Medicines shortages are putting 'enormous and unreasonable pressure' on contractors, the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC) has said.

PSNC director of pharmacy funding Mike Dent said that the negotiator is 'disappointed that the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) has 'once again imposed prices on a number of lines at lower levels' than it had sought following the announcement of a long list of April concessionary prices.

He continued: 'Medicines supply and pricing issues continue to put enormous and unreasonable pressure on community pharmacy contractors.

'While the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) trials the use of manufacturer prices rather than wholesaler prices to inform its decision making, PSNC continues to press the need for a fair system to be implemented, the principles of which were agreed by the committee and put to DHSC earlier this year.

A DHSC spokesperson told The Pharmacist: 'The Department has been working with PSNC and the British Generic Manufacturers Association (BGMA) to ensure reimbursement prices, including concessionary prices, reflect the market as closely as possible.'

The Pharmacist is currently waging a #WarOnShortages, campaigning for more governmental transparency around stock shortages, their effects and their causes.

To tell us how shortages are affecting your business, take our short survey here for your chance to win a £50 John Lewis voucher.

April concessionary prices

The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) announced yesterday (3 May) its final drug price concessions for April.

The new additions are as below:

Drug  Pack Size Price concession
Buprenorphine 2mg sublingual tablets 7 £1.35
Buprenorphine 8mg sublingual tablets 7 £2.39
Doxazosin 1mg tablets 28 £0.94
Glimepiride 2mg tablets 30 £2.68
Glimepiride 4mg tablets 30 £5.73
Pioglitazone 15mg tablets 28 £8.82
Pioglitazone 45mg tablets 28 £14.15
Tadalafil 5mg tablets 28 £14.00
Tolterodine 1mg tablets 56 £3.50
Tolterodine 2mg tablets 56 £3.47
Topiramate 25mg tablets 60 £7.41

The DHSC previously granted the following price concessions on 27 April :

Drug Pack size Price concession
Digoxin 125microgram tablets 28 £1.50
Digoxin 250microgram tablets 28 £1.55
Digoxin 62.5microgram tablets 28 £1.55
Glimepiride 3mg tablets 30 £5.10
Irbesartan 300mg tablets 28 £6.97
Mirtazapine 30mg orodispersible tablets 30 £1.35
Topiramate 100mg tablets 60 £17.00
Venlafaxine 37.5mg tablets 56 £3.20

The DHSC previously granted the following price concessions on 24 April:

Drug Pack size Price Concession
Aripiprazole 10mg tablets 28 £3.05
Bicalutamide 150mg tablets 28 £16.94
Co-codamol 30mg/500mg capsules 100 £4.50
Glimepiride 1mg tablets 30 £2.22
Irbesartan 150mg tablets 28 £5.12
Irbesartan 75mg tablets 28 £2.40
Mirtazapine 15mg orodispersible tablets 30 £1.50
Mirtazapine 45mg orodispersible tablets 30 £2.00
Oxybutynin 5mg tablets 56 £1.87
Perindopril erbumine 2mg tablets 30 £4.13
Perindopril erbumine 4mg tablets 30 £3.30
Perindopril erbumine 8mg tablets 30 £5.85
Pioglitazone 30mg tablets 28 £14.85
Topiramate 50mg tablets 60 £9.50
Venlafaxine 75mg tablets 56 £5.68

The DHSC previously granted the following price concessions on 19 April:

Drug Pack size Price Concession
Amitriptyline 50mg tablets 28 £2.88
Aripiprazole 5mg tablets 28 £2.85
Aripiprazole 15mg tablets 28 £3.22
Bicalutamide 50mg tablets 28 £17.24
Chlorpromazine 50mg tablets 28 £32.47
Lacidipine 2mg tablets 28 £2.95
Lansoprazole 15mg orodispersible tablets 28 £2.98
Oxybutynin 2.5mg tablets 56 £1.11
Phenoxymethylpenicillin 125mg/5ml oral solution 100ml £5.96
Phenoxymethylpenicillin 250mg/5ml oral solution 100ml £7.43
Ramipril 2.5mg tablets 28 £1.04
Trimethoprim 200mg tablets 6 £0.40
Trimethoprim 50mg/5ml oral suspension sugar free 100ml £3.75


To find out more about stock shortages, come to our free sister event Pharmacy Forward on Sunday 10 June at the Birmingham Conference and Events Centre. Go to to register.