Stephen Riley, National Pharmacy Board campaign letter

Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) membership covers all sectors and pharmacy students / preregistration pharmacist who are our future. However, when talking to non-members and members, many ask what the point of the RPS is.

There is confusion as to the role of a professional body. The RPS is not the regulator, negotiator or trade union. Historical lack of professional leadership has left a vacuum; we practise in legacy of no workforce planning, cohesive plan or approach for utilisation of pharmacy professionals.

We face threats and opportunities requiring a strong professional leadership body. The RPS has to be an “honest broker” bringing the pantheon of pharmacy organisations together and support us to safely / effectively deliver quality patient care. The RPS agenda has to be to support pharmacists and develop the profession with members’ interests at heart. The RPS has to also act as a “critical friend” to the regulator and Government policy makers, acting as the true voice for pharmacy.

A clear stance is required, led by our professional body. The RPS should work with Pharmacists’ Defence Association on issues such as conditions and work place pressures. We need collaboration with others challenging funding cuts and offering pragmatic alternative solutions.

We need practical support to develop leadership support for members to engage in emerging Local Care Organisations and new models of care; ensuring pharmacy is integrated as a partner. I am working to achieve this with locality commissioners in my NHS Englsnd role.

The RPS must act upon the views of all levels of our membership and offer practical support. Historically there were about 3 key sectors (community, hospital and academia / industry), we now have 20 plus recognised sectors and various specialisms. We must effectively engage with all members. A key element is to bolster local practice forums, invest in the network and support development of local leadership / pharmacy champions across all sectors. Also, support cross sector working so recognised by what we deliver and not where we deliver.

I will utilise relationships with various pharmacy organisations to develop collaborative work-streams and a clear cohesive voice for our profession led by the RPS. I will maximise use of communication channels to increase engagement with coal face membership and non-members. I will ensure locums are supported, not a forgotten workforce and fight to get voting rights for our student and pre-registration associate members in future elections.

Stephen Riley, England

This is a campaign pledge for the 2018 National Pharmacy Board elections.

Voting opens on 30 April 2018 and closes on 18 May 2018.

For more information, please visit:

Last updated
The Pharmaceutical Journal, Stephen Riley, National Pharmacy Board campaign letter;Online:DOI:10.1211/PJ.2018.20204737

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