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The Pharmaceutical Journal

Infographic showing a decade of community pharmacy funding in England and timeline of events

A decade of community pharmacy funding in EnglandSubscription


Community pharmacies in England dispense 174 million more prescription items annually than in 2010, a figure that is predicted to rise further. Despite this, total funding for the community pharmacy contract is heading back towards 2010 levels.

See more infographics


Image of a movable barrier representing access denied

Reclassifying emergency hormonal contraception levonorgestrel from a pharmacy to general sale medicine is not the answerSubscription

Instead of making levonorgestrel available to purchase in any retail outlet without medical advice, it would be better to improve emergency hormonal contraception consultations, lower the price of the medicine and make it more easily accessible via national patient group directions.


Donald Trump during his acceptance speech as the Republican candidate for the US presidency

What impact president-elect Donald Trump will have on the US healthcare systemSubscription


William Seligman takes a look at what might happen to the US healthcare system and pharma under a Trump presidency.


Tim Evans is the senior director of health, nutrition and population at the World Bank Group

Q&A: World Bank warns that inaction on antimicrobial resistance could increase healthcare costs in developing countriesSubscription


Tim Evans from the World Bank Group talks about new research that shows how inaction on antimicrobial resistance could wipe out decades of healthcare gains and dramatically increase healthcare costs in developing countries.

Learning article

Images of 2016 highlights of CPD and learning

Highlights of CPD and learning in 2016Subscription


Try our clinical quiz, with questions taken from this year’s learning and CPD articles, and check your knowledge of subjects ranging from antimicrobial therapy to bipolar disorder.

Papers with statistical data

A basic introduction to statisticsSubscription

By ,

Pharmacists and healthcare professionals involved in research and report writing should have an understanding of basic statistical methods that can be applied to study data and used in reporting research results.


Calligraphy by Mark Borthwick

How your hobbies can boost your careerSubscription


Steve Hemsley investigates the interesting hobbies of pharmacists and how the skills they gain translate into career skills.

Davina Lau, oncology pharmacist at London Bridge Hospital

My life as an oncology pharmacist in a private hospitalSubscription


Oncology pharmacist Davina Lau describes the intensity of working with patients who are having treatment for cancer.

Ross Wardle of Newport Gwent Dragons is tackled by Ulrich Beyers of Zebre

Trying hard: how I tackle my career as a professional rugby player and working as a pharmacist


As a professional rugby player and pharmacist, Ross Wardle fields questions from his colleagues about doping and is concerned about long-term health problems associated with the sport.

Adam Grainger, senior medicines performance pharmacist and special constable for the police

On the beat: my career as a police officer and pharmacistSubscription


Pharmacist Adam Grainger’s first arrest has so far been his most exciting moment as a special constable.


Entrance of Pfizer compound in Sandwich, Kent, UK

Pfizer and Flynn fined £90m for excessive pricing of epilepsy drug

The UK competition watchdog has fined two pharmaceutical companies £90m for charging what it has called excessive and unfair prices in the UK for phenytoin capsules. 

Man holding Truvada PrEP pill

NHS England to trial pre-exposure prophylaxis for HIV prevention before full roll-out

NHS England has announced it will fund a large-scale clinical trial on the use of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) for the prevention of HIV ahead of a national roll-out.

Finger prick HIV blood test

NICE recommends HIV testing in community pharmacy to cut number of undiagnosed cases

New guideline recommends that HIV testing should be available in community settings, the voluntary sector and venues where there may be high-risk sexual behaviour.

Sue Sharpe, chief executive of the PSNC

PSNC applies for judicial review of consultation on community pharmacy cuts

The Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee has applied to the High Court for a judicial review of the decision to implement cuts to community pharmacy funding in England on the grounds that it believes the secretary of state failed to carry out a lawful consultation.

A nurse teaching a patient how to use an inhaler

Patients need training to use inhalers properly, study finds

Ellipta inhaler device comes out on top in GSK-sponsored research comparing several types of inhaler devices and their misuse among COPD and asthma patients.

Young woman talks to pharmacist while holding emergency hormonal contraception blisters

Emergency hormonal contraception should be on general sale in the UK, charity urges

Emergency hormonal contraception should be available to buy from non-pharmacy retail outlets in the UK, urges the British Pregnancy Advisory Service, a reproductive health services charity.

News in Brief

Capital Building in Washington DC

US bill that heralds reform of drug approval process passed by House of Representatives

5 DEC 2016

A landmark US law that would boost funding for medical research, mental health and substance misuse services and speed up drug and medical device approval has passed its latest legislative hurdle.

