Long-term conditions

Help pharmacists support patients with long-term conditions
so they get the best from their medicines.

Medicines remain the most common intervention for patients with long-term conditions (LTCs). This places serious demands on the NHS and other public services. In 2015/2016 alone, the NHS spent over £16 billion on medicines in England and Scotland.

We’re calling for pharmacist-led care of people with LTCs. After all, pharmacists are the experts in medicines.

They can help patients get the best from their medicines – and make sure NHS resources are used more efficiently.



“It is so important that patients have quick and easy access to care. Being able to speak to a local pharmacist could mean that patients are able to access the right care closer to home or their workplace; completely removing the challenges of booking an appointment with a GP, cutting out waiting times and taking out the worry for many patients who get anxious visiting a surgery.

 “The Patients Association warmly welcome pharmacists becoming trained prescribers, not just because it will take pressure off GP surgeries meaning a better service for patients who need to see their GP, but also because it is a better for patients who don’t need to see their GP. It is a win-win situation for patients.”

Katherine Murphy, Chief Executive, Patients Association 

“National Voices congratulates the Royal Pharmaceutical Society for its consistent efforts to shape future roles for pharmacists that help create better lives and outcomes for people with long term conditions. In dialogue with our member charities who work with hundreds of thousands of people, RPS has shown genuine commitment to mutual learning and to pursuing effective person centred care, as reflected in this new policy position.”

Don Redding, Director of Policy, National Voices

"I welcome the recommendations of this report and the direction of travel which the RPS has outlined. "Community pharmacists are skilled, registered health professionals who are the experts in medicines use and optimisation. I want their clinical skills to be much more available to patients to help them manage not just their medicines but also their overall health through the provision of healthy lifestyle advice. "This is particularly true for patients with long term conditions who may be taking many medicines and where there is evidence that outcomes are not always as good as they could be."The RPS's report is timely because the Independent Review of Community Pharmacy Clinical Services will report later this year and it will recommend how the NHS should develop and improve clinical pharmacy services for patients."

David Mowat MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Community Health and Care

“Diabetes UK fully supports the recommendations of this report. Pharmacists are working with patients in their communities every day. Integrating them into the multidisciplinary team could really support people living with diabetes and other long-term health conditions.

“People with diabetes get just three hours support from traditional diabetes team members each year on average. Extending the role of pharmacists into areas such as prescribing and specialist referral could mean people with diabetes have more support when they most need it.”

Simon O’Neill, Director of Health Intelligence, Diabetes UK