6CPA update: dispensing fees, services critical

Pharmacists' hands with script and medicine box

The next Community Pharmacy Agreement (6CPA) is the most important issue for community pharmacy owners and their staff and our number one priority at the Guild, national executive director David Quilty says.

“We know how much price disclosure is hurting pharmacy businesses and that the next Agreement must address this problem,” he writes in today’s edition of Forefront.

“The Guild has not left a stone unturned in ensuring every relevant politician and public servant fully understands how price disclosure is impacting pharmacy businesses, staff and patients.

“We have demonstrated the real, on-the-ground impact of price disclosure to Cabinet Ministers and local MPs around Australia.

“We have been working very closely with other pharmacy organisations, including the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia and the wholesalers.

“Most importantly, we have been taking on board the suggestions and concerns from Guild members,” he says.

Quilty says that the Guild has put a comprehensive proposal for the next Agreement to the Health Minister as well as other key political offices.

“Our number one priority is to secure the requisite level of remuneration for dispensing PBS medicines that will ensure that dispensaries are profitable in their own right,” Quilty writes.

“Second, there must be a transparent funding regime to fund services such as Dose Administration Aids and home deliveries, which until now, have been cross subsidised through generic trading terms.

“Third, there should be an increased investment in an integrated and more patient-focused approach to medication management.”

The Guild has made it clear to the Government that this negotiation is urgent and time critical.

“Guild members are facing another round of price cuts from 1 April and they need certainty, so they can continue investing in their businesses and employing staff,” he says.

“The Guild is committed to working constructively with the Government; however we cannot countenance the viability of our members’ businesses being put at risk by price disclosure.

“We will not agree to anything in the next Agreement that is not in our members’ best interests.”

He says the Guild welcomes all member input and feedback, which can be provided either through pharmacists’ local Branch or directly to its National President, George Tambassis, or himself.

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