NPA Essential: April 2021

NHS Terms of Service for DSPs
Regulatory changes to the NHS Terms of Service require all distance selling pharmacies (DSPs) to have a website accessible to the public from 1 April.
The National Health Service (Charges and Pharmaceutical and Local Pharmaceutical Services) (Amendment) Regulations 2020 introduced regulatory changes to the Terms of Service for community pharmacy contractors.
All DSPs now must have:

• A website that the public can use to access their services
• An interactive page that is clearly promoted when the website
is accessed
• A range of up-to-date materials on the interactive page to
promote healthy lifestyles by addressing a reasonable range
of health issues
• The DSP’s website URL included in its NHS website profile.
For full details, please read the NHS England and Improvement
guidance on National Health Service (Charges and Pharmaceutical
and Local Pharmaceutical Services) (Amendment) Regulations

For further information please contact the NPA Pharmacy Services team on 01727 891 800 or email pharmacyservices@npa.co.uk.

NPA Centenary date – 14 April
The National Pharmacy Association is 100 years old this year. To mark the centenary, the NPA plans a series of activities throughout the year. We look forward to celebrating with you the proud history of community pharmacy and shaping the future together.
HEE community pharmacy workforce survey 2021 Health Education England (HEE) is repeating its Community Pharmacy Workforce Survey across England this year to better understand the numbers and skill mix in the community pharmacy workforce and inform planning and future investment in education.
HEE’s national pharmacy team has commissioned the University of Manchester to carry out the pharmacy workforce survey. They will be working in partnership with pharmacy bodies such as the NPA, PSNC, CCA, AIM, RPS, APTUK, the primary care commissioning team at NHS England & NHS Improvement and the Department of Health and Social Care.
The NPA will continue to provide more information to contractors ahead of the launch of the survey in May.

Revalidation and CPD requirements for 2021
The GPhC and PSNI have announced their requirements for revalidation and CPD for 2021.

PSNI has announced the CPD year 2020/21 will run from 1 September 2020 to 31 May 2021, with a reduced amount of CPD required due to Covid-19 pressures. Full details can be found on the PSNI website.
Due to the ongoing challenges and pressures faced by pharmacy professionals during the Covid-19 pandemic, the GPhC has kept a close eye on the current situation and how it may evolve in the coming months. The table below explains the differences on revalidation requirements depending on the registration renewal deadline.

Registration renewal deadline Revalidation requirement Further information

Between 1 January and 30 November 2021


Pharmacy professionals will only be required to submit one reflective account for revalidation, along with the required declarations, and pay the applicable fee. 

The pharmacy professional standards that need to be reflected upon are:

- Standard 3: pharmacy professionals must communicate effectively

- Standard 6: pharmacy professionals must behave professionally

- Standard 9: pharmacy professionals must demonstrate leadership

Although not mandatory, the GPhC encourages pharmacy professionals to their experiences during the Covid-19 pandemic in their reflective account.

If a CPD record or peer discussion has already been completed, these can be
submitted next year if pharmacy professionals wish to do so – ensure they are
moved to the ‘excluded’ section before submitting the required reflective account.

GPhC can select submitted records for review – those saved in myGPhC but not submitted will not be reviewed.

After 1 December 2021 Pharmacy professionals will be required to resume the full revalidation requirement (four CPD,
one peer discussion and one
reflective account).
However, the GPhC is keeping this under review and will provide an update near the end of 2021.

NPA members take funding campaign to ministers’ own backyards

We have been able to rapidly deploy our community pharmacist members in the constituencies of Treasury and Health ministers: they have warned the government not to backtrack on promises to cover Covid-19 costs.
They displayed posters and distributed leaflets which warn that funding cuts and Covid costs have taken many pharmacies to the brink of closure.
Meanwhile, the NPA placed adverts in local newspapers and influential political websites, highlighting the £370m-plus Covid costs which the government has so far refused to reimburse pharmacies – despite a clear promise from the Prime Minister.
Protests took place throughout March in the constituencies of several government ministers, including the Health Secretary, the Prime Minister and the Chancellor.

History and Future
This year marks the NPA’s 100th birthday. As well as commemorating the past, we will also be using this centenary year as a springboard
to the future. To that end, we are consulting on our Core Beliefs, asking whether they are fit for the long term. Please email your thoughts to

NPA Core Beliefs in brief. Are these fit for the long-term future?
1.Community pharmacy works!
2.Community pharmacy can do so much
3.Community pharmacists are clinicians
4. Supply and service belong together
5. Face-to- face care is vitally important
6.A pharmacy without a pharmacist is
not really a pharmacy at all
7.Change is inevitable and necessary –
we are on a journey
8.A sustainable future for the sector is
as an efficient, tech-enabled, local,
integrated health service – the front
door to the NHS.

