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a pound imageMarch 27 2018

The National Pharmacy Association has asked wholesalers to delay taking payments from pharmacy contractors, to avoid a “cash flow crunch” between March and April.

The NHS final payment for the 2017-18 financial year will not be made to contractors until April 3, after the Easter bank holiday weekend. However, the NPA said it understands that some wholesalers are due to take payment from contractors on March 29.

“Due to the delayed NHS payment date, this will potentially cause issues for NPA members who may struggle to meet this wholesaler payment date,” said NPA Chairman Ian Strachan in a letter to wholesalers. “This situation is exacerbated by the cash flow problems which many NPA members are facing due to the funding cuts imposed by the Government.”

The NPA said it was taking this “unusual step” due to hearing frequent reports from independent pharmacies having to spend more each month to obtain NHS medicines than the NHS payments they receive.

“If the wholesalers do the right thing by their independent customers, it will help pharmacies get over this month’s hurdle. However, the situation is clearly unsustainable if the underfunding persists. The Government needs to take urgent action to avoid pharmacies going out of business,” said the NPA.

Link:
NPA announcement    

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