This annual publication pulls together data from various sources on specific parts of the community pharmacy and appliance contractor contractual frameworks, dispensing and appeals. Data provided in this publication comes from NHS Digital, NHS Prescription Services (a division of NHS Business Services Authority), NHS England and NHS Litigation Authority Family Health Services Appeal Unit. An appendix file of 6 data tables is provided.
It only includes community pharmacy and appliance contractors on the pharmaceutical list in England that were dispensing NHS prescriptions as at 31 March each year. Activity shown is for the whole year and includes activity carried out by community pharmacy contractors and appliance contractors who may not have been on the list as at 31 March due to a merger or closure mid-year.
Under the Medicines Act 1968, a pharmacy can only be registered by a pharmacist sole trader, a limited liability partnership (where all partners are pharmacists) or bodies corporate (where a superintendent pharmacist must be appointed). Bodies corporate include limited liability partnerships under the Companies Act 2006. These are collectively known as pharmacy contractors.
In this publication, community pharmacy contractors who own six or more pharmacies are known as ‘multiple contractors’ (also known as pharmacy chains). Those who own five or less pharmacies are known as ‘independents’.
The data collected and published assists the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) to monitor the community pharmacy market and assess the impact of the current regulatory framework, particularly in relation to patient access and choice to inform and develop policy. In addition, there are a number of professional bodies who use the data to inform negotiation and commissioning of services including the Dispensing Doctors Association, National Pharmacy Association and the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiation Committee (PSNC). The publication is also quoted in various professional journals and in the media.
Users should always use the figures in the latest publication to ensure they are the most up to date figures available.
Data for the devolved administrations is available directly from the relevant administration. Wales data is available from the Welsh Government. Scotland data is available from Information Services Division Scotland. Northern Ireland data is available from the Business Services Organisation.
We welcome any comments and/or suggestions for improvement on the General Pharmaceutical Services publication. Please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org.