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The Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC) has asked community pharmacy contractors to participate in the Health Education England (HEE) Community Pharmacy Workforce Survey 2021.

The results of the voluntary survey will help to inform the future planning and funding in relation to the development of the community pharmacy workforce across the NHS in England.

Contractors will shortly receive an email from the NHS Business Services Authority (NHSBSA) inviting them to participate in the survey.

The data from the previous workforce survey has also been used to the benefit of contractors by PSNC and LPCs in local and national negotiations on the development of community pharmacy services.

The data collection is scheduled to start on May 7. The intention is to work towards a yearly data collection from 2022.

HEE’s national pharmacy team has commissioned the University of Manchester and their research partner ICF to undertake an England-wide community pharmacy workforce survey.

This has involved them working in partnership with the primary care commissioning team at NHS England & NHS Improvement, the Department of Health and Social Care, the national pharmacy bodies, including PSNC, CCA, AIM, NPA, RPS and APTUK, and the General Pharmaceutical Council.

Survey procedure

On May 7, those contractors that chose to take part in the survey will receive another email from the NHSBSA containing a link to the online questionnaire.

The survey will close by mid-June and ICF will aggregate the data and share the anonymised dataset with the University of Manchester and HEE.

The University of Manchester will analyse the data and produce a report. The anonymised and aggregated dataset will be published on data.gov.uk in Autumn 2021 and the findings will be used to inform education commissioning for future workforce developments.

“The survey questionnaire will ask for the number of people, the number of full-time equivalents (FTE) and any vacancies in each of nine staff categories employed in community pharmacy. Taking this approach will guarantee consistency with the 2017 survey and will allow workforce trend analysis to be undertaken to understand how the size of the community pharmacy workforce has changed over this period,” the PSNC said in an update to community pharmacy contractors.

“Contractors will be asked to provide information for the staffing levels in the week in which they are completing the questionnaire or, if appropriate, the most recent complete seven-day period for which they have the necessary figures,” it added.

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