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Media and Political Bulletin – 16 July 2020

Media and Political Bulletin

16 July 2020

Media Summary

Jo Churchill reassures pharmacies on funding to avoid Covid-enforced closures

Pharmacy Business, Radhakrishna NS, 14 July 2020

Pharmacy Business reports that pharmacy Minister Jo Churchill has reassured MPs that the government would invest in community pharmacies and avoid widespread closures following the Covid-19 pandemic.

During a House of Commons debate on Monday (July 13), the pharmacy minister drew attention to a pledge made earlier to the National Pharmacy Association (NPA)’s virtual conference by the Health Secretary that large-scale closures would “not happen on my watch”.

The minister reminded MPs that the government was currently in negotiations with the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee on pharmacy funding and also emphasised that pharmacies will be key to scaling up the flu vaccination programme this coming autumn and winter.

Parliamentary Coverage

Secretary of State speech to NPA Conference

NPA Conference, Matt Hancock, 13 July 2020

Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Matt Hancock gave a keynote speech at the NPA Conference 2020. Matt talked about the immense health challenges COVID-19 poses and the important work that community pharmacy has done as part of the NHS response. He discussed some of the early learnings from the crisis, the changes in primary care and discuss what the NHS needs from the community pharmacy sector moving forward.

The full speech can be found here.

Full Coverage

Jo Churchill reassures pharmacies on funding to avoid Covid-enforced closures

Pharmacy Business, Radhakrishna NS, 14 July 2020

Pharmacy Minister Jo Churchill has reassured MPs that the government would invest in community pharmacies and avoid widespread closures following the Covid-19 pandemic.

During a House of Commons debate on Monday (July 13), the pharmacy minister drew attention to a pledge made earlier to the National Pharmacy Association (NPA)’s virtual conference by the Health Secretary that large-scale closures would “not happen on my watch”.

Thanking community pharmacy teams for their work during the pandemic, she said, “They’ve stepped up, innovated and shown great resilience.”

The debate was opened by backbench Conservative MP for the Isle of Wight, Bob Seely, who warned that it would be a “national shame” if pharmacies were forced to close having stayed open to serve the public during the Covid-19 crisis.

Funding to cover the additional costs incurred by pharmacies, such as extra staffing, needs to be more than “a sticking plaster”, he said.

Conservative Paul Bristow and Labour’s Holly Walker-Lynch also spoke warmly about the support pharmacies in their constituencies have given from the frontline during the coronavirus pandemic.

NPA chief executive, Mark Lyonette, said: “It’s good that public commitments have been made both to our members and to MPs that pharmacies will be supported to stay open and expand services. We believe that Ministers are sincere in their stated ambition to make pharmacies the first port of call for healthcare, but the sector urgently needs further investment to underpin viability, change and improvement.”

The minister reminded MPs that the government was currently in negotiations with the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee on pharmacy funding and also emphasised that pharmacies will be key to scaling up the flu vaccination programme this coming autumn and winter.

Media and Political Bulletin – 16 July 2020

From Factory to Pharmacy

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