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Dispensing fees down 2.7% from October 1

Surprise change also increases feescale bandings

October 2nd 2015

Tagged: Dispensary guidance news England Wales

By Ailsa Colquhoun

Practices in England and Wales are warned to expect an average 2.7% cut in dispensing fees, following a surprise change in the GMS Statement of Financial Entitlements, with effect from 1 October 2015.

The change also increases the banding thresholds by between 1.2-1.5%.

The new feescale, effective between October 1, 2015-April 1, 2016 is detailed here

Total prescriptions calculated separately for each individual dispensing practitioner, in bandsPrices per prescription in pence+/-p from outgoing feescale  (nearest equivalent banding)
Up to 455211.5-6
456 – 568208.5-5.8
569 – 683205.8-5.7
684 – 796203.2-5.6
797 – 911200.7-5.7
912 – 1023198.6-5.6
1024 – 1422196.5-5.5
1423 – 1990194.7-5.4
1991 – 2275193.0-5.4
2276 – 2844191.5-5.3
2845 – 3412190.1-5.4
3413 – 3981189.0-5.3
3982 – 4548188.0-5.3
4549 and over187.3-5.3

 Effective from April 1, 2016, the following feescale will apply

Total prescriptions calculated separately for each individual dispensing practitioner, in bandsPrices per prescription in pence
Up to 455214.9
456 – 568211.9
569 – 683209.1
684 – 796206.4
797 – 911204.0
912 – 1023201.8
1024 – 1422199.7
1423 – 1990197.8
1991 – 2275196.1
2276 – 2844194.5
2845 – 3412193.2
3413 – 3981192.1
3982 – 4548191.1
4549 and over190.3

The previous dispensing fee scale, effective from April 1, 2015, ranged between 217.5p for up to 449 prescriptions per practitioner to 192.6p per prescription for individual practitioners dispensing over 4,486 prescriptions each. The previous feescale can be found here.

DDA chairman, Dr Richard West said: “This is a deeply disappointing development made even worse by the total lack of communication from either the BMA, or the NHS and contrary to well established practice.

“There is an agreed mechanism to set the feescale which comes from a fixed amount of money. The DDA has yet to see the formal document setting out the calculations, again contrary to custom and practice.

“The fee will rise in April next year, but the overall effect is a cut which comes at an already difficult time for general practice. We will keep our members updated with developments and we apologise on behalf of the BMA and the NHS.”