Charging For Services


Community Pharmacy offers a wide ranges of services free of charge.  These are services that can, and probably should, be charged for.

The LPC has pulled together two letters of advice

Pharmacy letter – Funding cuts April 2019

Stakeholder letter – Funding cuts April 2019

Services that the LPC Considers it reasonable to charge for (this list is not exhaustive and for more advice contact the LPC)

Dosette Boxes

Also know as MDS, CDS, Compliance Aids

Guidance from the CCG – BNSSG Managing Compliance Aid Requests 2018 final

Disability assessment form – Assessment tool for compliance aids

A pharmacy is only required to make a reasonable adjustment for patients who qualify under the Equality Act (2010) (Historically the Disability Discrimination Act 1995). A person is regarded as being disabled, if they have a physical or mental impairment, which has a substantial adverse effect on that person’s ability to carry out day to day activities. Additionally, the impairment must be either long term (that is, has lasted more than 12 months) or is likely to last more than 12 months or for the rest of the person’s life (for example multiple sclerosis).(1)It is worth noting that the person who makes this decision is the dispensing pharmacist, not the GP, social care or any other agency. For patients who do qualify, a reasonable adjustment should be made in order to ensure they are able to utilise their medication correctly.

Reasonable adjustments include (but not limited to):

  • The use of large print labels
  • Providing a patient with non click lock caps
  • Providing devices to make inhalers and dropper bottles easier to use
  • Medication Reminder (MAR) charts
  • Dosette boxes

The vast majority of patients who receive a dosette box do not qualify under the Equality Act and therefore you are providing a dosette box as a private transaction, free of charge. In these situations, it would therefore be reasonable to charge either the patient, the carer, social services or the CCG a fee for the supply of medication in a dosette box.

Avon LPC advises that a reasonable fee can be charged for this service (but not if it is provided as a reasonable adjustment under the equality legislation). It is at the discretion of the pharmacy contractor to determine whether to charge a fee and if so, the level of any fee. 

If you require more assistance with this, please contact Avon LPC.

(1) http://psnc.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/PSNC-Briefing-001.16-Equality-Act-2010.pdf

AHSN Adherence Support Final Report January-2019

Loaning Medication

Supplying medication to a patient whilst waiting for a prescription to be produced is unlawful. There is no provision in the medicines act that covers this type of supply. It is therefore important that surgeries, patients and other organisation understand that you should not be put into this compromising position. The only way medication can be provided to a patient without a prescription is as follows:

  • An emergency supply at the request of a patient
    • This is a private service and therefore incurs a fee and is chargeable to the patient regardless of whether they pay for their medication
    • Across Avon, there is a CCG commissioned service, which currently enables the pharmacy to pass the charges to the CCG.
  • An emergency supply at the request of a prescriber
    • This requires the prescriber to contact the pharmacy and make the request
    • The prescriber must furnish the pharmacy with a prescription within 72 hours

Avon LPC would therefore encourage pharmacies to lawfully dispense medication to patients and if required utilise either one of the two emergency supply routes rather than loaning medication to patients.

Delivery of Medication

This is a service that has for many years been offered free of charge by you as there is no fee provided to community pharmacies for the provision of this invaluable service. Many patients now rely on this service to enable them to obtain their medication if they are housebound. It is also noted that other organisation associated with the care of patients also rely on this service to ensure medication is with the patient when they visit.

Avon LPC advises that a reasonable fee can be charged for this service (but not by DSPs or for the supply of appliances). It is at the discretion of the pharmacy contractor to determine whether to charge a fee and if so, the level of any fee. 

If you require more assistance with this, please contact Avon LPC.