Standards & Practice


This page contains information on Governance, Reporting Requirements and the Quality Payment Scheme. Click on an item in the list below for more information on each topic

The Accessible Information Standard

From 1 April 2016, pharmacy teams should, as a matter of normal routine practice, ask patients about any accessible information and / or communication needs they may have and ensure that information is recorded on their notes.

Where you can act on this information right away by making simple adjustments you should do so, but you are not legally required to take any action under the Standard until 31 July 2016. However, you must continue to meet the existing requirements of the Equality Act 2010 – a separate legal obligation – by making reasonable adjustments to support persons with a disability to access your services.  More details can be found here

Annual Complaints Report

Each pharmacy contractor must prepare an annual report for each year, ending 31 March, which must:

  • specify the number of complaints which the pharmacy contractor received
  • specify the number of complaints which the pharmacy contractor decided were well-founded
  • specify the number of complaints which the pharmacy contractor has been informed have been referred to the Health Service Commissioner to consider under the 1993 Act
  • summarise:
    • the subject matter of complaints that the pharmacy contractor received
    • any matters of general importance arising out of those complaints, or the way in which the complaints were handled
    • any matters where action has been or is to be taken to improve services as a consequence of those complaints.

The annual report must be available to any person on request.

The pharmacy contractor must also send a copy of its annual report to the local NHS Team as soon as reasonably practicable after the end of the year to which the report relates.


Send to:

To assist pharmacies, PSNC has prepared a template summary of complaints, which can be used as an index of complaints as they are received and closed. All the information necessary to produce the annual report can then be collated from this summary at the end of each year.

Summary of complaints (MS Word) Summary of complaints (PDF)

Local NHS Teams may ask pharmacies to produce evidence during monitoring visits, that they are complying with the complaints regulations.  Producing the summary of complaints, with collated copies of the complaints regulations will provide evidence, but the detail on these forms contains sensitive personal information about the complainant so should not be disclosed unless the complainant has consented.  If the local NHS Team has decided to investigate a complaint made to it, then disclosure of the information in the pharmacy’s complaint record may be appropriate.

Community Pharmacy Assurance Framework (CPAF)

Contract Monitoring

NHS England’s local offices have responsibility for monitoring the provision of Essential and Advanced services. Arrangements for monitoring locally commissioned services may be set out in local contracts or Service Level Agreements. NHS England’s local offices use the Community Pharmacy Assurance Framework (CPAF) to monitor pharmacy contractors’ compliance with the terms of the community pharmacy contractual framework (CPCF).

For more information on CPAF, click here

Information Governance

Providers of NHS services within England, including community pharmacy contractors, are required to give information governance assurances to the NHS each year via an online self-assessment – the Data Security and Protection Toolkit (previously called the ‘IG toolkit’).

Data Security and Protection Toolkit : CPE Main site

NHS Fraud Checking Notification

From 1 July 2016 pharmacy contractors will be required by their terms of service, before supplying the drug or appliance, to advise the person claiming exemption from payment of NHS prescription charges – where evidence is required but not provided – that NHS checks are routinely undertaken to verify that such persons are exempt from payment of NHS prescription charges, as part of arrangements for preventing or detecting fraud or error.

CPE have produced a briefing to support community pharmacy teams about this change and how to make these questions routine. It can be found here

Opening Hours

Pharmacy opening hours 2021 : CPE-Briefing-028.20-Pharmacy-opening-hours-in-2021.pdf

Pharmacies are permitted to close on most public and bank holidays, but there are some exceptions.

CPE’s annual opening hours factsheet provides contractors with a quick reference guide on which public and bank holidays pharmacies can close without giving notice. Download the factsheet here

Pharmacy Quality Scheme

The Pharmacy Quality Scheme (PQS)  is the new name for the Quality Payments Scheme, which forms part of the Community Pharmacy Contractual Framework (CPCF).

In July 2019, a new PQS was announced for the remainder of 2019/20 as part of the five-year deal for the CPCF. The new scheme has funding of £75 million and a review point in February 2020.

Pharmacy Quality Scheme (PQS) criteria

Click here for PQS Criteria: Pharmacy Quality Scheme


Reporting Requirements

100 hour monitoring forms

Post to the address at the bottom of this section or email to:

Community Pharmacy Patient Questionnaire (CPPQ)

All pharmacies are required to conduct an annual community pharmacy patient questionnaire (formerly referred to as the Patient Satisfaction Questionnaire). The questionnaire allows patients to provide valuable feedback to community pharmacies on the services they provide.

Full details including the questionnaire and FAQs can be found on PSNC website: click here

The results must be published via one or more of the following options:

  • in the pharmacy, as a leaflet or poster;
  • on the pharmacy’s website;
  • on the pharmacy’s NHS Choices profile (if and when this functionality is available).

Complaints report

Pharmacy contractors must also send a copy of its annual report to the local NHS Team as soon as reasonably practicable after the end of the year to which the report relates.

Send to:

Information Governance

IG documentation needs to be completed annually by 31st March each year. See IG section above.

NMS quarterly reporting:

Click here for details on how to submit quarterly reports

Specials (COA and COC)  – must be posted to:

FAO Pharmacy Team Primary Care Commissioning Support NHS England, Area Team (Lancashire) Room 230, 2nd Floor Preston Business Centre Watling Street Road PR2 8DY