The National Pharmacy Association (NPA) has urged for a national vote with ‘triple lock’ approval to green-light reforms in the Local Pharmaceutical Committees (LPCs) and the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC).

New structures should win the support of contractors as a whole, a majority of independents and a majority of multiples to ensure that the structures work for both parts of the sector, the pharmacy body has opined.

This is one of the key suggestions in a paper published by the NPA as part of discussions on next steps following the publication of the Wright Review report into pharmacy contractor representation in England.

The NPA is also calling for the PSNC to establish a shadow governance board external to its existing structures to take forward proposals.

Any independent expertise necessary to help facilitate the process of discussion should report to that shadow board – not to the existing structures.

NPA Chief Executive Mark Lyonette said: “The Wright Review has highlighted the challenges that we face and we remain committed to supporting a process of change. We believe that through collaborative working there will be a solution that meets the needs of all parts of the contractor base. But the distinctive voice of independents must be heard and the new structure must work for everyone, big and small.”

The PSNC recently invited contractors, LPCs and trade associations to answer four questions on how the reform process should proceed.

The NPA is encouraging independents to respond to the PSNC consultation to maximise the voices of independents throughout this process.

Published in June, the Wright Review made 33 recommendations in relation to new integrated structures for Local Pharmaceutical Committees and the PSNC.

At the outset of this process, the NPA set out a number of principles that it wished to see applied to any future structure of representation and support, including continued investment in local leadership and improved accountability.

The NPA also emphasised the importance of equitable governance, to ensure that the voices both of independents and multiples are fairly represented in local and national leadership.

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