In 2016, there were 70.8 million visits abroad by UK residents and the World Tourism Organization expects worldwide tourist arrivals to increase to 1.8 billion by 2030
Experience of setting up and running a referral scheme from the secondary care anticoagulant clinic to community pharmacies in SwindonSubscription
The new medicines service (NMS) is an advanced service in the community pharmacy contractual framework. It consists of community pharmacist structured interviews with patients during their first month of treatment with a new medicine. The service aims to improve medicines concordance and improve patient understanding of their treatment.
A survey Diabetes UK has just conducted shows that most of us (59%) now know someone with type 2 diabetes. Yet most people would ignore four out of six symptoms of diabetes (thrush, fatigue, increased urination and extreme thirst).
Managing stained teethSubscription
Many people often visit pharmacies to ask for solutions to stained teeth. We write to highlight to pharmacists briefly the different types of staining and treatment options available.
Using the new RPS websiteSubscription
The Retired Pharmacists’ Group (RPG) Committee wishes to share its thoughts on the design and usability of the new Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) website.
A large clinical trial conducted on a drug derived from cannabis has demonstrated reduction of convulsive seizures experienced by children with a severe form of epilepsy by nearly 50%. The results, ...
Following the High Court’s ruling on 18 May 2017 rejecting the case made against the government’s funding cuts to community pharmacy in England, many may be left wondering what the future holds for the community pharmacy market.
Negative feedback from health monitoring devicesSubscription
Health is more than the sum of laboratory results and monitoring figures. In the same way, quality of life needs to reflect more than just observations.
Improving packaging safetySubscription
In Emma Wilkinson’s excellent feature on pharmaceutical packaging design (The Pharmaceutical Journal 2017;298:281), she stated that tall man lettering was introduced in 2009 following research by the National Patient Safety Agency (NPSA). The packaging for Wockhardt UK Ltd’s cephalosporin range was approved by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory ...
The media has recently highlighted that the number of prescriptions for melatonin have been increasing in children and young people. This is a cause for concern and something that The Children’s Sleep Charity is working hard to address. It is, of course, important ...
In light of the pitiful turnout for the recent Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) pharmacy board elections, it is timely to give some serious thought to the relationship between the RPS and its members. I was hopeful for a healthy turnout, given the ‘noise’ of social media activity, but it seems those participating represented a small minority ...
Is the chief pharmaceutical officer of England serving patients and the profession well?Subscription
Upon his appointment in 2005, the chief pharmaceutical officer for England Keith Ridge stated that: “Over the past few years, patients have demanded change to how health services are delivered, including pharmacy. The Government and the pharmacy profession have listened and are responding, putting pharmacy practitioners right at the front line of patient care. Prescribing of medicines by pharmacists and the new community pharmacy contract will increase access to healthcare. I intend ...
Sid Dajani’s letter (The Pharmaceutical Journal online, 13 April 2017), prompted partly by my letter two months earlier (The ...
Community pharmacy saves the day againSubscription
On Friday 12 May 2017, we saw what was possibly the biggest attack on the NHS IT infrastructure. Despite not appearing to be a specific target, it has had a massive effect on patient care. There were many GP surgeries unable to access online patient records or issue electronic prescriptions; enter community pharmacy.
From Graham Phillips’s letter about his attendance at the ‘Quality for patients: pharmacy practice now and in the future’ conference (The Pharmaceutical Journal 2017;298:234), I thought he was going to report on the conference but all he offered was a rant at the chief pharmaceutical officer (CPO) for England for, in his view, inadequate ...
Working together to find solutionsSubscription
On 8 May 2017, some local practice forum (LPF) steering group members called upon the candidates in the national pharmacy board elections to recognise the efforts of hundreds of volunteers and publicly support LPFs. Over the past two years I have visited many LPFs and have been ...
Engaging both members and non-membersSubscription
Over the past few weeks, I have been delighted to see a higher level of engagement than has probably been seen in the past. Much of this has been through modern social media routes such as Twitter and Telegram. This is something the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) should investigate further to see how it utilises these media to maximise the engagement with members and non-members that utilise these media routes. The debate has been challenging and maybe some of it has drifted into ...
So much of the work done by the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) is positive and I greatly appreciate this, but to retain and grow the membership, we must focus more on the needs and wants of the members. The work around the Faculty is a case in point. Most grassroots members I know can see no current value in joining and building a Faculty portfolio. With the introduction of General Pharmaceutical Council’s (GPhC) revalidation, members will look to the RPS for support.
