Chemist+Druggist have today published a second article in which the Chief Executive of the Association of Independent Multiple Pharmacies (AIM) makes a series of comments about Community Pharmacy England and other national pharmacy organisations.

We are publishing our response to the commentary here and Community Pharmacy England’s Chair is writing to AIM’s Chair to seek a meeting about collaborative working.

Community Pharmacy England is working hard to get the best outcomes for all community pharmacy owners. You can read more about our most recent Committee Meeting here: Committee hears directly from pharmacy owners and LPCs at July Meeting

We will continue to lead joint working across the sector on influencing initiatives, and today hosted a meeting on the future of this work with all three trade associations.

We also remain committed to positive change, including better engagement with everyone in the sector and our ongoing Governance Review. We are always open to constructive criticism and particularly to new ideas and solutions being suggested on the big issues that adversely affect all pharmacy owners.

Janet Morrison, Community Pharmacy England Chief Executive, said:

“We are disappointed that AIM continues to pursue division over sector unity: dividing the sector is not an effective influencing strategy and it does a disservice to all pharmacy owners. To be a constant critic is easy – to create and promote solutions, build persuasive relationships and find a way forwards is considerably more challenging.

Community Pharmacy England is the representative body for the whole of the community pharmacy sector and we consistently represent their views to Government and the NHS including on the devastating funding crisis that has been imposed upon us over the last seven years. Community Pharmacy England has significantly raised the profile of the sector politically in the past year and secured an extra £745 million [£645m via the Recovery Plan, and a £100m excess margin write-off last autumn] for community pharmacies – this is the largest investment in many years and it was the biggest investment in any primary care sector under the Government’s Recovery Plan.

The three AIM contractors on our Committee spent two days earlier this month, alongside all our Committee Members, considering the urgent issues that we need progress on including the critical ongoing negotiations on the £645m Access Fund and the current pressures as reported once again to us by the 800+ people who took part in our pre-committee polling. We are making the point that the sector needs additional core funding on a near daily basis to officials and Parliamentarians and will continue to make the case for that, but alongside that, it would be indefensible to throw away the £645m that Ministers have offered the sector and which businesses so desperately need.

We will continue to work with all pharmacy organisations – both national and local – to influence Government and the NHS for the benefit of all community pharmacy owners.”


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