RPS partners with health charity on workforce vision project
The Royal Pharmaceutical Society has announced a new partnership with health policy charity the King’s Fund through which it hopes to influence the direction of pharmacy practice in England over the next 10 years.
The joint project will involve a series of stakeholder events as well as a consultation seeking input on a new “vision” for pharmacists and pharmacy teams working across different settings.
It will look at the role pharmacists can play in improving patient outcomes, reducing health inequalities, future-proofing the workforce and harnessing new technologies to improve healthcare.
The RPS said the new initiative “recognises the urgent need” to build on the innovation that took place during the pandemic and help meet the “increasingly complex health needs” of patients.
It follows the recent publication of a report by RPS Scotland calling for a ‘core generalist role’ to be created for pharmacists by 2030 to facilitate cross-sector working.
RPS England director Ravi Sharma, who will be leading on the project, said the RPS wanted pharmacists working in all areas of practice to get in touch with their ideas and examples of best practice.
The RPS and King’s Fund will begin identifying key themes this month and hold their first online engagement event on May 16, with a consultation expected to launch in August. The vision document is slated to be published in December.
RPS England board chair Thorrun Govind said: “NHS reforms, along with an unprecedented era of economic, demographic and technological change, present both challenges and opportunities for the pharmacy profession.
“Now is the moment to seize the initiative and set out a new professional vision that builds on the extraordinary work of pharmacy teams during the pandemic and reflects the new ways of working in multidisciplinary teams across systems to improve patient care.”
King’s Fund chief executive Richard Murray said: “Health and care in England is facing a historic challenge. The difficult recovery from the pandemic and rising inequalities adds to the longstanding need to provide better, more joined-up and convenient services to patients and the public.
“In this context, the pharmacy profession has a great opportunity to improve health and health services as part of a wider move to more integrated care and this vision aims to ensure this opportunity becomes a reality.”