Following an article in The Guardian about Boots, RPS English Board Chair Sandra Gidley said:
"Reports in the Guardian regarding Boots will make difficult reading for many in the sector.
"We can state unequivocally that the vast majority of pharmacists are doing everything they can to provide great patient care and are using precious NHS resources as effectively as possible.
"The Medicines Use Review and New Medicines Service are important NHS services that can make a real difference to medicines use and patient outcomes. We are very disappointed to hear these reports of substantial commercial pressures which directly contradict both regulatory and professional standards. RPS believes that as health professionals, individual pharmacists must have professional autonomy when providing patient care wherever they are working.
"The Guardian article raises important questions about staffing levels in community pharmacy. The reports of unacceptable pressures that pharmacists are working in have been raised with us by individual members, in various settings and there is an urgent need to address the issue of target setting and unacceptable commercial pressures within large company settings.
"In an era of openess and transparency it would be good for pharmacists, the NHS and the public to be aware of staffing levels in community pharmacies. We would encourage all employers to consider how this could happen."