RPS President Ash Soni has announced he will not seek re-election as President at the RPS Assembly on 18th July. He will remain as a member of the RPS Assembly and the English Pharmacy Board.
RPS Chief Executive Paul Bennett said:
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank Ash Soni for his considerable contribution in his role as RPS President over many years and in particular his personal hard work and dedication.
“Having worked with Ash during his recent Presidency I know this will not have been an easy decision for him to reach, but I respect his decision to not contest the forthcoming elections and in so doing give opportunity for other elected members sitting on the Assembly to take on this demanding role.
“I understand that Ash will also continue to work closely with NHS England as an LPN Chair and with the many other healthcare organisations that he works with and we look forward to seeing his continued contribution to the development of our profession.”
Ash was last elected President on18 July 2017 and has held the role on two previous occasions. He was awarded an OBE in 2014 for services to pharmacy and the NHS.
During his tenure he oversaw the relocation of RPS from its former Lambeth premises to a new building near Tower Bridge in East London, bringing substantial savings in running costs, helping to secure the long-term future of the Society for its members.
Ash played a major role in ensuring the 78th FIP Congress took place in Glasgow in 2018, the first time this landmark event had been held in the UK for nearly 40 years. It was attended by over 3000 pharmacists from over 100 countries. Ash was elected a Vice-President of FIP at the conference in 2018.
Ash was a member of the Rebalancing Medicines Legislation and Pharmacy Regulation Programme Board and last year measures were introduced to provide a criminal defence around inadvertent dispensing errors in registered pharmacies after many years of dialogue with government and the NHS. He has also continued to press for similar measures to be put in place outside of registered pharmacies, to ensure equity for all pharmacists and create a defence for pharmacists working in hospitals and other settings.
RPS President Ash Soni said:
“From my personal perspective it’s the right time for me to focus on other areas where I will have the time to support the further development of pharmacy and pharmacists.
“These include Stepcare, an initiative in India where I am involved in building two new primary care centres from the ground up. I will also be expanding my role at NHS England around system leadership, and my role within the National Association of Primary Care, integrating pharmacy into Primary Care Home, the leading primary care network.”