The English Pharmacy Board (EPB) met four times during 2012. Successful elections were held for all board positions this year. With over half of the newly elected EPB being new members a thorough induction was held on the day before the first official meeting in June.
The EPB was successfully represented at the three main political party conferences, leading fringe sessions and speaking on platforms with front bench politicians. This work at party conferences is the cornerstone of public affairs activity that goes on throughout the year involving meeting with politicians and their advisers, think tanks and speaking at Parliamentary meetings.
Another important piece of advocacy work occurred at the September RPS Conference where the NHS England Chief Executive, Sir David Nicholson, was to give a keynote address. Ahead of this the EPB Chair Shilpa Gohil, and Vice-Chair Ash Soni, along with the President, Chief Executive and Director for England held a breakfast meeting with Sir David.
At the meeting we pushed for the extended role of pharmacists in the new medicines optimisation agenda and the need for senior pharmacist appointments within the new NHS structures.
The EPB has been supporting members to get involved with new NHS organisations through the website as well as Local Practice Forum (LPF) meetings, a virtual health care reform hub and direct information about the Local Education and Training Boards (LETBs), Local Professional Networks (LPNs) and Health and Wellbeing Boards (H&WBs).
In 2012, the Scottish Pharmacy Board (SPB) held four formal meetings and a number of informal strategy days.
The SPB responded to the Scottish Government's Health and Social Care Integration consultation to highlight and strengthen pharmacy's positioning.
The SPB influenced the Review of Pharmaceutical Care in the Community (Wilson Review) through consultation responses and active engagement in a series of stakeholder meetings.
We launched our "Improving the pharmaceutical care of people in care homes" report to the Scottish Parliament and the NHS and developed a joint action plan with the RCGP, initially focusing on self-care and improving the care of older people. A dementia expert working group in partnership with Alzheimer Scotland will carry some of this work forward in 2013.
The LPFs held a series of successful events and we strengthened our stakeholder engagement and partnership working with patient groups, health charities, academia and National Education for Scotland.
We fought pharmacy's corner in Parliament on medicines waste and methadone supervision issues and campaigned for pharmacists' access and input into an integrated electronic patient record.
The SPB is committed to advancing the profession of pharmacy in Scotland for public and patient benefit to secure the future of our members.
The Welsh Pharmacy Board held four meetings in 2012 and two strategy days.
Promoting the interests of the profession at strategic policy levels was a key aim. Responding to our evidence, the Welsh Government Health and Social Care Committee's inquiry into community pharmacy recognised that community pharmacy can do more to shape future health services. Its recommendations for the development of community pharmacy were supported in full by the Welsh Government.
Another key aim of the board was to support members in addressing patient safety and our November conference focused on the need for more evidence of pharmacy's impact on medicines safety.
The LPF network in Wales held events on GPhC standards for pharmacy premises and the "Quality improvement guide -pharmacy edition", and a leadership event for steering groups.
We supported the delivery of public health campaigns and continued to support the Wales Professional Leadership course with Wales Centre for Pharmacy Professional Education and the National Leadership and Innovation Agency for Healthcare.
The board published PharmaCymru, its biannual newsletter, a bulletin, PharmacE, for politicians in Wales, a new digest of Welsh political news for members and a monthly column in the Western Mail. We provided expert comment on medicines for BBC Wales TV, radio and online and local media.