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Play politics to prosper

Pharmacists must get more political to preserve the future of the profession, a Royal Pharmaceutical Society Council member has claimed.

Graham Phillips, chair of the RPSGB's education committee, urged colleagues to "shout louder" about themselves at a conference of primary care tsars in London this week.

Mr Phillips said: "We need to not just be involved with the clinical agenda, we need to get involved in the political agenda. Look at when the nurses gave a barracking to the previous health secretary - that almost ended her political career. We need to learn to shout louder."

Mr Phillips also called for greater involvement in practice-based commissioning and accused GPs of trying to "lock pharmacy out of PBC".

Mr Phillips told the Primary Care Live conference at ExCel in London: "If you take PBC and look at all the stuff going on in the NHS, there's an opportunity for pharmacists to do ground-breaking work. Locking pharmacy out of PBC is GP self- interest but if we work with them we can take some of the workload and free them to do other things."

In his presentation he described the Society's vision for pharmacy as "medicine focused, patient centred, community spirited".

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