Over 1,800 English pharmacies are at risk of closure due to Government cuts to community pharmacy funding, according to a survey by The Pharmacist.
A survey of 156 pharmacy professionals between November and January revealed that 15% feared that their pharmacy could close due to the cuts. Extrapolating this data to the 11,688 community pharmacies in England suggests that 1,812 could be forced to shut their doors.
The Government imposed a funding package worth over £200m in cuts over two years on English community pharmacy at the end of 2016.
The survey also revealed that many pharmacies will be forced to make redundancies due to the cuts. Over half (51%) of respondents expect to make redundancies, with an average of two staff members at risk of losing their jobs. This equates to a potential 12,000 pharmacy jobs at risk across England.
‘I can’t keep going’
Almost nine in 10 (87%) respondents said they were experiencing added stress or anxiety due to the cuts.
One respondent said: ‘I have been physically ill, and my anxiety levels are high, with insomnia. I will feel guilty abandoning the patients and staff I have served for the last 25 years, but I don’t think I can keep going with this amount of pressure.’
Another asked: ‘is it worth carrying on or should I just retire and sell to the large companies?’
For a full analysis of the survey results, see the latest issue of The Pharmacist.