Table 1

Summary of the main characteristics of the PCHC and community pharmacies in Spain
Primary care health centers Community pharmacies
Owner Predominantly state-owned Privately owned (the pharmacy owner must be a licensed pharmacist and each pharmacy may own only one pharmacy)
Every PCHC contains several GP surgeries with few exceptions in rural areas of Spain
Funding Publicly funded Offers both publicly funded services (i.e. drugs that are financed by the state) and privately funded services (i.e. over the counter drugs)
A large part of the profit derives from selling financed drugs.
Management Predominantly publicly run (the manager is one of the GPs from the PCHC team that combines clinical activities with management activities) Privately run (usually by the owner)
In some regions, privately managed PCHCs exist. This is the case with the "Entitades de Base Asociativa" (EBAs). EBAs are limited companies comprised of health professionals that establish a contractual relationship with the NHS to offer health services in exchange for capitation financing, a theoretical cost per person independent of the real costs incurred.
Compensation Most GPs are employed by the public sector and receive fixed salaries. CPs are owners of the community pharmacy or employed in exchange of a fixed salary.
Management by Objectives (MBO) has been introduced to improve quality of the service and reduce cost. For instance, GPs are paid a bonus if they prescribe a high percentage of generic drugs and/or those of proven efficacy.

Rubio-Valera et al.

Rubio-Valera et al. BMC Health Services Research 2012 12:188   doi:10.1186/1472-6963-12-188

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