Funding Announcement: October Drug Tariff Changes

September 27, 2019

The October 2019 Drug Tariff contains a number of changes relating to reimbursement and remuneration that community pharmacy contractors and their teams need to be aware of.  The following information has been published by PSNC:

Serious Shortage Protocols (SSPs)

Amendments have been made to Parts I, II and IIIA of the Drug Tariff to recognise SSPs. The new wording provides details of the endorsement requirements, reimbursement and remuneration for supplies made in accordance with SSPs.

Reimbursement is for the medicine or appliance supplied in accordance with an SSP, not the originally prescribed medicine/appliance. Payment is normally calculated on the basis that the exact quantity ordered by the prescriber has been supplied, apart from any supply made against an SSP for an alternative quantity. Additionally, where a supply is made against an SSP, the reimbursement price will account for VAT payment.

Aside of the usual dispensing fees and allowances for any items supplied in accordance with an SSP, pharmacy contractors will receive an additional SSP fee of £5.35 per item.

For guidance on claiming payment for SSPs, click here to view the PSNC factsheet.

For general information and background on SSPs, click here to view PSNC’s SSPs page.

Establishment Payment changes

Amendments have been made to Part VIA to update the monthly Establishment Payment levels. This is a continuation of the phasing out of this payment. The table below shows the new amounts for pharmacy contractors in England:

Number of items per month from 1 October 2019 Monthly Establishment Payments from 1 October 2019
2,500 – 2,829 £582
2,830 – 3,149 £605
3,150+ £628

The monies from the Establishment Payment are being reinvested elsewhere to keep the overall funding sum at £2.592bn.

Transitional Payments

Amendments have been made to Part VIA to add Transitional Payments to the Drug Tariff. All contractors will automatically receive Transitional Payments from October 2019. 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 1 October 2019 Monthly Transitional Payment from 1 October 2019
0 – 2500 £100.00
2501 – 5000 £700.00
5001 – 19167 £780.00
19168+ £833.33

For more information on the Transitional Payments, click here to view the PSNC news story.

We have also updated the LPC website with these Drug Tariff changes for future reference.
You can find our Drug Tariff page HERE.


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