“Don’t assume you are safe just because there are less than 2,750 residents in a village, Charlotte Goodson, adviser to Primary Care Commissioning warned delegates in her presentation entitled: Mergers, dispensing and appeal decisions – things to be aware of.
Speaking to the DDA annual conference yesterday, she said that in November 2016 NHS Resolution changed its approach to considering reserved locations: it took account of the total number of patients using the GP dispensary in the village – which was higher that the threshold figure of 2,750 for granting a reserved location.
Previously, the consideration was the number of people living within 1.6km of the proposed pharmacy who are registered with a GP.
In addition, NHS Resolution has demonstrated that it will take into account a practice’s level of prescribing and dispensing and facilities which may draw other people in, for example, schools and shops when decided a reserved location.
Turning to mergers, she advised dispensing practices to talk early on to NHS England and your CCG about dispensing. Practices will need to know:
- Which premises you plan to dispense from and whether you have premises approval for them
- Which area or areas you can dispense to from those premises
- Whether you have a historic right or outline consent to dispense to that area or those areas.
Her presentation also looked at applications to open a community pharmacy on the grounds of unforeseen benefits. An ‘unforeseen benefits’ application offers something that was not identified in the relevant pharmaceutical needs assessment
Giving a locality “reasonable choice” with regard to obtaining pharmaceutical services in the area of the health and wellbeing board is the most common reason why an ‘unforeseen benefits’ application will be granted. However, others include:
- People sharing a protected characteristic and their access to pharmaceutical services which meet their specific needs which are difficult for them to access
- Innovative approaches to the delivery of pharmaceutical services.
View the full presentation.