Hope for UK pharmacy cuts?

theresa may at a round table

The UK’s new PM has raised hopes that she might reverse cuts to the UK’s community pharmacy sector, the Sunday Express reports.

National Pharmacy Association chairman Ian Strachan, who presented a speech on the planned cuts at the Australian Pharmacy Professional conference earlier this year, has urged PM Theresa May and new pharmacy minister David Mowat to halt the cuts.

Britain’s pharmacy sector has been battling the planned £170 million cut to community pharmacy funding, which it says may see the closure of up to 3000 pharmacies, for some time.

The Express reported over the weekend that four days before she became Prime Minister, Mrs May visited her local pharmacy in Berkshire and discussed the planned cuts with pharmacist Olivier Picard.

She had previously expressed support for the pharmacy, which may be one of those which closes if the cuts are implemented. Picard said at the time that he thought the new PM might be sympathetic to the fact that the pharmacy was in peril.

Strachan said it was “high time” that the Government called off the proposed cuts and sat around the table with pharmacists and patients to find an alternative.

“The right approach must surely be to invest in pharmacies so that they can relieve pressure on GPs and hospitals and maintain access to medicines close to where people live, work and shop,” he says.

“It’s really encouraging that Theresa May is taking a personal interest in community pharmacy. She is aware of the determined opposition to the cuts and that a record breaking two million petition was delivered to her predecessor as PM.” 

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