Changes to Prescription Cost Analysis (PCA) monthly administrative data
In December 2020, we held a public consultation on changing the methodology used in the PCA annual national statistics and expanding their content.
Following this consultation, we've changed the underlying methodology used to compile the annual national statistics as well as the PCA monthly administrative data to reflect this.
From April 2021 dispensing data, no further monthly PCA data will be published in the legacy format. The data will also no longer be published on our website but will be available on our Open Data Portal (ODP).
January, February and March 2021 data is being re-run in the new format and will be available in the ODP at the same time as April 2021 dispensing data and monthly thereafter.
PCA data shows national prescription data dispensed in the community in England at presentation level.
Changes to PCA data from December 2018
We now store and report data via a new data warehouse. This lets us provide more accurate data.
Data will differ in some respects to the data reported before this date.
View the Prescription Cost Analysis England 2018 report (PDF: 325KB) for more information about changes to PCA data.
Prescription Cost Analysis data from January 2020 is now published in the new format in line with ePACT2.
View the One Drug Database (ODD) article for more information.
Annual PCA National Statistics
The annual PCA national statistics publication that was previously released by NHS Digital is now produced by us.
The annual PCA publication is a national statistic release. National statistics status means that PCA meets the highest standards of trustworthiness, quality, public value, and complies with all aspects of the Code of Practice for Statistics.
There's a small difference between the annual PCA release and the monthly administrative data. This means that they may not match exactly. In the annual PCA national statistics, the classification of a drug is taken from the latest month in the data, and all data attributed to that classification even if it has changed throughout the year. The monthly PCA data uses the classification of the drug as it was in the month the data relates to.
For example, if a drug changed classification in July of the given year to an appliance, in the annual PCA national statistics all data would be shown against the record that has been classified as an appliance. In the monthly PCA data, the drug would be shown as a drug in the months up to July, and then would be displayed as an appliance in the July data onwards.
This would also apply if a drug changed classification from being a generic drug with only proprietary versions available (class 2) to a generic drug with generic versions available (class 1). In the annual PCA national statistics, all data for the year would be shown against the class 1 record. In the monthly PCA data, it would be shown against the class 2 record up until the month that the drug changed classification.
|PCA data January 2021 (Excel: 1.9MB)||PCA data February 2021 (Excel:2.0MB)||PCA data March 2021 (Excel:2.0MB)|
|PCA data January 2019 (Excel: 2.4MB)||PCA data February 2019 (Excel: 2.3MB)||PCA data March 2019 (Excel: 2.4MB)|
|PCA data April 2019 (Excel: 2.3MB)||PCA data May 2019 (Excel: 2.3MB)||PCA data June 2019 (Excel 2.3MB)|
|PCA data July 2019 (Excel:2.3MB)|
Data from previous years