Some of my recent tweets about community pharmacies claiming their COVID19 costs were turned into a Chemist+Druggist article today.
I shared my top tips on Twitter following the 28 June announcement that PSNC had reached an agreement with DHSC for community pharmacy contractors in England to reclaim their COVID19 costs incurred between March 2020 and March 2021 inclusive. Those are:
- Don’t rush. The DHSC claim window only opened on 5 July and more guidance will be forthcoming before the 15 August deadline.
- Read the actual Drug Tariff determination in addition to PSNC’s announcements and guidance.
- Evidence is essential.
My advice to contractors is that they should claim everything that falls within the criteria and which they can support with evidence. Claims will be scrutinised and may be reduced by DHSC. DHSC has also made clear in the Drug Tariff determination that capping may conceivably still be applied depending on the overall value of claims received. So it’s important for contractors not to risk participating in ‘double discounting’ by reducing their claims themselves and then experiencing a second reduction from DHSC. I also encourage contractors to use the time until 15 August to collate their evidence. This may include contacting e.g. accountants or IT providers or locum agencies to obtain comparative evidence of normal expenditure in previous years.
DHSC has confirmed that, in the event of a claim being reduced or refused, the contractor will have a right of appeal to the NHS Business Services Authority. This appeal process will run until 1 November 2022. Please feel free to contact me if you need assistance with an appeal or any other community pharmacy issue.