DH legal challenge

NPA Essential

DH legal challenge

The NPA has taken the next step in its legal challenge to the Department of Health’s (DH) decision to cut community pharmacy funding in England.

The NPA formally launched High Court legal proceedings against the Secretary of State’s decision to impose a package of measures, including a funding cut. The challenge is partly based on the DH’s failure to consider the impact its cuts will have on the elderly, the disabled and people from black and minority ethnic communities.

Had the DH properly considered the impact of its cuts, it would have realised that the cuts will have a disproportionate effect on people with legally protected characteristics and those who live in the most deprived areas of England, where there is already a lack of NHS healthcare provision.

“We have been driven to take this step by the intransigence of the DH in the face of widespread public concern about the approach they are taking to the vital front line service provided by local pharmacies”, says Ian Strachan, Chairman of the NPA.

“Even as we take this next step, we invite the DH to step back from the precipice and enter into constructive discussions about a positive way forward for the sector and the NHS.”

The High Court is in recess until the second week of January, so no decision can be made before then about whether the NPA will be granted leave to proceed.

The NPA is also a named ‘interested party’ in separate proceedings launched by the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee.

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