Daniel Zeichner MP lends support to Cambridge pharmacies

Cambridge MP Daniel Zeichner last week visited the city’s Petersfield Pharmacy on Mill Road after it raised serious concerns about the Government’s decision to cut the funding of community pharmacies.

The Government will be slashing the funding of community pharmacies by £113 million this year and a further 7% next year. Earlier this year the Government said this may mean that some pharmacies have to close, but recently it has not been able to confirm how many or which pharmacies could be affected.

Petersfield Pharmacy is highly valued by local residents and offers many services to patients including flu vaccinations, free medicine deliveries, stop smoking services, as well as healthy living and appropriate self-care advice. The proposed cuts by the government will impact the number of services pharmacies are able to provide as well as the number of staff to administrate the essential care.

Anil Sharma, pharmacist at Petersfield Pharmacy said; “We were really pleased to welcome Daniel to
our store today and talk to him about the wide range of services we provide. We also took the opportunity to talk to him about the worrying funding cuts imposed by the Government.
I’m really concerned about the impact it is going to have on my patients and the local community in Cambridge. We work very hard to ensure that all our patients have the medicines they need, when they need them and that they understand how to use them and are leading the healthiest lives that they can. With these funding cuts we are going to struggle to manage and to continue to provide all of the services that we want to.”

Daniel Zeichner MP said; The Government’s plan to force through these cuts for community pharmacies is deeply reckless and short sighted. Community pharmacies take pressure off other parts of the NHS and save the NHS money by keeping patients out of GP surgeries and A&E.
It is clear local people value their community pharmacies yet the Government seem hell-bent on pressing ahead with this incoherent, self-defeating and wholly unacceptable policy. These plans are a false-economy that will hit the deprived, elderly and long-term sick hardest.”

Rita Bali, Executive Officer at the Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Local Pharmaceutical Committee said: “We are very concerned about these funding cuts and we don’t understand how they are compatible with the stated aims of the NHS and Government to provide higher quality and more accessible care for patients. Although we are unlikely to see pharmacies closing immediately, the cuts are likely to lead to pharmacies in Cambridgeshire having to reduce staffing, cut opening hours and reduce some of the services offered, such as home delivery of medicines and the supply of medicines in compliance aids. All of which affect patients and will also of course add to the pressure already being placed on local GP practices and hospitals.”

PHOTO CREDIT – Phil Mynott Photo