Chemist + Druggist is part of Pharma Intelligence UK Limited

This is operated by Pharma Intelligence UK Limited, a company registered in England and Wales with company number 13787459 whose registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. The Pharma Intelligence group is owned by Caerus Topco S.à r.l. and all copyright resides with the group.


This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use. Please do not redistribute without permission.

Printed By

UsernamePublicRestriction

Labour will hold government to account for pharmacy supervision plans

A Labour MP has branded plans to amend pharmacy supervision legislation as a “massive attack” on community pharmacy and vowed her party will fight them.

C+D revealed earlier this month that detailed proposals for pharmacy technicians to be handed legal responsibility for supervising the supply of prescription-only medicines have been submitted to a Department of Health programme board.

Julie Cooper, MP for Burnley and Padiham, said she “will oppose [the proposals] all the way”.

“[Labour] will hold the government to account on this,” Ms Cooper told C+D in an exclusive interview at her party's conference in Brighton on Monday (September 25).

“It's absolutely outrageous – a massive attack on community pharmacists as a profession, but most importantly it affects patient safety,” Ms Cooper said.

“We’re on a very dangerous trajectory,” added Ms Cooper, who used to own and run a community pharmacy with her pharmacist husband.

Pharmacy "on the cheap"

“Pharmacists are the experts when it comes to medication and therapeutic doses and sometimes, not that infrequently, prescriptions are written that aren't safe,” Ms Cooper said. “A dispensing technician doesn't have the expertise.”

Pharmacy technicians do a “fantastic job”, but they are “not the same” as a pharmacist, Ms Cooper stressed.

The Conservative government seems “intent on sticking the boot in”, she said. “They're looking at pharmacy on the cheap.”

Labour stance on pharmacy

“Labour will take community pharmacists seriously, we accord them the respect they deserve,” Ms Cooper said.

The party's last general election manifesto included a pledge to halt pharmacy closures and empower local authorities to protect pharmacies – inclusions Ms Cooper said she had requested.

"We're very serious about working with community pharmacies to develop their increased role," she said. "Labour MPs have in great numbers talked about community pharmacy."

Speaking at a National Pharmacy Association-organised event at the conference, Ms Cooper predicted there will be more funding cuts in store, as pharmacy is an “easy target” and there is a “genuine ignorance in government” about the sector.

“[Some Conservative MPs] seem to be in denial [of] the cause and effect. It is criminal what’s happening.”

“Stand up now”

However, there are MPs “across the house” who value community pharmacy, she said.

Ms Cooper has spoken to Conservative MPs “conflicted” between the “needs of their constituents” and their party’s position, she told C+D.

Ms Cooper said she has told Conservative MPs privately and publicly about the effect of the funding cuts, advising them that “if you don't approve, it's now the time to stand up and say”.

Have you contacted your MP about the funding cuts or supervision proposals?

Related Content

Topics

         
Pharmacist
Oxford
£32 per hour

Apply Now
Latest News & Analysis
See All
UsernamePublicRestriction

Register

CD008970

Ask The Analyst

Please Note: You can also Click below Link for Ask the Analyst
Ask The Analyst

Thank you for submitting your question. We will respond to you within 2 business days. my@email.address.

All fields are required.

Please make sure all fields are completed.

Please make sure you have filled out all fields

Please make sure you have filled out all fields

Please enter a valid e-mail address

Please enter a valid Phone Number

Ask your question to our analysts

Cancel