In a parliamentary question, Sir John Hayes MP asked about the cost to the public purse of the Additional Roles Reimbursement Scheme (ARRS) and for the recruitment of pharmacists under ARRS.
The written answer revealed that between 2019/20 and 2021/22, total ARRS spending was £839m. In that same period, ARRS spending on the recruitment of clinical pharmacists totalled £387m. This represents over 46% of ARRS spending.
Malcolm Harrison, Chief Executive of the CCA said:
“NHS England has spent £387m and counting – or 46% of all ARRS funding – recruiting clinical pharmacists into Primary Care Networks (PCNs).
This is a staggering amount of money which has directly led to the shortfall of community pharmacists in England. This money could have been invested in frontline pharmacy staff allowing pharmacists to provide even more vital patient-facing care.
Robbing Peter to pay Paul is a short-sighted strategy. The pharmacy network needs investment especially as we gear up to deliver the Pharmacy First Common Conditions Service”.