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PDA ‘will not oppose’ Society’s bid to rejoin global pharmacy body

Pharmacy News

PDA ‘will not oppose’ Society’s bid to rejoin global pharmacy body

The Pharmacists’ Defence Association has said it “would not oppose” the Royal Pharmaceutical Society’s application to rejoin a global pharmacists’ body months after it left – but warned that the RPS should make its membership numbers publicly available if it wishes to do so.  

In a statement this afternoon, the PDA said it felt allowing the RPS to join the International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP), in line with its recently stated intentions, is “in the interests of the British pharmacy leadership eco-system”.

Earlier this week the PDA was asked whether it approved the application under FIP rules that state that an existing member in a given country should be consulted before an additional organisation joins within the same country.

It joined the FIP earlier this year in the wake of the Society’s decision to end its relationship with the international body over concerns around value for money, a move that proved controversial with many RPS members as no vote was held on the matter.

The PDA said it was “very aware” of the concerns raised around the Society’s announcement and that it “has felt and understood the frustration of pharmacists” on the issue, adding that queries have also been raised around whether the RPS rejoining “would duplicate what the PDA is now already doing in FIP for UK pharmacists”.

However it ultimately decided “that it is in the interests of the British pharmacy leadership eco system where the PDA and the RPS have different roles, for both organisations to be in membership of FIP”.

It added: “Allowing RPS to join would provide those pharmacists who are not currently members of the PDA but are members of the RPS, as well as the smaller number of pharmacists that are not permitted to be members of the PDA such as pharmacy owners, superintendent pharmacists of large chains and senior managers, with the opportunity to add their perspective within the global pharmacy discussion.”

The PDA said it has asked the FIP council to “find a suitable method to ascertain a transparent declaration of membership numbers from the RPS” in order to ensure its voting allocation on the council is “based on accurate membership numbers”.

FIP member organisations are awarded votes in accordance with their membership numbers up to a maximum of 10 votes for organisations with 30,000 or more members.

While the RPS does not publish these figures, the PDA said it estimated membership of the Society to be “somewhere between 20-29,999,” which would likely give the RPS nine votes at the council in comparison to the 10 votes granted to the PDA.

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