Greater Manchester Pharmacies Opening hours
PSNC Guidance: Managing a temporary pharmacy closure
If an emergency situation means a pharmacy needs to close for a short period, there are actions a contractor needs to undertake to ensure patients are able to access their prescriptions and that the contractor’s business can resume easily and effectively once the emergency has passed.
CPE Briefing Pharmacy opening hours in 2024 and for the remainder of 2023
This CPE Briefing provides guidance for community pharmacy contractors on the Terms of Service opening hours requirements around bank holidays for 2024 and for the remainder of 2023.
Community Pharmacy regulations changes affecting 100 core hour pharmacies
The Department for Health and Social Care has recently introduced amendments to the NHS (Pharmaceutical and Local Pharmaceutical Services) Regulations. These amendments allow Community Pharmacy contractors which originally opened under the 100 core hour exemption test, to apply to reduce their core hours to a minimum of 72 core hours per week. Applications must be granted by NHS Greater Manchester if a number of specific regulatory tests are met, which includes the protection/maintenance of “out of hours” Essential Services availability during Monday to Saturday evenings, and on Sundays.
We (NHS Greater Manchester’s Pharmacy Contracting Team) are drawing your attention to these regulatory changes as this will result in a reduction in community pharmacy opening hours where such applications are received, meet the regulatory tests, and therefore must be granted.
In such cases, locality teams, HWBs and the Local Pharmaceutical Committee will receive notification of the hours’ changes as this information will be material in terms of (for example) some locally commissioned services, and Pharmaceutical Needs Assessments. As our team is currently working through a significant number of applications, once these have been determined you will receive a spreadsheet containing details of the Community Pharmacy sites, their new core opening hours, and the date those hours will take effect. We will then continue to keep you informed of any future successful applications, at regular intervals, via the same method.
Additionally, the changes also allow any community pharmacy contractors to introduce rest breaks, if the timing of those breaks meets with the regulatory requirements.
For further information please click on the link Regulations and regulatory matters – Community Pharmacy England (cpe.org.uk).
In the meantime, if you have any queries regarding the above, please email email@example.com
Amendments to the Pharmaceutical Services & Local Pharmaceutical Services Regulations
Several regulatory amendments have been laid before Parliament that will come into effect on 25 May 2023. The amendments include provisions to make it easier to change core hours so staff can take rest breaks, temporarily enable coordinated closures via Local Hours Plans and implement business continuity arrangements should the pharmacy be unable to open and allow limited reduction of core hours for contractors who entered the Pharmaceutical List under the 100-hour exemption
To help contractors to understand the changes, CPE have produced a briefing.
Business Continuity Plan Template
Community Pharmacy England has developed the following business continuity plan template for use by contractors; this includes planning for business continuity during periods of disruption to IT services.
Pharmacy Business Continuity Plan for Temporary Suspensions template (can be added to existing template as Annex 6)
Managing a temporary pharmacy closure
If an emergency situation means a pharmacy needs to close for a short period, there are actions a contractor needs to undertake to ensure patients are able to access their prescriptions and that your business can resume easily and effectively once the emergency has passed.
The following Community Pharmacy England Briefing provides guidance on planning which can be undertaken, as part of business continuity planning, in advance of an emergency closure and actions that should be considered in the event of a closure:
Where a pharmacy has to temporarily close, the pharmacy must display information about the closure so that it is visable from the outside of the pharmacy. The following poster complies with the Approved Particulars for Displaying Notices Regarding a Temporary Suspension and can be used by pharmacy owners to inform patients:
Other local pharmacies will probably become busier due to the temporary closure of a pharmacy and the following poster can be displayed to explain this to patients: