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Pharmacy Bulletin

Welcome to the latest edition of the Pharmacy bulletin, which includes updates on:
How do I opt in or out of receiving the monthly hard copy drug tariff?
Top tips for completing Market Entry applications
Submitting enquiries to the Market Entry team
New online form to replace paper applications for Market Entry
How do I opt in or out of receiving the monthly hard copy drug tariff?

In line with NHS England’s sustainable development strategy and commitment to make services available online where possible, we are encouraging pharmacies to make use of the online version of the Drug Tariff.

The online Drug Tariff is available to view on the NHS Business Services Authority website (see link above), providing timely access to the very latest information. The latest version is available three working days prior to the start of each month. You can also view any updates that have been made to the published version online.

All pharmacies were given the option to opt in to continue to receive the hard copy drug tariff in December 2018. Any pharmacies that did not inform PCSE of their wish to opt in will not receive a monthly hard copy.

Pharmacies can opt in or out of receiving the monthly hard copy of the drug tariff at any time. Please email dtbsurvey@nhs.net with the following information:
- Your name
- Your business name and address
- Your business opening hours
- ODS/Practice code  (if you do not know this please contact the Exeter Helpdesk on 0300 3034 034 or email: exeter.helpdesk@nhs.net)

Please state whether you are opting in or out.

If you are opting in please include information on any days you are not open and alternative delivery instructions for those days.

To receive a hard copy of the drug tariff next month, please inform us that you wish to opt in by the 15th day of the month.

Top tips for completing Market Entry applications
PCSE is responsible for processing Market Entry applications on behalf of NHS England.  To help applicants accurately complete the forms, we have put together some useful tips.  These are based on omissions or errors that are commonly made on applications we receive*.

  • Please do not leave any sections blank. If there is a section that is not applicable to you or your application, please state this on the form.   PCSE will return incomplete forms, where fields are left blank or information is missing, with a request to add the relevant information or mark n/a. 


  • Ensure the correct Health and Wellbeing Board (HWB) is named in the relevant section of your application form.  You should select the HWB for the area where you are applying for the pharmacy premises to be.  General  information about HWBs is available from the King’s Fund who have a HWB directory which might help you find out your local HWB.


  • Clearly state the applicants name in section 1.1.  For example - if you are applying as a body corporate, add the name of the body corporate in this section as well as the correspondence address.  


  • If you are applying for a change of ownership, please include the current pharmacy trading name and full address in section 2 of the application form.


  • Check that you have included the correct ‘Core’ and ‘Supplementary’ opening hours.

*PCSE Market Entry is precluded from offering detailed guidance on how to complete an application but these tips have been provided to help applicants avoid common mistakes.
Submitting enquiries to the Market Entry team
Enquiries and queries should be emailed to the Market Entry team, with the case (CAS) reference number clearly displayed within the email subject header.  The CAS number ensures all correspondence relating to a specific application can be easily identified and attached to the correct file.
If you have not been provided with a CAS number, please enter relevant reference information in the email subject header. For example this could include:

  • Name of applicant
  • Proposed pharmacy address & postcode
  • Name of body corporate
  • Registered office address & postcode

The email address for PCSE’s Market Entry team is:  PCSE.marketentry@nhs.net

New online form to replace paper applications for Market Entry

Later this year, the new approach for pharmacy applications will see the replacement of multiple paper forms with one single online application, accessible via PCSE Online.

The newly developed online form to replace the 30+ paper forms that currently exist for Market Entry applications is now being tested. It will include not only Market Entry and Change of Ownership, but also Market Exit and Consolidations, and Opening Hours Changes.

The new system will provide a straightforward online application process that is automatically checked for completeness before applications are submitted. 

Some of the benefits of the online form include:

  • Applicant will be guided to complete only the fields that are relevant to their application and organisation type. They will be able to save a draft and upload relevant files such as floorplans and maps with their applications
  • Real time validation to prevent incorrect information being submitted 
  • More ‘right first time’ applications
  • Acknowledgement email and reference to confirm an application has been received 
  • Facility to download pdfs of applications
  • Option to view and track the status of open applications on PCSE Online
  • NHS England will be able to access and update the application status directly

Following internal testing by PCSE (with some NHSE participation), the new system will then be subject to User Acceptance Testing with NHS England and other stakeholders, before a trial period for ‘early adopters’ is followed by the national roll-out expected later this year.