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Media And Political Bulletin – 08 October 2018

Media and Political Bulletin

08 October 2018

Media Summary

 DH expands on health secretary’s desire for ‘French model’ of pharmacy

Chemist and Druggist, Isabel Finch, 8 October 2018

Chemist and Druggist reports that the government has expanded on the health secretary’s desire to move to a French model of pharmacies.

Matt Hancock told C+D at the Conservative party conference last week that he wants to “move towards the French model for pharmacies, where they do more”.

Asked to shed more light on Mr Hancock’s comments, the Department of Health and Social Care said that pharmacy services on the continent offer a wider range of services to members of the community.

The DH is keen to see local pharmacies play a stronger role in the community, it said.

PSNC: FMD funding to be discussed in 2019-20 contract negotiations

Chemist and Druggist, Grace Lewis, 8 October 2018

Chemist and Druggist also reports on the fact that the government has agreed to discuss the possibility of remuneration for pharmacies complying with the EU scanning law as part of the sector’s funding for 2019-20, according to the PSNC.

PSNC’s CEO, Simon Dukes stated that ‘[The government] knows we want to talk about it (the FMD). They have asked and I’ve agreed to discuss it in the 2019-20 contract negotiations.’

But, speaking in a separate session on the FMD, Claymore Richardson, senior policy manager for pharmacy at the Department of Health and Social Care, told delegates: ‘There is no big pot of money for implementing FMD.’

The DH has been working with NHS Digital and others on ‘the options for people working in the community,’ Mr Richardson added.

Parliamentary Coverage

House of Commons, Written and Tabled Questions, 8 October 2018

Tom Brake, MP: To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that the next Pharmaceutical Price Regulation Scheme considers combination treatments for cancer to be cost-effective.

Tom Brake, MP: To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, when the heads of agreement for the next Pharmaceutical Price Regulation Scheme will be published.

Tim Farron, MP: To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he has taken to make pharmacies (a) aware and (b) prepared for the implementation of the Falsified Medicines Directive by February 2019.

Tim Farron, MP: To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he has taken to assist independent pharmacies in the purchase of the (a) hardware and (b) software required by the implementation of the Falsified Medicines Directive.

Full Coverage

DH expands on health secretary’s desire for ‘French model’ of pharmacy

Chemist and Druggist, Isabel Finch, 8 October 2018

The government has expanded on the health secretary’s desire to move to a French model for pharmacies.

Matt Hancock exclusively told C+D at the Conservative party conference last week (October 2) that he wants to “move towards the French model for pharmacies, where they do more”.

Asked to shed more light on Mr Hancock’s comments, the Department of Health and Social Care (DH) told C+D that pharmacy services on the continent offer a wider range of services to members of the community.

The DH is keen to see local pharmacies play a stronger role in the community, it said.

Pharmacies are integral to the DH’s plan for a fully integrated health service and are well placed to play an enhanced role in helping people stay well, it added.

Pharmacies “absolutely vital to community health”

At the Conservative party conference, Mr Hancock also told C+D that pharmacies are “absolutely vital to community health”.

“Pharmacy is incredibly important in the whole prevention agenda,” he added.

“I didn’t have enough time on the platform, because if I had one more minute I would have spent one more minute talking about the importance of pharmacies.”

In his speech, Mr Hancock called for “more treatment closer to home” and cemented his plans for “bringing new technology across the health and care system”.

PSNC: FMD funding to be discussed in 2019-20 contract negotiations

Chemist and Druggist, Grace Lewis, 8 October 2018

The government has agreed to discuss the possibility of remuneration for pharmacies complying with the EU scanning law as part of the sector’s funding for 2019-20, PSNC has said.

The Falsified Medicines Directive (FMD) – created to prevent counterfeit medicines from entering the supply chain – will require every pharmacy in the UK to scan barcodes and check tamper-proof devices from February 9, 2019.

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has not published specific calculations of the cost of the legislation to community pharmacies, but its impact assessment estimates that “healthcare institutions” face paying up to £4,000 every five years to buy scanners to comply with the directive.

Reena Barai, a contractor and National Pharmacy Association (NPA) board member, said pharmacy owners continue to be concerned about the associated costs of complying with the FMD.

“Every contractor I have met over the last couple of days has said that is the one thing they want to find out about at the Pharmacy Show,” she said at the conference in Birmingham yesterday (October 7).

“Are we going to be funded for it?” Ms Barai asked Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC) CEO Simon Dukes.

In response, Mr Dukes said: “I don’t know yet, is the answer. I have flagged this significantly with the government.”

“[The government] knows we want to talk about it. They have asked and I’ve agreed to discuss it in the 2019-20 contract negotiations,” he added.

“Those negotiations are yet to start. I am hopeful that they will do so in the next month, and [the FMD] is on the agenda.”

“No pot of money for FMD”

Speaking in a separate session on the FMD, Claymore Richardson, senior policy manager for pharmacy at the Department of Health and Social Care (DH), told delegates: “There is no big pot of money for implementing FMD.”

The DH has been working with NHS Digital and others on “the options for people working in the community”, Mr Richardson added.

In the same session, Raj Patel, chair of the UK FMD working group for community pharmacy, insisted: “There needs to be a pot for FMD.”

Contract negotiations “need to gather pace” if pharmacies are to afford FMD hardware and software installation by the February 2019 deadline, he added.

Leon Finnerty, NHS Digital FMD programme manager, said that rather than see it as a “burden”, pharmacists should consider the positive impact medicines scanning could have on the sector – including greater control over their stock and drug shortages.

“Take the fact that you’ve got [to comply with the] FMD as a given,” he told delegates, before suggesting they ask themselves: “How can I turn this into a benefit for me?”

Media And Political Bulletin – 08 October 2018

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