The Pharmacy Imposition – Overview

Where are the cuts being applied?
Four fees are being consolidated into one. The professional fee, practice payment, repeat dispensing payment and monthly EPS payment are being replaced with a single activity fee (SAF). The SAF was initially set at £1.13 per item for December 2016 to March 2017, and has now risen to a level of £1.25 per item.

Additionally, the Establishment payment is being phased out, starting with a 20 per cent cut from 1 December 2016 (based on 2015/16 levels) and a further 20 per cent cut from 1 April 2017. It is expected that the payment will cease completely by 2019/20.

How will this affect your income?

An average pharmacy dispensing 3,150 or more items per month will see their establishment payment cut by £419 per month in December 2016, and by a further £418 in April 2017.

PSNC has published indicative income tables to help contractors estimate the amount of income they may receive for Essential Services following the implementation of the cuts.

  • For example, a pharmacy dispensing 8,000 items per month might receive around £1.82 per item dispensed in November 2016, but only £1.44 in December 2016, rising slightly to £1.49 in April 2017
  • Once an estimated average buying profit is factored in, the pharmacy might receive £19,673 in November 2016 for providing Essential Services, but only £16,594 per month from December 2016, rising to £18,025 per month from April 2017
  • The exact amount received will depend on a number of factors, including the mix of products dispensed, the buying profit obtained, and whether there are further Category M reductions


The NPA will continue to update these resources over the coming weeks and months.