Press Release

The future of pharmacy: transformation and growth

Our views on the future of pharmacy

After extensive discussions with members, patient groups and others, we’re setting out our views on the future of pharmacy.

We’ve captured important learnings from the pandemic response and explored the varied contributions the pharmacy profession can make to the NHS.

We want to ensure the innovative practice, collaborative approaches and positive changes that happened during Covid-19 are not lost. We aim to develop them to improve patient care and the use of pharmacists’ expertise while further integrating pharmacy into the NHS.

The future of pharmacy in a sustainable NHS maps out key recommendations under three main priorities:

  • Supporting and valuing the pharmacy workforce
  • Supporting an integrated NHS
  • Innovation

RPS President Sandra Gidley said: “We’re clear that losing any key benefits to patient care and pharmacy practice that resulted from the COVID-19 pandemic is not an option.

“Much of the pandemic was extremely challenging but many positives have also emerged. Examples include flexible opening hours, which have given teams opportunities for professional development and time to focus on complex queries. Protected and funded learning time must be embedded within workforce planning.

“The growth of virtual consultations is transforming access to care across the health service and we want to see this implemented in pharmacies across the country to complement face-to-face advice. 

“Pharmacists must be empowered to transform patient care through greater opportunities for independent prescribing. There also needs to be a change in the law to allow all community pharmacists to make amends to prescriptions, which would improve medicines supply and bring them into line with secondary care colleagues, where this is standard practice.

“We will work with Governments, the NHS, employers and others to ensure our recommendations become the ‘new normal’ across all areas of practice. Pharmacy is at an important crossroads and the decisions and actions taken now will be critical in crafting the future we want for pharmacy and our patients.”   


We need your support.


Your dedication and commitment during the pandemic has been exceptional.

As we brace for a surge of coronavirus infections, we know that pharmacy will be at the forefront of delivering healthcare.

Whether it’s flu vaccinations or dealing with local lockdowns we need decisions and assurances from the Government to make sure our profession can cope. We must make sure pharmacists get enough supplies of PPE, rapid access to testing in all care settings, and the recognition you deserve.

You told us that our leadership and resources during in the early months of the pandemic were of critical importance. We are now updating our highly valued COVID-19 resources and training webinars to make sure they reflect current - and changing - guidance.

If the enormous mental and physical strain of the past few months is repeated ahead of this winter, the health service will be on its knees. We will be there to make sure pharmacists get mental health and wellbeing support.

We will continue to work hard to give you the tools and guidance to do your job safely. And fight to make sure you get the recognition you deserve.
We are proud to support you. But without members, none of this will be possible.

Become a member and help us do even more.
Joining costs just 60p a day. And means that, whatever the future holds, we will be here for you, so you can support the public and patients.

Join today to protect the future of pharmacy