President's message, Ash Soni
There was much to celebrate across the Society in 2014; my first year as President of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society. Across all three countries we continued to raise the profile of pharmacists amongst government and stakeholders. I am delighted we are getting the message across that pharmacists play an integrated role across the whole healthcare system, providing better patient care and supporting people to stay well. In England we launched the first of five campaigns around Shaping Pharmacy for the Future, with a particular focus on how pharmacists can support urgent and emergency care. Work continued in RPS Scotland to support the delivery of Prescription for Excellence, a vision for pharmaceutical care. In Wales the RPS played strongly into the Welsh strategy for pharmacy with Your Care, Your Medicines: Pharmacy at the Heart of Patient-Centred Care. RPS is now performing as a Royal College in all but name and I am looking forward to more achievements in the year ahead.
From the Chief Executive, Helen Gordon
2014 saw a great deal of delivery from the RPS as we continue to invest in your professional body. Our digital output grew, particularly in Pharmaceutical Press, where we saw the launch of the new Pharmaceutical Journal and website. The RPS Faculty enjoyed an enhanced profile across the profession and we launched our Foundation programme, which is open to all our members as well as being especially relevant to those in their first 1,000 days of practice. I am pleased that our activity is also being recognised by pharmacists, with more of you choosing to join us. Thank you for continuing your membership of RPS in what was also our last full year based at Lambeth. I look forward to welcoming you to our new headquarters in East Smithfield, London, later this year.
What was our biggest achievement in 2014?
Our biggest achievements in 2014 have centred around our five Shaping Pharmacy for the Future campaigns, principally the first one that we launched in the autumn which highlighted the role that pharmacists can play in urgent and emergency care. We highlighted the efficiency of treating common ailments in community pharmacies close to patients’ homes, the potential to have pharmacists treating patients in A&E and the real need to ensure that community pharmacy is linked in as an option for response systems like NHS 111. We have been successful in advocating for these goals through the media, and with politicians and senior NHS England staff.
From the Scottish Pharmacy Board and Scottish Directorate’s perspective the biggest achievement in 2014 was the high level of partnership working that exists now between RPS and NHS Education Scotland (NES) across a number of areas. A perfect example of this was the launching of a joint RPS/NES education project to develop guidance describing how the existing NHS vocational training schemes and development opportunities, and the RPS Foundation and Faculty Frameworks may be utilised and adapted to support the professional development of all pharmacists, from pre-registration through advanced practitioner to consultant pharmacist level.
The Welsh Pharmacy Board worked in partnership with the Welsh Pharmaceutical Committee to develop a future vision for pharmacy in Wales. The vision document, Your Care, Your Medicines: Pharmacy at the Heart of Patient-Centred Care, was launched at the 4th Annual Medicines Safety Conference. All sectors of the profession contributed to the document, which has a foreword from the Welsh Chief Pharmaceutical Officer. Your Care, Your Medicines advocates new ways of working to improve patient care, including using pharmaceutical care plans and harnessing the skills of pharmacist independent prescribers. It presents a vision for the future direction of pharmacy for Wales.