involvement in the £50 million GP Access Fund.

Concerns raised by the survey coincided with an assertion by NHS Confederation chief executive Niall Dickson that STPs “have proved extremely challenging.”

“In part, this is because they require leaders to set aside organisational interests in favour of the system as a whole,” he told Confed17.

“That is much easier to promise than to deliver. And it is made more difficult because the regulatory and accountability mechanisms that govern providers and commissioners are not always aligned. They continue in law, and too often in practice, to be focused on organisational rather than system performance.”


From Factory to Pharmacy

As part of our mission to build awareness, understanding and appreciation of the vital importance of the healthcare distribution sector, we developed an infographic explaining the availability of medicines. It identifies the factors that can impact drug supply, as well as the measures that HDA members undertake day in, day out to help mitigate the risks of patients not receiving their medicines.

See the Infographic

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