Pharmacy2U adverts pulled after NPA intervenes
The NPA welcomed the Evening Standard’s decision to remove potentially misleading advertising by Pharmacy2U, which involved pharmacy
listings in the Standard’s online business directory. As well as alerting the GPhC about this matter, the NPA had contacted the newspaper directly after having received complaints from NPA members.
Over the years the NPA has taken Pharmacy2U to task several times about its advertising. For example, the Advertising Standards Authority upheld our complaint about P2U’s claim to save the NHS £300 million a year (from patients using their services rather than the services of
community-based pharmacies).
We will remain vigilant on this matter, which is about fairness for our members and indeed the whole sector, as well as an informed choice for patients.
If you become aware of similar problems in the future – whether it’s Pharmacy2U or any other operator - please let the NPA know.

MPs debate pharmacy and the impact of Covid-19
A House of Commons debate on community pharmacy was led by Jackie Doyle-Price MP, chair of the All Party Pharmacy Group, which is supported
by the NPA and the other national pharmacy bodies. A total of 17 MPs took part in the debate, including Pharmacy Minister Jo Churchill and her Labour Party opposite, Alex Norris. Several MPs argued for the pharmacy sector to be put on a more secure financial footing.
The level of parliamentary support for community pharmacy is at an all-time high, which is testament to the heroics of pharmacy teams during the pandemic as well as determined advocacy by NPA members and others. The clear message from MPs is that funding must be sorted so that pharmacies can survive and help the NHS recover from the pandemic.

Lateral flow antigen testing for community pharmacy staff

NHSE&I has announced that all community pharmacies will be invited by PCSE to order their second round of lateral flow antigen tests. This is to allow all primary care staff providing NHS services to receive a new box containing 25 tests each to enable them to carry out testing for another 12 weeks, once their first set has run out...

Key points for pharmacy
• Place your orders via the PCSE online portal as soon as possible after receiving the invitation
• Pharmacy contractors who do not have access to the PCSE online portal should contact the PSCE: https://pcse.england.nhs.uk/contact-us
• Pharmacy contractors should order the test kits separately from all other weekly orders they make via the PCSE portal
• Any orders which contain other items along with the test kits cannot be processed and therefore will be cancelled
• Once an order is placed, pharmacy contractors will receive a confirmation email
• Do not duplicate orders as this will delay the process
• Pharmacy contractors should order one box for each patient-facing staff member who is providing NHS services, including any temporary staff, for example, locums
• There is a maximum order quantity of 54
• Pharmacy contractors ordering for more than 54 patient-facing members of staff will need to email urgentsupplies@nhs.net
• Covid-19 vaccination sites will not be required to order lateral flow testing kits for vaccinator staff because they will receive these automatically;
however, they will need to be ordered for other patient-facing staff working at vaccination sites.

Preparation for the arrival of tests:
Tests are expected to be delivered over a 2-3 week period commencing 25 March.

The following steps should be taken to ensure the pharmacy team is prepared for testing prior to the arrival of the tests:

• Read the NHSE&I dedicated standard operating procedure, guidance and frequently asked questions on lateral flow devices for asymptomatic staff testing for Covid-19 in primary care: https://www.england.nhs.uk/coronavirus/publication/asymptomatic-staff-testing-for-covid-19-for-primary-care-staff/
• Access the Health Education England (HEE) support information:
o Short step-by-step lateral flow self-swab training video for healthcarestaff: https://learninghub.nhs.uk/self-swab
o NHS staff instruction leaflet: https://www.england.nhs.uk/coronavirus/publication/asymptomatic-staff-testing-for-covid-19-for-primary-care-staff/

Arrival of tests:
• Distribute one box to each staff member as soon as possible after they are received – each box will contain 25 lateral flow tests, enough for 12 weeks
• The new kits are to be used once the previous supply has finished
• Asymptomatic patient-facing pharmacy staff will be initially requested to use the Innova lateral flow antigen testing kits, using nasal swabbing, twice weekly
• All patient-facing staff are required to report their results (positive, negative or void) to Public Health England via the online platform: https://www.gov.uk/report-covid19-result
• Staff can opt to participate in the AI trial at the point of submitting their results on the NHS Digital online platform:
o Report the results in the usual way via https://www.gov.uk/reportcovid19-result
o At the end of the normal reporting process, when prompted, use a smart phone or a tablet to take a picture of the test and upload this photo with your results
o Feedback on the process using the survey:https://nhsdigital.eu.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_dmRcejgUAcMgoDQ
• Following a positive result, pharmacy staff are required to follow the latest government guidance, self-isolate with their households, and obtain a PCR test to confirm the results.

