Tuesday, June 15, 2021
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Budget 2021 “disappointing” For Pharmacists


Pharmacists are “disappointed” that Budget 2021
contains no new funding initiatives to support the pharmacy
profession to achieve quality patient
outcomes.

President of the Pharmaceutical Society of
New Zealand, Professor Rhiannon Braund, says “while it was
anticipated that this would be a “slim” budget, it is
disappointing that there is no provision of support for
pharmacy healthcare services.”

According to
Professor Braund, “there is additional funding for general
practice, but nothing for the wider primary care team,
particularly pharmacists who were so critical to providing
primary care during COVID-19.”

There is also $14
million of forecast savings for 2020/21 which will be
returned to the Crown, that was intended to go to
“critical” community pharmacies.

The $14 million
of “savings” to be returned to the Crown from this
initiative is because the Crown “made the $18 million fund
unattainable for pharmacy,” says Braund.

Professor
Braund acknowledged that “while the investment into the
new health system and transition plans are good to see and
may have benefit for pharmacy, it is not clear what this
will look like.”

Other new health spending in this
year’s Budget includes:

  • $2.7 billion additional
    funding over four years for District Health Boards, which
    are set to cease operating in June next year as part of the
    Government’s health reforms, to address cost
    pressures.
  • An extra $200 million for Pharmac for new
    medicines, bringing its budget to more than $1.1 billion per
    year.
  • $1.5 billion to buy COVID-19 vaccines and fund
    the immunisation programme.
  • $516.6 million to
    develop and run effective health infrastructure, including a
    national health information platform so patient records can
    be read by approved health professionals anywhere in the
    country.
  • $486 million to begin the transition to
    Health NZ and health reforms.
  • $46.7 million more for
    each of the next four years for primary care, to address
    cost and volume pressures, supporting programmes increasing
    access to health services for low-income New Zealanders,
    such as zero fees for under-14s and the Very Low-Cost Access
    clinics.

 

© Scoop Media

 

A summary of budget 2021 coverage on Scoop from a range of publishers and across sectors… More>>

In some realms of the centre-right, Budget 2021 has been portrayed as a “peak Labour” exercise in which the government has veered sharply leftwards in order to satisfy its political base. To the left though, it has seemed more like a wasted opportunity, a Budget that looks a lot like Barack Obama’ response to the Global Financial Crisis. … More>>



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