Rowlands Pharmacy to reduce branch numbers

Rowlands Pharmacy to reduce branch numbers

February 21, 2019

Rowlands Pharmacy has announced plans to reduce the size of its pharmacy network by 70 pharmacies.

The 69 pharmacies in England and one in Wales will be put up for sale so that Rowlands can focus on investing in new ways of working, such as automation.

With recent developments in the NHS pointing towards the need for more preventative healthcare, Rowlands will be exploring models that will enable its pharmacy teams to provide the same high levels of care but in a more efficient way.

Kenny Black, Managing Director of Rowlands Pharmacy, said: “We are committed to investing in the future and changing our dispensing processes in order to deliver sustainable, profitable growth for the business, enable colleagues to spend more time with patients and reinforce the role of Rowlands pharmacies as local health care hubs. As a result, we need to focus our investment on a slightly smaller Rowlands pharmacy network than we have today.”

PSNC Chief Executive Simon Dukes commented:

“We know that the NHS and HM Government are looking to community pharmacies to offer more patient focused services to support the delivery of their recently published vision for the delivery of primary healthcare. This will require transformative changes for the sector, including a shift away from the current focus on dispensing volumes; changes to working practices; and an increased focus on efficiencies, automation and technology to free up community pharmacists’ time to offer more clinical services. It will not mean that more money is available for doing the same things that we have always done.

Given the urgent need for these significant changes in practice, which must be supported by a multi-year funding settlement, it is no surprise that some of the larger pharmacy businesses are already reviewing their networks carefully. Rowlands Pharmacy’s decision to reduce the size of its pharmacy network almost certainly reflects these upcoming changes, and it may also be a symptom of the very difficult financial situation that so many community pharmacies currently find themselves in. In this environment our advice to anybody considering purchasing a new pharmacy is to seek specialist professional financial advice first. Like all pharmacy businesses, potential buyers should be thinking carefully about what changes their pharmacies are likely to need to make to fit into and remain profitable in the future models for the sector.”

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