Community pharmacy in Wales will be given a £1.4m cash injection in funding for 2018/19, the country’s health minister has announced.
Vaughan Gething told Welsh Assembly members on Monday (1 April) that this additional funding will ‘also secure further changes’ to the 2019/20 contract to ‘improve quality, medicines safety and the availability of new and innovative services from pharmacies and which take pressure off other parts of the NHS’.
‘Contrast’ to English funding
The increase in funding follows ‘representations’ from Community Pharmacy Wales (CPW) about concerns over ‘a range of financial and regulatory pressures which, if not addressed, could slow the rate of transformation’, Mr Gething said.
He added: ‘After careful consideration, I have concluded that the inflationary pressures pharmacies are experiencing are a risk to us realising the potential of community pharmacy to improve health and wellbeing.
'In contrast to the position in England, where pharmacies have been faced with significant cuts to funding, closures and a failure of the Government in England to recognise the sector’s value, in Wales we have maintained our investment in these vital community assets.’
Chair of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) Welsh Pharmacy Board Suzanne Scott-Thomas said the organisation is ‘delighted’ about the investment.
She said: ‘We recognise that radical and sustainable transformation of care can only be achieved through investment in new and innovative services, above and beyond the existing allocation of resources.’