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RPS membership numbers drop again

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RPS membership numbers drop again

The Royal Pharmaceutical Society has seen another drop in its membership numbers.

According to the 2023 Annual Report, emailed to RPS members on May 8, there were a total of 37,474 members at the end of 2023 compared with 38,193 in 2022, a fall of 719.

The Society, while pointing out there had been growth in the number of students in membership, continued its longstanding policy of not revealing the number of full members, the largest membership category, saying only that it “remains a challenge”.

Membership revenues in 2023 fell by 4 per cent to £4.50m from £4.69m in 2022.

The overall picture was brighter, with total revenues up by £653,000 from £25.60m in 2022 to £26.25m in 2023. This contributed to an operating surplus of £2.11m, up from £1.32m in 2022.

Publishing division Pharmaceutical Press recorded a turnover of £18.76m, up from £18.50m the previous year, while overall income from membership, education and professional leadership activities increased from £6.43m to £6.87m.

However, the turbulence in the financial markets meant the Society’s investments took a hit. The total value of listed investments at the year end was £9.61m excluding £1m held as cash awaiting transfer to investment fund CCLA. This was down from a total of £11.34m in 2022.

The market value of the Society’s headquarters in East Smithfield fell by £3.77m “owing to a deterioration in market conditions”.

In the report, president Claire Anderson and chief executive Paul Bennett, referring to the joint workforce wellbeing survey conducted with “Pharmacy Support” (sic), which found that 86 per cent of pharmacists are at high risk of burnout, say there is urgent need for system reform and support in pharmacy.

This must include “protected learning time and changes to regulations that allow pharmacists to use their teams to greater effect in the safe and effective delivery of care”.


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