NHS data for England in 2018-19 shows there are 1,080 dispensing practices with 9.7 million dispensing patients, a decrease of 16 practices and an increase of 210,000 dispensing patients compared to 2017-18.
A supporting report of NHS investment in GP in the UK also shows that in 2018-19 the total net cost of dispensing was £10,329 million – a rise of 3.125 per cent on 2017-18. Dispensing fees (including for PAs by all GPs and DSQS payments) rose by £15.5m or 8.5 per cent during the year to £197.12m. Reimbursement of drugs, including PA allowance and discounts, rose by £16.6m or 2.8 per cent to £592.9m.
As a whole, dispensing practices account for approximately 15 per cent of all GP practices in England.
Looking at UK investment in GP, excluding reimbursement, GPs received a real terms increase of 1.9 per cent.
England has seen the smallest real terms increase of 1.36 per cent, equating to £10,526 million. The biggest increase in investment was recorded in Wales, which saw a real terms increase of 5.69 per cent or £544m. in Scotland the real terms increase was 4.88 per cent.