RPS Wales welcomes critical investment in transforming access to medicines

We are delighted that today the Welsh Government has announced a £67 million investment to transform pharmacy services in Wales. This is a welcome recognition of pharmacy as an essential and innovative service within NHS Wales.

The five-year Transforming Access to Medicines programme will not only focus on the technical pharmacy services itself, but will also be an investment in people, providing the opportunity for professional leadership and innovation in pharmaceutical treatments.

The funding will also create opportunities for further research, encouraging greater collaborations between the NHS and universities supporting clinical trials. These important plans which will transform how some of the most innovative and life-saving medicines including cancer therapies, intravenous antibiotics and parenteral nutrition, are prepared will ultimately benefit the people of Wales. They will shift care that would normally be received in hospital, closer to people’s homes.

The move is a huge step in reaching the goals set out in the ten-year vision document, Pharmacy: Delivering a healthier Wales. The ten-year vision up to 2030 set out a roadmap for ensuring closer collaboration between pharmacy services in hospital, community and primary care to ensure patients benefit from locally provided services. Shifting the focus of hospital teams to respond to changes in the delivery of care and transform access to medicines has been a key part of this vision for pharmaceutical care in Wales.

We look forward to supporting and working with colleagues across the NHS and the Welsh Government in the rollout and delivery of this new and exciting programme.

Commenting on today’s announcement, Suzanne Scott-Thomas, Chair of the RPS Welsh Pharmacy board said:

“We are delighted that the Welsh Government has agreed to prioritise plans to transform the preparation and delivery of medicines for the people of Wales. The investment in pharmacy will help us realise key parts of the vision for pharmacy that was created by the profession.

The announcement today will help sustain and improve pharmaceutical care for patients throughout Wales. It is a testament to the leadership and commitment of the Chief Pharmacists across Wales and the Chief Pharmaceutical Officer in imagining and committing to this transformation. We must also thank all members of the pharmacy team in Wales and other key supporters who have been instrumental in bringing these important advances in pharmaceutical care closer to reality.”