Lloyds to temporarily cut hours at some Sainsbury's pharmacies
LloydsPharmacy is reportedly telling staff it intends to temporarily reduce opening hours at its Sainsbury's 100-hour sites, citing workforce issues as a contributing factor.
In a “script” seen by Pharmacy Network News yesterday that appears to be intended to be read out to managers, pharmacists and other staff members, the company said that after evaluating “our service provisions and workforce plans” it has taken the decision to limit trading hours at these 100-hour sites to between 9am and 9pm on Monday to Saturday, with Sunday hours unaffected. This will take effect from November 9 until January 29 next year.
The script says the changes are being made under the terms of the Government’s emergency declaration of flexible provision of pharmaceutical services, a pandemic measure that was introduced in April 2020 and is set to expire at the end of January.
“Both the NHS and Sainsbury’s head office have been informed of our intentions and services such as LP.com, google etc will be updated to reflect these hours,” the document explains.
“This will ensure we can reduce the number of part/full closures which have been prevalent of late, [and] secure and deploy adequate workforce to cover the new trading hours.”
The document asks managers and regional managers to advise relevant colleagues that they will be supported “as much as possible through this period of change”.
Managers are then asked to read out one of two statements to colleagues concerning their working patterns and/or contracted hours.
Some staff members will be asked to discuss moving their working pattern “to meet the branch’s temporary trading hours” without any change to the number of contracted hours they work each week.
Others will be asked to discuss reducing their contracted hours “informally” in line with the new trading hours, with salary payments “updated accordingly”.
The script advises managers to reassure affected colleagues that they will be supported and to ask them if they have “any initial thoughts or questions” concerning the changes.
The document explains that these changes are necessary due to factors such as the pandemic, UK-wide workforce issues, pharmacist shortages and “changing behaviours within the locum population”.
“We need to ensure that the current limited workforce is best utilised in the right places to provide the best care for all,” the document says.
The document came to light the day after it was announced that McKesson’s UK operations including LloydsPharmacy and AAH are to be sold to private equity firm Aurelius.