NEARLY 200 Lloyds Pharmacy stores could close, it has been announced today.
Celesio UK, which runs Lloyds Pharmacy, announced its intention to stop trading in approximately 190 of its shops in England.
They said the action is a result of recent Department of Health and NHS England cuts.
Lloyds Pharmacy has a number of branches across Portsmouth and the surrounding areas.
Cormac Tobin, managing director of Celesio UK, said: ‘Changes to government policy on reimbursement and retrospective clawbacks over the past two years have gradually made operations at many Lloyds Pharmacy stores commercially unviable.
‘We will be doing all that we can to support our affected colleagues and minimise disruption for patients.
‘As a company we pride ourselves on putting the customer first by constantly finding new ways to evolve in order to achieve excellence in quality, safety and efficiency for the NHS.
‘We look forward to working with the department of health and NHS England in the future to ensure that we can shape a new framework which allows us to invest, innovate and continually improve our service to patients.’
Celesio UK will look to support a smooth transition to new contractors, where appropriate, and to ensure an uninterrupted service for its customers.
As part of the process of identifying pharmacies for closure, the business looked at other community pharmacy provision in the area, with a view to mitigating the impact on patients as much as possible.
The stores which could be closing have not been announced.
Mr Tobin added: ‘Although this is a difficult day for some of our colleagues, this also presents an opportunity for us to set ourselves up for the future and build our reputation as a trusted partner of the NHS.’