VIDEO: MP SPEAKS UP IN SUPPORT OF LOCAL PHARMACIES

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Isle of Wight MP Bob Seely has stepped up his calls for Government assistance to protect local pharmacies from closure.

Despite the significant role pharmacies are playing as they remain open during the coronavirus pandemic it is estimated that the cost to them of doing so is around £370million nationally. It is feared three-quarters of independent pharmacies could be forced to close within the next 12 months, while up to 85% of community pharmacies could be in financial deficit by 2024.

Mr Seely, who previously raised the plight of local pharmacies in his own parliamentary debate last summer, has again spoken up in parliamentary session to seek Government support. He has also written to Health Secretary Matt Hancock and Chancellor Rishi Sunak seeking their support on the issue.

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Speaking in a Westminster Hall debate last Thursday, Mr Seely said:

“Pharmacies, especially independent pharmacies, are a friendly, valued and, above all, trusted voice. For the NHS and the nation, they take pressure off accident and emergency departments, GP surgeries and other parts of the health service.

“At a modest cost, they deliver very significant benefits. They are a critical part of primary care that pays significant dividends, as well as alleviating pressure elsewhere.

“There must be a financial model that allows pharmacies, especially independent pharmacies, to make a reasonable living for the exceptionally valuable work that they do nationally and in their communities.”

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While welcoming a previous assurance from the Prime Minister that pharmacies would be reimbursed, Mr Seely said he wants reassurance from the government that this is still the case as it was not mentioned in the Chancellor’s recent budget.

Bob’s said:

“Whilst support from the government has been pledged, it is yet to arrive, leaving an average financial deficit of £32,000 per pharmacy.

“Other parts of the NHS such as GPs have had £197.5 million in costs reimbursed across 6,800 practices as a result of not being physically open. NHS dentists have also received permanent payments for lost revenue as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Pharmacies have not yet received the same level of support.”

“Pharmacies need certainty. We have six independent pharmacies on the Island and they are all highly valued but I worry for their future and the impact potential closures could have on the communities they serve.

“Pharmacies have been a lifeline to people during the pandemic with many staying open to continue to serve their patients, often delivering medicines at their own costs to the homes of the vulnerable and at-risk patients.”

Mr Seely has also said pharmacists such as Timothy Gibbs at Yarmouth Pharmacy, who was recently granted the Freedom of Yarmouth for his work during the pandemic, continued to lose money by fulfilling their medical roles, an issue exacerbated by lower demand for other non-medical goods that pharmacies sell.

The views/opinions expressed in these comments are solely those of the author and do not represent those of Island Echo. House rules on commenting must be followed at all times.
7 Comments
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Helen Highwater
Helen Highwater
2 months ago

Once again, Island Echo’s idiot bot plays censor.

Jack in the Box
Jack in the Box
Reply to  Helen Highwater
2 months ago

Careful, bans are more frequent now too.

Huso1988@hotmail.co.uk
Reply to  Jack in the Box
2 months ago

They ban anyone speaking negative against their precious Covid.

Arthur Sausage
Arthur Sausage
2 months ago

The closure of LOCAL PHARMACIES bad idea.

When meds are needed the staff go out of their way to help.

Can’t see the sence dealing with an online service !

Miss sensible
Miss sensible
Reply to  Arthur Sausage
2 months ago

They also play a key role with the flu vaccine rollout.
And of course now the covid jabs will need top ups they will be needed .
Once they have gone it will be 2 late !!!!

Know it all
Know it all
Reply to  Arthur Sausage
2 months ago

AS is right. Local Pharmacies are worth their weight in gold. My pharmacist discovered i had high blood pressure during one of her routine assessment’s. I had not a clue. She has helped my family on many occasions
I am heartily sick of doing things on line. On medical issues i WANT to talk to a real person.
Whatever happened to try your Pharmacist first ?

Steven
Steven
Reply to  Know it all
2 months ago

The people who think they are higher than anyone else on the island are trying to be number one over the UK but all they do is screw up rip hard working people off and then pat there backs just after rubbing there hands

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