The Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) reached its 175th anniversary on 15 April 2016. At an event to celebrate the milestone, Ash Soni, president of the RPS, announced that, with member support, the RPS will now work towards being named a Royal College. “After five years in our new guise as a professional leadership body it is an ideal time to take stock of our purpose, who we are and what we do and set out our strategic goals for the next five years,” he said.
The anniversary was celebrated across Great Britain on 14 April 2016, with events at each of the RPS’s headquarters in London, Edinburgh and Cardiff. The event also marked the formal opening of the RPS’s new London building at 66–68 East Smithfield by speaker of Tower Hamlets, councillor Abdul Mukit MBE.
Source: MAG / The Pharmaceutical Journal
In his speech, which was streamed live from London to the events in Scotland and Wales, Soni set out the RPS’s six strategic goals for the next five years as part of the RPS’s journey towards Royal College status.
These goals are: to improve the public’s health and well-being; to be the professional voice of pharmacy; to support the education and development of the profession; to be a globally renowned publisher of medicines information; to drive and support research in medicines and care; and to be a viable and sustainable organisation.
“These goals remain true to our Royal Charter and the ambitions of the founders of this great organisation,” Soni said. “We welcome the feedback of all our members and we look forward to working with you all to meet our purpose of leading the profession to improve the public’s health and well-being.”
Soni referred to the launch of the ‘I Love My Pharmacist Award’ on 18 April 2016, highlighting that this year is the first to allow people to nominate their favourite pharmacist. “We hope once again that large numbers of the public will vote, demonstrating how much they value their pharmacist,” he said. He also recognised the work of the charity Pharmacist Support by choosing them as his ‘President’s Charity’ for 2016, as they too celebrate their 175th anniversary this year. Pharmacist Support began its journey as an occupational benevolent fund in 1841 when the Pharmaceutical Society was first founded.
“Whilst much has changed in society, healthcare and pharmacy over those 175 years, I do believe our founding members, starting from Jacob Bell, would be proud to see that we retain the same ethos as those laid out in forming the original Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain,” he said.