CPCF Funding News: Transitional Payment levels agreed

CPCF Funding News: Transitional Payment levels agreed

September 26, 2019

Details regarding the structure of the Transitional Payments for 2019/20 have now been finalised.

As part of the recently announced five-year CPCF settlement, it was agreed between PSNC, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) and NHS England and NHS Improvement (NHSE&I) that community pharmacy contractors would receive monthly Transitional Payments.

These payments are intended to support preparations for a more service-based role and they are being made in recognition of costs associated with changes such as implementation of the Falsified Medicines Directive (FMD) and integration into Primary Care Networks (PCNs). These payments are not linked to any specific activity, but instead are a payment made to support the transitional costs envisaged.

All contractors will automatically receive Transitional Payments from October 2019. Payments range from a minimum of £100.00 a month for the lowest dispensing pharmacies, to £833.33 a month for those dispensing 19,168 items or more per month.

Please note: These monthly Transitional Payments are separate to the additional one-off Transitional Payment which is available to pharmacies signing up to provide the new NHS Community Pharmacy Consultation Service (CPCS) by 1st December 2019 (worth £900), or by 15th January 2020 (£600). For information on how to register to provide the CPCS and claim the supplementary Transitional Payment via the Manage Your Service (MYS) portal, click here.

The Transitional Payments are being funded by repurposing monies from the managed withdrawal of Establishment Payments and Medicine Use Reviews (MURs), both of which are being phased out as part of the CPCF settlement.

From October 2019, Establishment Payments will be reduced to half the previous rate, and the total MUR allowance for 2019/20 has been reduced to 250 per pharmacy (down from 400 in previous years). The leaves some of the agreed overall funding sum of £2.592bn undistributed, and it is this money which is being used to fund the Transitional Payments.

Transitional Payments will be paid on a monthly basis according to the number of prescription items submitted and reimbursed by the NHS Business Services Authority (NHSBSA) in the relevant month, as set out in the table below:

Number of items per month from 1st October 2019 Monthly Transitional Payment from 1st October 2019
0 – 2,500 £100.00
2,501 – 5,000 £700.00
5,001 – 19,167 £780.00
19,168+ £833.33

The above table will be published in Part VIA of the October 2019 Drug Tariff.

These figures will apply to Transitional Payments for the year 2019/20 i.e. to monthly payments from October 2019 to March 2020.

Negotiations on funding distribution, including the Transitional Payments, for 2020/21 are still ongoing – information will be shared with contractors as soon as is possible.

Contractors will also be aware that as part of the funding settlement for 2019/20, some funding has been allocated to fund the new CPCS and £10m has been set aside to fund any Serious Shortage Protocols (SSPs). In the event that these monies are not fully distributed (for instance if no SSPs are issued) this funding will be delivered to pharmacies through the Transitional Payments later in the financial year – this means that the figures in the above table may be subject to change as March 2020 approaches. Contractors will be informed of any changes.

Simon Dukes PSNC Chief Executive, said:

“The Transitional Payments are a core part of the five-year CPCF deal and they recognise the work that all pharmacies will have to undertake to deliver the range of new services that have been agreed. PSNC was pleased to agree the payments which also recognise contractors’ costs in implementing the requirements of FMD.”

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. How do I claim the Transitional Payments?
Contractors do not need to claim the monthly Transitional Payments; these will be paid automatically by NHSBSA as part of your normal monthly payment processes. However, contractors do need to claim the separate one-off supplementary Transitional Payment related to the CPCS – further details on this are available here.

Q. What exactly are the Transitional Payments for?
The Transitional Payments were agreed between PSNC, DHSC and NHSE&I to support preparations for a more service-based role. Alongside incentive payments through the Pharmacy Quality Scheme, the payments recognise pressures in relation to the engagement with local PCNs, implementing new working practices and staff training to support new services, as well as ongoing change such as the move to universal Health Living Pharmacy status, preparation for SSPs and introduction of FMD. In 2019/20, a supplement to the Transitional Payment is also available to pharmacies signing up to provide the new CPCS by 1st December 2019 (worth £900), or by 15th January 2020 (£600).

Q. What will happen to the Transitional Payments after March 2020?
Transitional Payments, and all other payments, for April 2020 onwards are the subject of ongoing negotiations between PSNC, DHSC and NHSE&I. Further details on funding for 2020/21 will be published soon as possible.

Q. When will we see an increase in the Transitional Payments, for example if no SSPs are issued?
PSNC, DHSC and NHSE&I will be carefully monitoring the distribution of funding this year. If there looks likely to be an under-delivery, for instance if no SSPs are issued, leaving the £10m set aside for SSPs unspent, then adjustments to the Transitional Payment will be considered late in the financial year. Contractors will be informed of any changes as soon as possible.


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