Using your Schedule of Payment to monitor performance

Using your Schedule of Payment to monitor performance

Download our new factsheet about Using Your Schedule of Payment to Monitor Performance.

PSNC encourages contractors to conduct their own internal audits by checking their FP34 Schedule of Payment as soon as possible after receipt to identify unusual trends/ potential errors. The following list highlights aspects of your account you may wish to check: (please note this is list is not exhaustive)

Quick links

Check34 Webinar
NHSBSA’s Information Services Portal

What’s the best way to check for changes over time?

Monitoring net payments alone can be insufficient.

FP34 - drug and appliance costs picSolely looking at net payments is not sufficient for understanding patterns of reimbursement over a period of time, since these figures are distorted by changes to average item value (AIV) and by the advances which are issued and recovered each month*.

Over time, looking at relevant totals within the ‘Drug and Appliance Costs’ section, or those costs including fees, will give a more useful understanding of what is actually happening. As reimbursement for drugs and appliances can vary greatly month to month, pharmacy purchasing costs may follow a similar pattern and it may be useful to compare the trend of pharmacy costs with the total of drugs and appliances reimbursed.

*Click here for more information on advance payments and how payments are calculated.


Was there anything different about the dispensing month this Schedule refers to?

It is important to look at your Schedule with the month itself in mind; for example, were there any bank holidays or was it a shorter dispensing month? Or perhaps it is a month that some regular patients had ‘missed’ because they were on holiday and so had collected their medication early.


Has your average item value (AIV) changed?

A range of factors can affect the AIV including:

  • a change to the profile of drugs dispensed, for example if a patient with expensive items no longer visits the pharmacy
  • the patent for a high-volume or high-cost item has expired
  • prescribers request fewer or lower-value expensive items
  • a local change such as a competitor has just opened or closed
  • changes to Category M prices, practice payments or PPRS branded medicine price changes (any changes are posted as news stories on the PSNC website)
  • a change to the number of days in the dispensing period (i.e. 28 versus 56 day prescriptions) can also affect AIV

Data on national AIV trends can be found here.


Are there higher than normal levels of switching for your account?

FP34 - switched forms picPrescription switching statistics can usually be found on page 2 of the FP34 Schedule of Payments. It is important to monitor this closely, for example to ensure that prescription receipt SOPs are being followed in your pharmacy, exemption declarations are completed correctly where required, and that prescriptions are submitted in the correct charge group at the end of the month.

The Prescription Switching page contains tips on how to prevent prescription from being switched.


Are there any expensive items with a net ingredient cost (NIC) of over £100 missing from the itemised list on your Schedule?

FP34 - summary of expensive items picPSNC recommends, where possible, keeping a record of all expensive lines submitted to the Pricing Authority every month and then reconciling these items with your Schedule of Payment; this might be done by keeping copies of such prescriptions.

Please note: If a broken bulk claim has been made, the Schedule will only show the value of the prescribed quantity, even where the pharmacy has been paid for the full pack under the broken bulk arrangements.





What’s the best way to double-check for inputting errors?

FP34 - prescription data stats picAs the information declared in Sections 1 and 2 of the FP34c Submission Document is manually keyed into the system by Pricing Authority staff,PSNC is aware of some cases where this information has been keyed in incorrectly resulting in incorrect payment to the pharmacy contractor. Therefore it is advised that you check that:

  • There is no significant discrepancy between the number of forms/ items declared on the FP34c document and paid
  • The number of FP57 refunds matches your declaration
  • The number of items used to calculate the advance payment* matches the number of items which were declared for the relevant month
  • MUR/AUR/NMS payments match your declaration
  • Dispensary staff hours are correct (i.e. a total of all hours and not an average)

*Click here for more information on advance payments and how payments are calculated.


Prescription Rechecks

If you believe there has been an error at the Pricing Authority either in the level of switching, the list of expensive items reimbursed, or in transcribing information from the submission document, this should be reported to the Pricing Authority and a request for a recheck submitted. Further information can be found here.

Related Resources

Payment Factsheet 4 – Using Your Schedule of Payment to Monitor Performance

Understanding Your FP34 Schedule of Payment

Establishment and Practice Payments

Top-up Payments

Temporary Safeguarding Payments

Essential Small Pharmacies

Prescription Submission

Prescription Pricing Accuracy

Timing of monthly payments

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