Explore the latest MEP

The 38th edition of ‘Medicines, Ethics and Practice’ was distributed to RPS members in July. Rakhee Amin, on behalf of the RPS Support team, explains what is new in the resource.

Cover of the 'Medicines, Ethics and Practice’ (MEP), the professional guide for pharmacists

‘Medicines, Ethics and Practice — The professional guide for pharmacists’ (MEP) supports decision-making in day-to-day practice. Over the years, the RPS support team has continued to improve and refine the guide. The latest edition, MEP 38, has been written by the RPS support team, guided by feedback received from members and an advisory panel. The MEP 38 Advisory Panel included 22 pharmacists from different backgrounds and sectors who volunteered their time and expertise to help with the development of the guide.

What’s new in MEP 38

We have introduced the following new topics in MEP 38:

  • Guidance on the principles of medicines optimisation (England) and pharmaceutical care (Scotland);
  • Information on RPS resources that can help pharmacists with their professional development, including CPD, RPS Faculty, RPS Foundation Pharmacy Framework, leadership development and mentoring;
  • Guidance on research involvement, outlining the importance of pharmacists understanding the ethical implications of research, requirements for research and how these impact on their working practices;
  • Signposting to detailed information on existing electronic prescriptions systems;
  • Guidance on dispensing a prescription presented to a pharmacist in Welsh language (including labelling);
  • Guidance for pharmacists on administering adrenaline in an emergency.

In this edition, we have also made a number of updates, amendments and improvements to existing topics in response to changes in legislation, standards, and member and advisory panel feedback.

In line with changes in August 2013, we have revised information on appropriate independent prescribing practitioners to include qualified podiatrists and physiotherapists. Both EEA and Swiss prescription requirements have also been updated to reflect legislative changes in March 2014.

We welcome and value any feedback to help us improve future editions of MEP

There is updated guidance on dealing with controlled drugs (CDs). We have produced a brief outline of the CD changes for tramadol, lisdexamfetamine, zopiclone and zaleplon and also direct readers to comprehensive guidance available on the RPS website. Information on extemporaneous dispensing of methadone has been revised in line with publication of the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) ’Guidance for registered pharmacies preparing unlicensed medicines’. MEP 38 also includes an update on running balance checks for CDs that have been at zero balance for some time.

The section on RPS professional standards includes information on new public health and homecare services standards, as well as the recent update to the hospital pharmacy standards.

With the permission of the GPhC, we have continued to include GPhC standards and guidance within the appendices.

How to get involved

We welcome and value any feedback to help us improve future editions of MEP and are keen to hear from volunteers who would like to help develop the guide. Contact the RPS Support team at support@rpharms.com for further information on how to participate and what is involved.


One free print copy of MEP 38 was distributed in July with The Pharmaceutical Journal to each member, Fellow, associate pharmaceutical scientist member and associate pre-registration trainee due to qualify in 2015. All members, including student members, benefit from free online access to the electronic version of MEP 38 on the RPS website at www.rpharms.com.

Print copies of MEP 38 are available for general purchase at the full price of £49.99. Members wishing to purchase additional print copies can do so for £19.99 including postage and package (order online and enter membership number at checkout). Student members are eligible to purchase a subsidised print version for £14.99. Student members will receive a promotional code in the August edition of their electronic newsletter Get Involved. This code should be entered at checkout.

For more information and to purchase copies of MEP 38, visit the Pharmaceutical Press website at www.pharmpress.com.

Last updated
The Pharmaceutical Journal, PJ, 9/16 August 2014, Vol 293, No 7822/3;293(7822/3):DOI:10.1211/PJ.2014.20066000

You may also be interested in