NPA and Reed reach 100 pharmacy job placements milestone

The NPA and Reed have helped to get 100 young people job placements in pharmacy as part of the government’s Kickstart initiative to prevent long term unemployment. Hundreds of more placements are currently being processed...

Under the scheme, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) pays wages and employment costs for a six-month job placement, for 16 to 24 year olds on Universal Credit who are at risk of long term unemployment. The NPA’s partnership with Reed enables independent pharmacies to take part in the initiative and provides training.
Michael Samuel, who has a placement in Evans Pharmacy, Ty Elli in Llanelli, Wales, is the 100th Kickstarter to have started work in a pharmacy via by the NPA and Reed since the start of this year.
The 19-year-old, who has never worked in pharmacy before, says he is “really enjoying the experience”.
“Everyone is really nice and helpful. Pharmacy appealed to me – It’s a clean environment, there’s also lot of organising to be done, which I enjoy.”
Michael has been busy helping serve customers over the counter and processing stock in the pharmacy.
He adds: “Working here in the pharmacy has definitely made me think about it as a potential career.
“Everyone comes here for a bit of hope. I feel good that I am helping the community in some way.”
Mo Nazemi, the owner and Managing Director of Evans Pharmacy, Ty Elli has two Kickstarters in his pharmacy, including Michael.
He says: “The NPA made us aware of the scheme and made it accessible to us. We wouldn’t have known about this initiative otherwise. We’re grateful because it’s additional manpower in the pharmacy.
“Certainly this would have been ideal to have in December, during the second peak of Covid-19 cases where we had some staff isolate. It gives us
confidence that if a third peak were to arise, we would be that much stronger.”
He explains community pharmacies have been “operationally challenged” due to the pandemic so it’s a good time to be looking for talent in the local area.
“Certainly in the towns we’re in, it felt like the perfect situation for us to create more jobs in the community, help train up people and really try and find some talent.
“Pharmacy offers high quality jobs and the opportunity to be very skilled. Our plan is to definitely train them and by the time the placement is over they are well developed. We always use the NPA courses anyway so we will be putting them through the relevant training that the NPA provide as part of the scheme.”
The first phase and second phase of Kickstart applications via the NPA and Reed attracted over 1300 placements for community pharmacies. The NPA has recently opened up a fourth phase.
For more information go to www.npa.co.uk/kickstart-schem

Five employment law changes you need to know about in April 2021

1 April: National Minimum Wage increases
Statutory rates are reviewed and updated
each April. From 1 April the National Living
Wage will increase 2.2 per cent, from £8.72
to £8.91 an hour.
The National Living Wage normally applies
to workers aged 25 and over (excluding
those in the first year of an apprenticeship).
However, this year Chancellor Rishi Sunak
announced that it will be extended to 23 and
24-year-olds for the first time, representing
a substantial pay rise of almost 9 per cent of
this group.
National Minimum Wage rates for those
under the age of 25 will also increase as
• Workers aged 21 to 22:
£8.36 (up 2 per cent from £8.20)
• Workers aged 18 to 20: £6.56
(up 1.7 per cent from £6.45)
• Workers aged 16 to 17: £4.62
(up 1.5 per cent from £4.55)
• Apprentices: £4.30
(up 3.6 per cent from £4.15)

4 April: Other rates of pay increase, including maternity pay
The government’s new rates and thresholds
for 2021/22 also change the amount of other
types of pay that employees are entitled to.
From 4 April rates of Statutory Maternity
Pay, Statutory Paternity Pay, Statutory
Adoption Pay, Statutory Shared Parental Pay
and Statutory Parental Bereavement Pay will
increase to from £151.20 to £151.97 (or 90
per cent of an employee’s average weekly
earnings, whichever is lower).
The Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) standard rate
will also increase from 6 April 2021 to £96.35
per week.

4 April: Gender pay gap reporting (now extended until October)
Each year, employers with 250 or more
employees are legally required to report on
the difference in earnings between men and
women. This exercise helps organisations
to understand the size and causes of pay
disparity and provides HR departments with
insight they can use to identify strategies
which will narrow the gap.
Most public authority employers were
originally expected to publish their gender pay
gap information by 30 March, and private,
voluntary, and all other public authority
employers by 4 April. However, due to the
ongoing complications caused by coronavirus,
employers have been given a six-month
reprieve, with the deadline now extended
until 5 October for all employers.
While the Equality and Human Rights
Commission (EHRC) has confirmed that it will
not begin enforcement proceedings before 5
October, it has urged companies to report by
the April deadline if possible.

