A study carried out by PricewaterhouseCoopers, commissioned by PSNC, has shown that community pharmacy contributed £3 billion in net value to the NHS, public sector, patients and wider society in England in 2015 through just 12 services.
This means that community pharmacies deliver substantially more in benefits than they receive in funding for providing these services. This clearly demonstrates the “excellent value” that the sector provides for the Department of Health, says PSNC.
The services analysed included supervised consumption, emergency hormonal contraception provision, minor ailments, delivering prescriptions and managing drug shortages. Pharmacies made more than 150 million interventions through these services in 2015 and there was a benefit of more than £250,000 per pharmacy or £54.61 for every resident in England.
The NHS received a net value of £1.35 billion arising from these interventions, including cash savings as a result of cost efficiencies and avoided NHS treatment costs. Other public sector bodies (e.g. local authorities) and wider society together received over £1 billion through increased output, avoided deaths and reduced pressure on other services such as social care and justice.
Patients received around £600 million in net value, mainly in the form of reduced travel time to alternative NHS settings.
The report concludes that from these services alone, community pharmacy contributed a benefit of around £3 billion in 2015, with a further £1.9 billion expected to accrue over the next 20 years.
Sue Sharpe, chief executive of PSNC, said: “PwC’s research shows that community pharmacies punch above their weight in terms of economic value. This is the evidence ministers need to make the case for continued investment in community pharmacies, developing these services even further to bring additional benefits to the NHS and wider society.”
The summary report can be downloaded here.
The full report can be downloaded here.