Under the Health and Social Care Act 2012 Health and Wellbeing Boards (HWBs) are now responsible for developing a regular Pharmaceutical Needs Assessment (PNA) for their area. Previously, NHS Primary Care Trusts carried out these routine assessments which act as a guide for people wishing to open new pharmacies or dispensaries in Cumbria, or if existing pharmacies wish to expand.

The main aim of the PNA is to assess if current pharmacy services are meeting the needs of the people of Cumbria.  A PNA describes community pharmacy services currently being provided in a specific area, identifying where and when these are available; and it assesses current and future health needs of the local population.

Draft Pharmaceutical Needs Assessment 2022 for Consultation

The Cumbria Health and Wellbeing Board (HWB) has produced a draft local Pharmaceutical Needs Assessment (PNA) outlining services which will help to ensure residents have good access to local pharmacy services.  This is a statutory HWB responsibility as set out under the NHS (Pharmaceutical and Local Pharmaceutical Services Regulations) 2013 (SI 2013 No. 349).  The last PNA was published in 2018 and while there is a requirement to update the PNA every 3 years this is delayed to 1st October 2022 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

A consultation report will be included within the final PNA document.   The final PNA will be published by 1st October 2022.

Pharmaceutical Needs Assessment 2018

Cumbria’s HWB last updated and published a PNA in April 2018. This PNA is available via the following links:

Pharmaceutical services map

In accordance with Regulation 4(2) Cumbria HWB have produced a map that identifies the premises at which pharmaceutical services are provided within the area of the HWB. This map will be kept up-to-date, in so far as is practicable, without needing to republish the whole PNA document or publish a supplementary statement. This map is available via the following link:


Essentially, the PNA assesses the local health needs in the area and helps to identify the need for pharmacy services.  The PNA supports the HWB and partners to target services; it will be used by NHS England when assessing new pharmacy applications and will inform services commissioned in both North and South Cumbria (by North Cumbria Clinical Commissioning Group and Morecambe Bay Clinical Commissioning Group).

The following information is considered by the PNA:

  • The demography of Cumbria;

  • Whether there is sufficient choice with regard to obtaining pharmaceutical services;

  • The different needs of the different districts in Cumbria;

  • The pharmaceutical services provided in neighbouring HWB areas which affect the need for pharmaceutical services in Cumbria;

  • Whether further provision of pharmaceutical services in Cumbria would secure improvements or better access to pharmaceutical services of a specified type in Cumbria;

  • Other NHS services provided in or outside Cumbria (not covered above) which affect the need for pharmaceutical services in Cumbria;

  • Likely future needs;

  • Cumbria’s Joint Strategic Needs Assessment (JSNA)