6 April: The introduction of IR35
IR35 off-payroll working rules will come
into effect on 6 April. This ‘anti-avoidance
tax legislation’ is designed to ensure those
who are employed in all but name are taxed
at a rate similar to employed individuals.
This will effectively shift the burden onto
employers to prove that workers are, in fact,
In addition to checking employees’ tax
status, it will also be necessary to conduct
a separate assessment of an individual’s
employment law status to confirm that they
are correctly classified – an issue that has
resurfaced recently due to the long-awaited
Uber decision (which confirmed that the company’s drivers are in fact workers, not self-employed contractors).
The upcoming IR35 changes will shine the
spotlight on employment status once more.

30 April: Furlough (now extended until the end of September)
One major change that businesses were
bracing for was the end of the furlough
scheme on 31 April.
However – somewhat predictably given
that many business will be unable to reopen
before 21 June as part of the government’s
four-stage plan – Chancellor Rishi Sunak
confirmed in the Budget announcement on
3 March that the scheme will be extended
yet again until the end of September.
Employees will continue to be entitled to
receive 80 per cent of their wages (subject
to a cap of £2,500 per month) and may be
continuously furloughed or placed on
flexible furlough, allowing them to work
part of their normal hours as things gradually
open up.
Until July, nothing will change. There
will be no employer contribution to wages,
other than employer National Insurance
contributions and minimum auto-enrolment
pension contributions (typically amounting to
5 per cent of employment costs).
However, those still using the scheme
from July onwards will have to contribute 10
per cent towards furlough wages (with the
government covering the remaining 70 per
cent), increasing to 20 per cent in August and
September (with the government covering 60
per cent).
For further advice or support contact
the NPA Employment Advisory
Service on 0330 123 0558 or email

NPA members can now help travellers get tested for Covid-19

Community pharmacies can now help travellers and holidaymakers take their Covid-19 tests before they fly out to international destinations...

The pandemic is changing the way we all live our lives and travel is one of those things – most trips abroad now require a negative Covid-19 result within 72 or 96 hours of departure, with many countries requiring a Fit to Fly certificate with a passport number on it.
Medicspot, an NPA Business Partner which provides private Covid-19 testing and GP services, has optimised its operational processes and regulatory policies, and increased capacity to offer pharmacies a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing service which provides fast turnaround
times for Covid-19 tests.
Currently pharmacies selling Covid-19 PCR test kits in England are required to self-declare to the Department of Health & Social Care (DHSC) to become a private Covid-19 testing provider. The new guidelines clarify the minimum standards pharmacies are expected to meet when selling Covid tests to organisations or members of the public.
Medicspot provides an end-to-end service to manage the bulk of these requirements; giving pharmacies the ability to sell Covid-19 PCR test kits whilst meeting their governance obligations. Medicspot has developed a support tool to help NPA pharmacies that sell their testing kits to self declare with DHSC. This can be found by going to: bit.ly/2OP9EbT

What is PCR testing?
A Covid-19 PCR test looks for the presence of the virus on a sample take from the nose and throat. Medicspot has partnered with a leading UKAS accredited laboratory to provide this testing to ensure fast and accurate results.

If done correctly, the ability of this test to detect the virus (sensitivity) is 98 per cent and the ability of the test to correctly identify those who are not infected (specificity) is 99 per cent.

How your pharmacy benefits
Medicspot offers pharmacies an “endto-end hassle-free” solution for selling Covid-19 tests. They can help pharmacies generate additional profit without adding extra operational or customer service complexity.

NPA members who choose to provide this PCR testing service via Medicspot will also get exclusive discounts.
Rikta Desai, NPA Business Partnership Manager, said: “As the front door to the NHS during this pandemic, community pharmacies are seeing more people come through their doors than ever before.
“Our partnership with Medicspot presents a great opportunity to help holidaymakers and at the same time get started with Covid-19 testing before the market soars post-lockdown.
“We hope members value this additional revenue stream and get on-board as soon as they can.”
Additional benefits in providing the Medicspot test kits include:

• Medicspot deal with all customer support,
logistics and results
• Reliable service so you don’t have
unhappy customers who miss their flights
• Dedicated customer service team will save
you up to 40 post-sales call a day
• Royal Mail return label included to save
you posting costs
• UKAS accredited laboratories analysing
your customer samples
• Free doctor consultations included for
customers with positive test results
• Full confidence knowing the whole service
is taken care of by Medicspot
• A small minimum order quantity so it’s
easy to get started
• Revenue generator for pharmacies. Make
a minimum £25 profit for every test sold
(based on matching RRP of £149)

For more information go to www.npa.co.uk/pcr-test-kits

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