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NPA raises concern over ‘rising cost of rent’ for community pharmacies in NHS health centres

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The National Pharmacy Association (NPA) has been in dialogue with the senior management of NHS Property Services to bring down the rent for community pharmacies based in NHS health centres.

Association said: “Community pharmacies based in NHS health centres are struggling to make ends meet due to expensive rental rates.”

It is calling for pharmacies to have the ability to renegotiate rental rates part way through a contract.

Gareth Jones, Director of Corporate Affairs at the NPA, said landlords need to take into account that pharmacy spending power is shrinking and the previous formula used to set rental rates is no longer fit for purpose.

“It no longer makes sense to calculate based on historical assumptions about how many prescriptions the co-located GP will generate for the pharmacy,” he said.

“All health centre landlords should recognise that rents are increasingly unaffordable. It is in the long-term interest of both the landlords and tenants that a realistic solution is found as a matter of urgency.”

One NPA member who owns a chain of pharmacies in London told the NPA his rent prices have doubled in the last two years.  The member who didn’t want to be named, has three pharmacies in NHS properties.

He said: “On top of the spiralling rent prices we also have crazy service charges”.

Since Spring 2022 the association has been in dialogue with the senior management of NHS Property Services about concerns over the rising cost of rent for its members relative to income.

“They have given the NPA an undertaking that the issue of pharmacy rents will be taken to their board for scrutiny,” the association said.

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