Pharmacy Quality Scheme (PQS) 2020/21

Pharmacy Quality Scheme (PQS) 2020/21

July 24, 2020

Part 1 of PQS has just been announced by PSNC.  Its focus is ensuring contractors have put in place all reasonable measures to reduce the risk of COVID-19 to themselves, staff and customers. It is an action checklist, is fairly straight forward and most contractors will already have completed most of the actions.

Details and the action checklist can be found at:

View the Part 1 2020/21 PQS Checklist and PSNC support materials

A new Pharmacy Quality Scheme (PQS) for the first part of 2020/21 has been announced today (13th July 2020). The focus of the scheme is ensuring community pharmacy contractors and their teams have put in place all reasonable measures to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, protecting both themselves and the people using their services.

This scheme and the second part of PQS in 2020/21, which is being developed for the second half of the year, replace the original 2020/21 scheme that PSNC had agreed with the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) and NHS England and NHS Improvement (NHSE&I), and which, prior to the start of the pandemic, had been due to commence in April 2020.

Scheme requirements

To meet the requirements of the new scheme, contractors need to complete all 14 actions set out in a checklist, all of which relate to the response to the pandemic; many contractors will already have undertaken most if not all of the actions in the checklist over the last few months.

Download the Part 1 PQS 2020/21 Checklist for the COVID-19 response

PSNC has also developed the following support materials for contractors:

Funding and claims

The funding made available for the scheme is £18.75m and all contractors meeting the requirements can claim a payment of £1,630 via the NHSBSA’s Manage Your Service (MYS) portal.

Claims via MYS can be made between 14th July 2020 and 23:59 on 29th January 2021.

Any residual funding not paid to contractors within the Part 1 scheme will be distributed as part of payments in the Part 2 2020/21 scheme. Payments will be made by the NHSBSA as soon as possible after a claim has been submitted, with, for example, any claims submitted by 5th August 2020 being paid on 1st September 2020.

A few important points to note:

Any claims submitted by 5th August 2020 will be paid to contractors on 1st September 2020. Contractors submitting after 5th August 2020 will be paid in line with the payment schedule below:


Claim submitted by Paid to contractor
5th September 2020 1st October 2020
5th October 2020 1st November 2020
5th November 2020 1st December 2020
5th December 2020 1st January 2021
5th January 2021 1st February 2021
29th January 2021 (Closing Date) 1st March 2021


You have to claim for completion of the whole checklist – there is no payment for completing part of it

This Part 1 of PQS will be funded by £18.75m so each contractor that completes it will receive £1630

Details of Part 2 of PQS are expected soon (likely to start in October 2020) and will be funded by £56.25m. Any money from Part 1 PQS not claimed by contractors will be re-allocated into Part 2.


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