Negotiations to reform the price concessions system have begun, the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC) has confirmed.

Mike Dent, director of pharmacy funding at PSNC, said that initial conversations are already taking place between the PSNC and the Department of Health and Social Care to discuss reforms to the price concessions system, which the PSNC says is currently not working for contractors.

In August, the PSNC warned that community pharmacy was subsidising the NHS medical bill, after a record number of price concessions were requested, 39 of which were imposed by the DHSC at prices which failed to ‘match the purchase prices reported by contractors and the evidence of market prices’, according to the negotiator.

Earlier this week, PSNC chief executive Janet Morrison said that the situation was ‘not acceptable’ and called for an overhaul of the price concessions system.

On a recent webinar, the PSNC acknowledged ‘the growing number of medicine pricing and supply issues that are taking up a significant amount of pharmacy teams' time that could be better used elsewhere’ and raised questions about how the Department of Health calculated its imposed prices.

In the Community Pharmacy Contractual Framework for 22/23 and 23/24, published yesterday, the Department of Health committed to reviewing the price concessions system ‘as a matter of priority’. Mr Dent confirmed today that those initial conversations had already begun.