The time for action is nowSubscription
The writing is on the wall or, to be more precise, the writing is in the ‘Five year forward view’, the Murray report and your local sustainability and transformation plans (STPs).
“Mental health is often missing from public health debates even though it’s critical to well-being.” — Diane Abbott
I don’t want a profession without a voiceSubscription
I dream of a day when newsbites don’t begin with: ‘The strain on the doctors and nurses…’, but instead states: ‘The doctors, pharmacists, and nurses…’.
One true voice for pharmacySubscription
The Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) must overtly support all sectors of our profession, address our issues and capitalise upon opportunities.
The latest media revelations advising that taking “even short courses of certain painkillers increased the risks of heart attacks” shows how important it is for pharmacists to be accessible as trusted healthcare professionals. Unfortunately in this era of media hype, social media hysteria, and ‘Doctor Google’, patients and customers often have misinformation overload. This means that the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS), in its unique position as leader of the profession, must take ...
Following my first full term I have been reflecting on my time as a Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) English Pharmacy Board member and the opportunities still to be realised.
Have you voted yet?Subscription
In the heat of general election fever, it would be easy to get voter fatigue. But the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) national pharmacy board elections closing on 26 May 2017 could determine the future direction of the RPS. Successful candidates will hold the post for three years, and with the current pace of healthcare change, this is a crucial decision for our profession, so make your vote count! Nothing will change if you do not do anything differently, so vote for someone passionate ...
I hope colleagues will forgive my reference to the Theresa May rhetoric, but as a community pharmacist I have to ask, is the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) really working for me? It seems that the RPS is obsessed with the practice pharmacist initiative (which, I agree, is excellent) but the implementation to date has been to benefit the few (2,000 practice pharmacists) at the expense of the many (around 30,000 community pharmacists).
How to deal with the downward spiral of pharmacySubscription
Pharmacist unemployment is a real issue. An oversupply pushes down wages and quality, and can impact on professionalism.
Dear Mr Hunt, do you know what we do?Subscription
Dear Jeremy Hunt, I am a community pharmacist. You want to cut our funding and I am not convinced you know what we do so I would like to tell you a story to explain what your proposals are really doing.
As a group of volunteers up and down the country, local practice forum (LPF) steering group members work hard to provide a local offering for members of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS). This includes, but is not limited to: education and training events; research symposia; networking and support; mentoring opportunities; PR campaigns with local politicians; engagement with schools and universities; liaising with third sector organisations and plenty more, to ensure the profession ...
Many pharmacists I have spoken to agree that the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) has lost touch with its members and that The Pharmaceutical Journal is irrelevant to them. These are seasoned pharmacists with years of experience and significant responsibility within the areas in which they work.
Problem with registering for NHSmailSubscription
I am aware that the NHS Urgent Medicine Supply Advanced Service (NUMSAS) is due to be launched in the North West of England in May 2017. Our pharmacy had previously applied for a shared NHSmail account because this is an essential part of the qualifying criteria for the NUMSAS. I have repeatedly enquired on the progress of this application, receiving the reply that pharmacies registered for NUMSAS were prioritised. The problem is that pharmacies cannot register for NUMSAS until they ...
The National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society (NRAS) has put together a video about biosimilar medicines which are entering the UK market as originator biologic medicines come off-patent. We want to encourage pharmacists and their staff to signpost suitable patients who are currently being prescribed biologics to this important new resource.
The increase in Clostridium difficile infections (CDI) in the early 1990s was associated with the widespread use of clindamycin, cephalosporins and quinolones. A nationwide drive to implement strict antimicrobial stewardship guidelines has changed the nature of the antibiotics associated with C. difficile. As a result, in NHS England and the Heart of England Foundation Trust (HEFT), C. difficile incidence has decreased by over 75% from 2007 to 2017, because ...
Following comments made by the Associated Press in the United States that dental flossing is a waste of time, there was a media-storm, leaving confusion in its wake. It is hoped that this comment will clarify matters for colleagues in pharmacy.
Homelessness is a continuing social concern across the UK. In Glasgow there are an estimated 500 people sleeping rough on the streets at any one time. In England the number of people sleeping rough has risen consecutively for the past 6 years
RPS board members must champion our aspirationsSubscription
The Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) may struggle to engage its membership, particularly those early in their careers. To find solutions, it is natural to look to the elder statesmen of the profession. However, the next generation of pharmacists are watching this RPS election with a keen eye. Although I have no vote, I hope to see board members elected who will take account of our aspirations and expectations. Undoubtedly, the profession and the Society face mounting challenges and ...
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