Institute of Cancer Research facility in Sutton

Map of all medicines and their mode of action is created

5 DEC 2016

Scientists have mapped all 1,578 drugs licensed by the US Food and Drug Administration according to their mechanisms of action to help researchers visualise the ‘uncharted waters’ where they may find future treatments.

Sandra Gidley, chair of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society English Pharmacy Board

RPS 'delighted' with proposed changes to supervision of pharmacists training to be prescribersSubscription

2 DEC 2016By

Sandra Gidley, chair of the RPS English Pharmacy Board, says the RPS is surprised and delighted to see the GPhC consultation document proposing changes to the supervision of pharmacists training to be prescribers

Bruce Warner, deputy chief pharmaceutical officer for England

Pilot areas named for community pharmacy urgent medication referral scheme

30 NOV 2016

NHS England has published details of a new service that will see patients referred by NHS 111 to community pharmacies for urgent repeat medicines.

Acute lymphoblastic leukaemia

Juno Therapeutics' Rocket trial suspended after death

29 NOV 2016

A clinical trial testing a new immunotherapy to treat cancer, which was stopped in July 2016 after three patients died and was restarted again, has been suspended for the second time following another death.

Herbal medicine bottle

Drug interactions with dietary or herbal supplements could be cause of hospital stays

28 NOV 2016

Around 1 in 55 hospital admissions may have been caused by an adverse event triggered by a reaction between a dietary or herbal supplement and another medicine or supplement, according to Israeli research.

MHRA offices in central London

Patients lack knowledge on how to report adverse drug reactions

25 NOV 2016

A lack of awareness about reporting systems for adverse drug reactions (ADRs) and confusion about how they work are preventing patients from informing medicines safety regulators when something goes wrong, according to research published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology

NHS signage

Spending on medicines rises by 8% in England

25 NOV 2016

NHS spending on drugs in England increased by 8% to £16.8bn in 2015–2016 from £15.5bn in 2014–2015, which was largely driven by spending on medicines by hospitals, a report by NHS Digital shows.

Philip Hammond holding the autumn statement outside Downing Street

No new money for health in autumn statement

24 NOV 2016

There was no new money for the NHS or social care announced in the autumn statement on 23 November 2016, despite warnings from the NHS and local government that services are at breaking point and evidence that a crisis in social services is heightening pressure on an already overburdened NHS.

The Pharmaceutical Journal

December 2016, Vol 297, No 7896

Cover Story:

The people behind the biggest pharmacy stories of 2016

Read more…

The Pharmaceutical Journal

View previous issue

Your RPS

Imagery of mental illness: woman sits on stairs looking out to sea

What can pharmacists do to improve the physical health of people with mental illness?Subscription

By , Dolly Sud

David Branford, member of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) English Pharmacy Board, and Dolly Sud, specialist mental health pharmacist Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust, explain the importance of the role of pharmacists in improving the physical well-being of patients with severe mental illness.

General view of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society library

A browse around the RPS librarySubscription


The Royal Pharmaceutical Society library first opened its doors in 1841. Here, Julia Robinson delves into the collection’s history and speaks to its current librarians about how it developed in recent years.

Consultation important to give women advice about emergency contraceptionSubscription

29 November 2016: Neal Patel, spokesperson for the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS), was interviewed on Sky News about a call for emergency contraception to be available on the shelf as a general sale list (GSL) medicine. Patel emphasised how important the consultation was for women, giving them the advice and information they needed on both the product and their future contraceptive needs. “The consultation aims to be helpful and offers women an informed choice about what’s best ...

Need to make use of the capacity of pharmacists as medicines expertsSubscription

29 November 2016: Sandra Gidley, chair of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) English Pharmacy Board, was interviewed on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme about the RPS’s new campaign on long-term conditions. Gidley focused on the RPS’s call for a change in policy to allow non-medical prescribers to mentor pharmacist prescribers and commented on the overwhelming burden on GPs. She said: “Why not make use of the capacity of pharmacists who are highly trained health professionals, so the ...

Sandra Gidley, chair of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society English Pharmacy Board

RPS 'delighted' with proposed changes to supervision of pharmacists training to be prescribersSubscription


Sandra Gidley, chair of the RPS English Pharmacy Board, says the RPS is surprised and delighted to see the GPhC consultation document proposing changes to the supervision of pharmacists training to be prescribers

David Mowat, health secretary, speaking at the parliamentary launch

Patients with long-term conditions should be managed by pharmacistsSubscription


RPS England launches report on long-term conditions at a parliamentary event in the House of Commons.


For official announcements from The Royal Pharmaceutical society please visit the announcements page here.

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