Community pharmacy

Single activity fee to rise by four pence

The Department of Health (DH) has confirmed that it will put up the single activity fee (SAF) to £1.29 from November 2017.

The increase follows an investigation by the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC) which found that there was an an under-delivery of fees under the Community Pharmacy Contractual Framework (CPCF) for 2017–2018.

The DH has said that the 4p increase, which will be reflected in November’s drug tariff, will be kept under review.

The PSNC has confirmed that community pharmacy contractors will receive the first increased SAF on the FP34 Schedule of Payments at the beginning of February 2018.

This is because the advance for November prescriptions will be based on October’s average item value (AIV), which is calculated using that month’s fees.

The PSNC funding team is updating its and cashflow calculator to reflect the changes.

The SAF was introduced at the end of 2016 as part of a controversial government overhaul, which saw the abolition of establishment payments. The fee was intended to encompass the professional fee (dispensing fee), practice payment, repeat dispensing payment, and the monthly electronic prescription service (EPS) payment.

Under the scheme, pharmacy contractors are paid a SAF for each item they dispense whether it is a medicine or an appliance.

Citation: The Salvadore DOI: 10.1211/PJ.2017.20203784

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