Networking group rules


These rules are aimed at the Networking groups (“Groups”) user base and will be used to help users understand how Networks will be controlled and governed.

The Groups structure will be made up of open, closed and hidden groups. The definition of an open group is anyone is able to join e.g. the General Group is made up of pharmacists from all backgrounds and may include some non-pharmacists who are invited experts to support the group. Open groups aim to promote the open discussion and review of information.

Closed groups are aimed at dealing with specific topics or clinical practice and users have to have a valid reason for joining that group, and make a request to the moderator of that group to get access approved. An example of a closed group is the Secure Environment Pharmacists Group.

Hidden groups are for our internal use only.


  • Members can belong to a number of Groups if they wish
  • Members can request to join a closed group via the moderator of that group
  • Experts who are not members of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society can be invited by a Group to be a guest.  This request will need to come to the Networks Manager.
  • If a group falls into non-activity for an extended period it can be removed by the Networks Manager.

Setting up a new Group

Members submit an online application form covering the following areas, which is directed to the Networks Manager:

  • Why do you want to form a focus group?
  • Outline the benefits to the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, its members and to the profession as a whole – brief
  • What will be the Group’s key focus area?
  • Where is membership likely to come from? (sector / content)
  • Will the Group have a local or national focus? If you are applying to set up a local Group we need to understand the interface with your Local Practice Forum
  • Expected membership size (estimate) – minimum size 6
  • Provide contact details for lead contact(s) / moderators - minimum 2 (see moderator rules below)
  • Provide text for the Group’s  homepage:  Scope (including target audience) and Aims /objectives
  • If a Group already exists outside our Website we will generally not want to compete with that Group, but may instead like to work in partnership with it and towards a collaborative model.


We very much welcome the role of the moderators in our Groups and appreciate their work with us in making Networks a successful environment.  Moderators exist across all Groups and have been recruited by us to help offer advice, and monitor content of their Group.  In most cases they are volunteers and external to our staff. 

The main objectives of a moderator are as follows:

  • Help monitor the activities of the Group
  • Help ensure there is professional conduct in the content posted by Group members
  • Respond to requests from users if they request to join their Group in a professional and efficient manner
  • They have the right to accept or reject members or guests from their Group if there is alleged breach of our terms and conditions or rules by any users
  • Check that any complaints made by members are being dealt with efficiently alongside other moderators and the Networks Manager
  • Relay any concerns or improvements back to the Networks Manager
  • Help to harvest content of the Group for the main website
  • Share advice and guidance with other moderators by using the Moderators Group


The Group Rules For Users as set out below are designed to ensure that Groups are a safe place for professional information exchange, discussion and knowledge sharing.  

Users are required at all times to adhere to these rules, as well as to our Website Terms of Use, when accessing, using and/or participating in any Group.

1. Use Groups to learn from and to support your colleagues

Take from Groups what you consider is useful, but also give back what you can, when you can. Share your knowledge and resources on the site and encourage others to do the same. Be polite and respectful at all times and remember that others may have a different point of view or level of understanding/experience and therefore may not agree with you. Remember that you can disagree without becoming disagreeable.  We are trying to accommodate pharmacists from all sectors.

2. Use workplace support first, where appropriate

Your agreed support structures or procedures should always be considered first before seeking colleagues support on Groups, eg, clinical supervision or local protocols.

3. Add your content just once

Save time and effort by only adding content to one area of our Website. The moderators will share content to other Groups if it is relevant and appropriate to do so.

4. Do not use Groups for advertising

Do not advertise for personal or commercial gain.  This specifically prohibits advertising paid jobs or professional services on the site for pharmacists or patients. We reserve the right to edit or remove advertising. Recommending professionally relevant resources is permitted, please read our guidance on recommendations.

5. Be clear, courteous, concise and constructive

Summarise the theme in the title, use simple, accessible but professional language, write out abbreviations in full, adopt a friendly tone, do not write in capitals or overuse exclamation marks and if appropriate sign off and thank people at the end.

6. You are responsible for your actions on this site

Always appraise, reflect upon and validate what you read and ensure you have a sound basis for your decisions and actions and only operate within your scope of practice and experience. If in doubt seek guidance from clinical colleagues or supervisors or seek further evidence before acting.

7. Respect copyright, data protection, privacy and the Code of Ethics at all times

Do not distribute text or graphics that are copyright protected unless you have permission to do so. Clearly state your source if you quote a book, journal, website or other reference. Do not publish onto Groups another person's contact details unless you have their explicit consent to do so.  

Do not publish examples of patients' medical records anywhere on this site.

These Group Rules For Users form part of our Website Terms of Use for using Groups.