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RPS pledges ‘direct involvement’ in resumed pharmacy supervision talks

The RPS has pledged to be “directly involved” in any discussions around proposed changes to pharmacy supervision, as sector bodies resume talks.

The Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) will “speak for our members and the public who depend on pharmacy services”, it has said in response the news that the Association of Independent Multiple Pharmacies (AIMp), the Company Chemists’ Association (CCA) and the National Pharmacy Association (NPA) have formed a cross-sector group to “refresh” some aspects of pharmacy supervision.

“[The] RPS is clear that access to a pharmacist to provide the clinical assessment and assurance for safety of medicines in community pharmacies is absolutely vital, and that pharmacies cannot run without a pharmacist,” president Sandra Gidley told C+D yesterday (May 6).

“Pharmacists must be at the centre of all pharmaceutical services recognising their unique role in helping to keep the public safe.”

In a joint statement on Wednesday (May 5), AIMp, the CCA and the NPA stressed that discussions will not focus on remote supervision, and the aim is for “the pharmacist presence in the pharmacy to become more, not less, visible to patients”.

Ms Gidley added: “Patients must continue to benefit from direct access to advice from a pharmacist.

“The increasing clinical role and service provision we are seeing from community pharmacies must continue to grow at pace, including enabling patients to have better access to pharmacist independent prescribers within their communities.”

In 2018, the RPS had to clarify its position on remote supervision following backlash from pharmacists on Twitter. Former president Ash Soni said at the time that the RPS believes “every pharmacy should have a responsible pharmacist”, who should be allowed to supervise more than one pharmacy “only in emergencies”.

Do you agree that some aspects of pharmacy supervision need updating?

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