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Fewer English dispensing practices – but more patients

NHS statistics reflect the increasing rural workload burden

November 25th 2015

Tagged: NHS statistical reports England

By Ailsa Colquhoun

Data published by the NHSBA shows that in April 2015 there has been a reduction of 14 dispensing practices in England, and a 40,000 fall in number of dispensing patients. However, the number of medical patients per practice continues to rise – by 50,000 since 2014.pastedImage

These figures reflect the challenges of providing medical services to increasing numbers of medical patients in rural areas, despite reducing cross subsidy from dispensing income.

Amalgamations and pharmacy openings in England may be among the influences on the number of dispensing practices in England, although reductions in the number of dispensing patients point to closures or losses to pharmacies.

Any dispensing practice considering amalgamation should seek advice on affect of amalgamation on their dispensing list. Members can contact the DDA Office for advice.

The table below provides the headline figures for the past 10 years. Click here for the NHS spreadsheet.

England20052006200720082009201020112012201320142015
Dispensing Doctors52795353531155535,731577858306061620663006396
Dispensing Practices11791166114911351139112911181086107610591045
Dispensing Patients (Millions)3.483.483.493.513.513.463.433.343.313.273.23
Medical Patients in a dispensing practice (Millions)8.2748.2748.2138.2708.238.168.21
Dispensing Patients per Practice29502986303830933085306330643079307330853087
Medical patients per practice7264732973467615764977057852
Dispensing Patients per Doctor659650657632613599588552533519504
Dispensing Doctors per Practice4.484.594.624.895.035.125.215.585.775.956.12