Access to medicines

Policy topic

Medicines are the most common intervention used in the National Health Service with £16.8 billion being invested in medicines in England each year, £1.7 billion in Scotland, and a further £800 million in Wales. It is important that patients have the access to medicines that they need in order to receive the best possible care.

Pharmacy plays a vital role in ensuring individuals have access to medicines. There are a number of models and routes of medicines supply ranging from the traditional dispensing in both community and hospital pharmacies through to many new and emerging models as technology advances.

These RPS Access to medicines principles are patient focused but ensure that the essential role of the pharmacist is evident at each stage. The principles are overarching and are the basis for more detailed work that the RPS will undertake in this area.