Agenda item - Chair's Communications
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33.1 The Chair, Councillor Shanks, gave the following communications:
Provision – Community Equipment Service
“We are pleased to announce that NRS Healthcare have been successful in their bid to continue to provide the Community Equipment service across Brighton & Hove.
They provide daily living equipment and minor adaptations to people living in their own homes or within care settings and the new contract will start on 1st April and run for 5 years with the option to extend for 2 years.
The service is jointly funded by the Council and NHS Sussex who were both very satisfied with the NRS bid which met all of the quality and price requirements and will provide added value with a full fleet of electric vans, an improved digital offer for customers alongside the usual phone service, and a dedicated customer liaison role to engage with people who use the service and develop social value initiatives including; employability workshops, carer training and sponsorship of local charities.
Pharmaceutical Needs Assessment – Planned closure of Lloyds pharmacy in Sainsburys, Lewes Road, BN2 3QA
The Pharmaceutical Needs Assessment (PNA) for Brighton and Hove was approved by the Health and Wellbeing Board (HWB) and published October 2022. The PNA is a comprehensive statement of the need for pharmaceutical services of the population in its area. The Health and Wellbeing Board is responsible for developing and updating the PNA and it informs “market entry” for any new pharmacies. HWBs have the requirement to publish supplementary statements stating any changes to the PNA and if there is considered to be a gap in local pharmaceutical services. A supplementary statement is not required if no gap has been identified. NHS England jointly with NHS Sussex hold the contract for community pharmacy. The provision of NHS Pharmaceutical Services in community pharmacies is a controlled market. If an applicant wants to provide NHS pharmaceutical services, they are required to apply to NHS England (NHSE) to be included on a pharmaceutical list. NHSE and NHS Sussex will use the PNA when making decisions on applications.
On 31st January 2023 Brighton and Hove City Council (BHCC) were notified of Lloyds pharmacy in Sainsburys closing with effect from end of the day 22nd April 2023. Closure of Lloyds pharmacies in Sainsburys is happening nationally and throughout the South-east of England.
An extraordinary PNA Steering Group was held 9th February 2023 to discuss the impact the closure might have on access to pharmaceutical services. At the meeting East Sussex Local Pharmaceutical Committee, the representative body for community pharmacies reported that pharmacies that dispense a low volume of prescriptions per month will struggle to be financially viable and that approximately 6700 prescriptions dispensed per month is average for a pharmacy in England. This Lloyds pharmacy at Sainsburys had been dispensing approximately 1500 prescriptions per month.
Currently Lloyds in Sainsburys opening hours are 8.30am – 20.00 Monday – Wednesday, 8.30am – 21.00 Thursday – Friday, 8.00am – 20.00 Saturday and 11.00 – 17.00 Sunday. The pharmacies that are close by are: Weston’s (Coombe Terrace) a 5min walk to the north and Kamsons (1A Lewes Rd) a 9min walk to the south. All of the NHS and BHCC commissioned services provided by Lloyds are also provided by Weston’s. Overall, the opening hours for both pharmacies are shorter, Kamsons (1A Lewes Road) closes at 18.30 Monday - Friday and opens 9.00am – 13.00 on Saturday and Weston’s closes 18.00 Monday – Friday and opens 9.00am – 13.00 Saturday. Following the closure of Lloyds, there will be no pharmacy in the city open between 8 and 9pm on Thursday and Friday.
The nearest pharmacy to Lloyds open on Saturday afternoons is Ross Pharmacy, 3 York Place (18min walk, or on frequent bus routes) open until 5.30pm. For weekend provision the Asda pharmacies (Marina and Hollingbury) are open 9.00 – 20.00 Saturday and on Sundays 11.00 – 17.00 (Marina) and 10.00- 16.00 (Hollingbury) and Boots George Street opens 9.00 – 17.00 Saturday and 10.00 – 16.00 Sunday, and Boots North Street opens 9.00 – 18.00 Saturday and 11.00 – 17.00 Sunday and Boots St James Street opens Saturday 9.30am – 12.00 and 13.00 – 18.00. Outside of the city approximately 1.5 miles to the west the Tesco pharmacy at Holmbush shopping centre, Shoreham is open until 8pm six days a week.
There is no activity related to the award of an NHS community pharmacy contract. The PNA regulations stipulate that it must consider issues relating to current provision and whether or not there are identified current or future needs, improvements or better access requirements.
The recommendation in the PNA for the evening and weekend access to be reviewed by NHSE and NHS Sussex is ongoing. NHS Sussex is exploring options regarding access at evenings and weekends as outlined in the PNA including a putting in place a pharmacy rota service where there are gaps identified.
The PNA Steering group concludes that the closure of the Lloyds pharmacy in Sainsburys on Lewes Road results in reduced pharmacy hours 20.00 – 21.00 Thursdays and Fridays. The PNA Steering Group recommends for NHSE and NHS Sussex to review whether the reduction in hours proportionately affects pharmacy access and the mitigating actions required to reduce the impact of the closure.
33.2 RESOLVED – That the content of the Chair’s Communications be noted and received.