To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland on what basis he calculated the dispensing fee of(a) 89p per item and (b) 60p per item for second and subsequent dispensings for patients considered to be at risk for community pharmacy contractors; what research he (i) commissioned and (ii) evaluated into the adequacy of this level of remuneration; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Mr. Galbraith
Community pharmacy remuneration is based on a global sum for spending on pharmaceutical services. In order to deliver the overall global sum to pharmacists a statistical model is used which takes into account both historical data and predicted growth in prescription volume. The community pharmacists'366W professional allowance and the fee scale for specific items have been set in accordance with the model to deliver a global sum in 1997–98 of £72.6 million; an increase of 2.4 per cent. on the previous year.