This site is intended for Healthcare Professionals only

CPE hits back over AIMp criticism

Pharmacy News

CPE hits back over AIMp criticism

Community Pharmacy England has strongly refuted criticism from AIMp chief executive Leyla Hannbeck, who questioned in an interview published on the Chemist & Druggist website whether the negotiating body had the “right skills” to secure a deal that would resolve the sector’s funding crisis.

Ms Hannbeck was quoted in the article calling for “fundamental change” at CPE, adding that while it was “fine to change your name” and set up reviews by consultancy firms, “you’ve got to have the right people to manage, implement, think, drive [and] lead”.

She also expressed doubt over whether the next community pharmacy contractual framework would be “negotiated properly”, and accused CPE and the other pharmacy bodies of adopting a “doormat approach” to Government and NHS England policy announcements.


Community Pharmacy England responded by saying its chair would be writing to AIMp’s chair to seek a meeting about collaborative working.

Chief executive Janet Morrison (pictured) said: “We are disappointed that AIM continues to pursue division over sector unity. Dividing the sector is not an effective influencing strategy and it does a disservice to all pharmacy owners. To be a constant critic is easy – to create and promote solutions, build persuasive relationships and find a way forwards is considerably more challenging.”

Ms Morrison pointed out that CPE has consistently represented the sector’s views to Government and the NHS about its “devastating funding crisis” and had secured an extra £745m [£645m via the Recovery Plan and a £100m excess margin write-off last autumn] for community pharmacies. “This is the largest investment in many years and… the biggest investment in any primary care sector under the Government’s Recovery Plan,” she said.

“The three AIM contractors on our committee spent two days earlier this month, alongside all our committee members, considering the urgent issues that we need progress on including the critical ongoing negotiations on the £645m Access Fund and the current pressures as reported once again to us by the 800+ people who took part in our pre-committee polling,” Ms Morrison added.

“We are making the point that the sector needs additional core funding on a near daily basis to officials and Parliamentarians [but] alongside that it would be indefensible to throw away the £645m that ministers have offered the sector and which businesses so desperately need.”

Ms Hannbeck has previously called for an immediate £1.1bn cash injection for community pharmacy, saying there was “not enough noise coming from CPE” about the sector’s funding shortfall.

Ms Morrison said CPE would continue to work with all pharmacy organisations to influence Government and the NHS for the benefit of all community pharmacy owners.

Contractor reaction

Some contractors expressed support on Twitter for Ms Hannbeck’s stance. Pharmacist Waqas Ahmad posted: “The problem is this has gone on for so long with no real improvement in any areas that people are going to speak out and [be] critical.”

Other comments included “[CPE] hasn’t negotiated robustly once in my 30+ [year] career. It’s accepted the scraps left on the table… now a lot of pharmacies are not viable businesses.”

Also: “It’s easy to be a critic because there’s so many bad decisions to choose from. Until we grow a backbone as a profession… it will continue to slowly die.”


Copy Link copy link button

Pharmacy News

Stay up to date with all the news, learning and insight in the world of pharmacy.