This morning the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care Matt Hancock MP announced that pharmacists in England would now be included in the government’s new death in service benefit for healthcare workers who die of coronavirus.
Responding to the announcement, RPS President Sandra Gidley said:
“We would like to thank the government for listening to concerns raised by the Royal Pharmaceutical Society and the profession about including pharmacists in the death in service benefit scheme. We look forward to receiving similar assurances from the Scottish Government and have already received them from the Welsh Government.
“We very much hope this offer extends to pharmacy teams, as well as all pharmacists who support the public on the frontline. We will be seeking clarification about this with government officials, along with other detail about how the scheme will work in practice. As the professional body, the RPS wants to be involved in any further conversation taking place on this. We will be it raising with the Pharmacy Minister Jo Churchill at our regular weekly meeting with her.
Chair of the RPS in England Professor Claire Anderson said: “Pharmacists are risking their lives every day through face-to-face contact with the public. We must make sure our frontline teams are fully protected with PPE and considered part of the NHS family. We should never have had to have this battle, which has demoralised many in our profession. In future, we expect the nation’s third largest health profession to be included in key government announcements on policy affecting our NHS colleagues.”