Quantity

Quantity

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Split Pack Dispensing
Special Containers
Special Container Database

In the majority of scenarios, a pharmacy contractor will be paid for dispensing the exact quantity prescribed. Payment will be pro rata based on pack sizes recognised by the Pricing Authority.

Click on a heading below to reveal more information.

Quantity reimbursement table

Classification of product

How it will be reimbursed

How to endorse quantity dispensed

Related webpage

Medicinal products listed in Part VIIIA (except special containers and items requiring reconstitution) If the quantity of a prescribed item is equal to or a multiple of a listed Drug Tariff pack size, reimbursement will be based on that pack size.Otherwise the pack size will be assessed in the following order using:(i)     the next largest pack size to the quantity prescribed OR(ii)    the largest pack size available.Reimbursement will be pro rata against the appropriate pack size. The pack size only needs to be endorsed for Part VIIIA Category C products where there are multiple pack sizes listed. Medicinal products page
Medicinal products outside of Part VIIIA (except special containers and items requiring reconstitution) If the quantity of a prescribed item is equal to or a multiple of a pack size the Pricing Authority has on their database, reimbursement will be based on that pack size.Otherwise the pack size will be assessed in the following order using:(i)      the next largest pack size to the quantity prescribed OR(ii)    the largest pack size available.Reimbursement will be pro rata against the appropriate pack size. The pack size only needs to be endorsed where there are multiple pack sizes available.If the product is less common, the net price of that pack before discount and ex VAT should also be endorsed. Medicinal products page
Unlicensed Specials and Imports  listed in Part VIIIB (except special containers) The minimum quantity pack listed will be reimbursed for any amount prescribed up to the minimum quantity. Subsequent quantities will be reimbursed at the additional price per ml/g/tab/cap up to the total quantity prescribed. No quantity endorsement required. Unlicensed specials and imports page
Unlicensed Specials and Imports  outside of Part VIIIB (except special containers) Reimbursement will be calculated pro rata from the declared invoice price per pack. Amount dispensed over pack size used and invoice price per pack size used to dispense from (minus any discount or rebate), e.g.:30/30
£90/packOther endorsements are required for non-Part VIIIB items; please check the page opposite for full details.
Unlicensed specials and imports page
Special containers (check the page opposite for criteria) Where the quantity ordered by the prescriber does not coincide with that of an original pack, the contractor shall supply in the special container(s) nearest to the quantity ordered, unless there is an overriding clinical need to dispense the exact amount.
Reimbursement is automatically based on the nearest number of special containers required to meet the prescription. If exactly half-way between two packs, contractors should round down.
Contractors are required to endorse the prescription form accordingly: amount dispensed over pack size used. Special containers page
Items requiring reconstitution (check the section opposite for criteria) When the quantity reconstituted from an original pack or packs is unavoidably greater than the quantity ordered and it has not been possible for the contractor to use the remainder for or towards supplying against another prescription, reimbursement will automatically be based on the nearest pack or number of packs necessary to cover the total quantity ordered. Contractors are required to endorse the prescription form accordingly: amount dispensed over pack size used. Section on reconstitution of certain oral liquids
Appliances (all those listed in Part IX) If the quantity of a prescribed item is equal to or a multiple of a listed pack size, reimbursement will be based on that pack size.Otherwise the pack size will be assessed from those listed in Part IX of the Drug Tariff. Reimbursement will be pro rata against the appropriate pack size. The pack size only needs to be endorsed where there are multiple pack sizes listed in Part IX.Please note: if there is more than one pack size available for an appliance but not all pack sizes appear in Part IX, the prescription must be dispensed from and clearly endorsed as one of the Drug Tariff listed pack sizes. Appliances page

Possible problems

What happens if quantity is ordered by directions only?

This can be calculated to discover the exact quantity and will be paid according. Please note that a month is taken to be 28 days unless indicated otherwise.

If the product is eye drops which have been prescribed by dosage instructions, e.g. two drops twice a day in left eye for two months, then the pharmacist will have to use their professional judgement to decide on how many bottles would be appropriate to meet those requirements. Reimbursement would be based on endorsement

 

What to do when the required quantity has not been specified on the prescription

Missing quantity (NOT Schedule 2 and 3 Controlled Drugs):

  • Confirm the required quantity with the prescriber, endorse the quantity with the letters “PC” (initial and date) in the endorsement column. Reimbursement will be based on the contractor’s endorsement.
  • If unsuccessful in contacting the prescriber, consider supplying enough for 5 days’ treatment and endorse the prescription with the letters “PNC” (initial and date) in the endorsement column.

Missing quantity for Schedule 2 and 3 Controlled Drugs (now including Temazepam):

  • If lacking total quantity in words or figures, can dispense if prescription is believed to be genuine and the intention is clear. Amend prescription indelibly so it has total quantity in words and figures. The pharmacist should sign the prescription.
  • If lacking total quantity in both words and figures, the prescription must be returned to the prescriber for amendment. The prescription cannot be dispensed until amended.


FAQs

Q. I have a prescription which states Ensure Plus milkshake style liquid 220ml (Flavour Not Specified) in the prescribing line. Can I dispense multiple flavours and claim for multiple dispensing fees?

No, as the Ensure Plus has been prescribed with an unspecified flavour rather than a direction to supply multiple flavours.

Only where the prescription specifically orders mixed, assorted or various flavours, and several flavours of the same preparation are dispensed and endorsed, will you receive dispensing fees equivalent to the total number of different flavours supplied.

The ‘flavour not specified’ listing is actually a way for prescribers to order a product which is available in multiple flavours, without specifying at the time of prescribing precisely which flavour is required. This enables the patient or the dispenser to decide which (single) flavour may be appropriate.

For electronic prescriptions, the prescriber can select ‘flavour not specified’ and then the Assorted Flavours (AF) option on their system. Multiple dispensing fees will only be paid on electronic prescriptions if the AF option has been ticked by the prescriber.

Q. I have received a prescription for “10ml Chloramphenicol 0.5% Eye Drops, use once daily in both eyes.” How many bottles will I be paid for dispensing?

The Pricing Authority will only reimburse you for the quantity ordered (in this case one 10ml bottle). Where in the professional opinion of the pharmacist it is in the patient’s interest to have two bottles supplied, the prescriber should be contacted in order to amend the prescription accordingly before dispensing.

Q. I have a prescription for 8 Caverject Dual Chamber, how many should I dispense?

This product is supplied in a pack containing 2 pre-filled syringes and the manufacturer has confirmed that each pre-filled syringe is a dual chamber item. If a prescription was received for 8 Caverject Dual Chamber items, you would be reimbursed for 8 pre-filled syringes (4 packs).

Q. I have a prescription for 30 Gaviscon Infant Sachets, how many should I dispense?

Gaviscon Infant Sachets are packaged as dual sachets. Pharmacists will be paid based on their endorsement for this item, so against a prescription for 30 sachets, pharmacists are able to supply either one pack (15 dual sachets) or two packs (30 dual sachets). If there is no endorsement, the Pricing Authority will assume that the prescribed number of dual sachets have been dispensed (i.e. in this case 2 complete packs).


Related resources

Split Pack Dispensing

Special Containers (including Items Requiring Reconstitution)

Special Container Database

Endorsement Guidance



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