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The Pharmaceutical Journal

Diagram showing different pharmacy organisations in the UK and who they represent

Pharmacy organisations in the UK: a complicated webSubscription


Pharmacy is a diverse profession and this is reflected in the wide variety of organisations that can represent the interests of pharmacists, pharmacy owners, trainees and students.

See more infographics


Rusty wheel from the industrial revolution

Room for improvement with the new community pharmacy urgent medicine supply schemeSubscription

The new urgent medicine supply scheme from NHS England requires more thought and revision.


Illustration of three people sweeping a bunch of leaves on a very windy day

Why legal action is not the best way to address the community pharmacy funding crisis in England

By Terry Maguire

As pharmacy contractors in England suffer budget cuts and their leaders instigate legal action, Northern Ireland pharmacy contractor Terry Maguire argues why this might not be a good idea and what English contractors might learn from their Celtic cousins.


Shanelle Hall, Director of Supply Division, UNICEF

A breakthrough in lowering the price of vaccines to increase access to childrenSubscription


Shanelle Hall from UNICEF discusses the breakthrough pentavalent vaccine three-year tender with six vaccine suppliers.

Books and Arts

Cover of the book "A taste of his own medicine"

Protagonist exacts revenge in this fascinating pharmacy fiction titleSubscription


A taste of his own medicine, by Linda Fawke

Cover of ‘The Acid Watcher Diet'

A good introduction to formulation scienceSubscription


How to develop robust solid oral dosage forms: from conception to post-approval, by Bhavishya Mittal

Book cover of ‘Marijuana: a short history’, by John Hudak

A potted history of cannabis in the United StatesSubscription


Marijuana: a short history by John Hudak.

Learning article

Pharmacist takes the blood pressure of an elderly patient

How to support cancer patients in community pharmaciesSubscription


Every community pharmacy team will come into contact with cancer patients or their family members. This article aims to provide community pharmacists and healthcare professionals with the tools to be able to speak confidently to patients with cancer and summarises the useful resources available.

Man looking at gluten free products in a supermarket

How to identify symptoms of coeliac disease in community pharmacy and primary careSubscription

By , ,

It is estimated that in the UK there are more than half a million people with clinically undiagnosed coeliac disease, caused by an adverse immune response to gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley and rye. Pharmacists and healthcare professionals can play a key role in identifying individuals with symptoms, referring them for testing, ultimately leading to earlier diagnosis.


Roger Humbles, community pharmacist and owner of Fourway Pharmacy

How a community pharmacy owner became the face of a media campaignSubscription


As a community pharmacist, Roger Humbles is aware of the increased levels of illness, deaths and pressure on the NHS in winter. Here, he talks about publicity and running his own pharmacy.

Sophie Riddell with a client

How pharmacists can become aesthetic practitionersSubscription


As demand for non-surgical cosmetic procedures increases, Saša Jankovic finds out about training requirements and industry regulation, and looks at the benefits pharmacists can provide patients by offering these services.

Annie Pannelay, principal consultant for healthcare practice at the Economist Intelligence Unit

What pharmacist Annie Pannelay does as a consultant for a media companySubscription


Annie Pannelay works in the healthcare practice of the Economist Intelligence Unit — as a pharmacist, not a journalist.


General Pharmaceutical Council signage

PDA launches judicial review over GPhC standards for pharmacy professionals

The Pharmacists’ Defence Association has launched a judicial review against the General Pharmaceutical Council over its draft standards for pharmacy professionals, which the union has criticised in the past.

osteoporotic hip

Osteoporosis drugs may cause microcracks in bone

Bisphosphonates are prescribed to prevent fractures in osteoporosis, but new research suggests that, paradoxically, they can also cause tiny cracks in bone

Man purchases medicines online

UK regulator clamps down on unsafe online medicines sites

The Care Quality Commission is warning the public to be cautious when buying medicines online after inspections highlighted significant concerns about patient safety.

glomerulonephritis--kidney damage

Common heartburn drugs linked to chronic as well as acute kidney damage

Proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs), widely used for acid suppression therapy, are associated with long-term kidney damage even in patients who have not experienced acute kidney injury (AKI), researchers find.

Elizabeth Wade, director of policy and communications, Pharmacy Voice

Pharmacy Voice wants commissioners to see how community pharmacy tackles hypertension

Community pharmacies in England can enhance the ‘huge volume of work’ they do in the management of hypertension, according to a report by the community pharmacy representative body Pharmacy Voice.

Salmonella bacteria, micrograph

WHO lists bacteria that need to be targeted for antibiotic development

The World Health Organization has drawn up a list of families of bacteria that pose the greatest risk to human health and which should be targeted by drug companies when developing new antibiotics.

News in Brief

European Medicines Agency building, Canary Wharf

European Medicines Agency announces first public hearing to gather evidence for valproate safety review

15 MAR 2017

Members of the public are being invited to speak about their experiences of an epilepsy drug as part of a safety review by the European Medicines Agency (EMA).

Effects of NSAIDs on the heart

Combining NSAIDs with misoprostol may reduce risk of cardiovascular side effects

13 MAR 2017

Patients taking non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and misoprostol, a drug commonly used to prevent and treat stomach ulcers, have a lower risk of having a serious cardiovascular event compared with patients taking NSAIDs alone, according to new research.


App launched to help pharmacy undergraduates to learn about drugs

13 MAR 2017

A new app to support UK pharmacy undergraduates to learn about key drugs has been developed by a collaboration of 16 pharmacy schools.

Administering chemotherapy to patient

Nurses who administer cancer drugs could be at risk of developing health problems

13 MAR 2017

More research is needed to assess the harmful effects on oncology healthcare staff of administering cytotoxic drugs and whether enough is being done to protect them, a research report by consumer and business analyst MindMetre says.


NICE wants patients with suspected sepsis to be treated within an hour

10 MAR 2017

Patients with suspected sepsis must be assessed and treated within one hour by hospital staff if they are deemed to be at high risk of severe illness or death, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, the health technology assessment body, has said.

General Pharmaceutical Council signage

Pharmacy regulator appoints financial services expert as deputy chief executive

9 MAR 2017

The General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) has appointed Megan Forbes as its deputy chief executive and director of operations, effective from 5 June 2017.


NICE recommends two more cancer drugs for routine NHS use

3 MAR 2017

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), the health technology assessment body, has issued positive opinions on two bowel cancer drugs, cetuximab and panitumumab, that were previously available through the cancer drugs fund (CDF). 

Woman with allergy

US FDA approves Odactra sublingual treatment for dust mite allergy

3 MAR 2017

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the sublingual allergy immunotherapy tablet (SLIT) Odactra for the treatment of dust mite allergy. 

Ken Jarrold, chair of the Rebalancing Medicines Legislation and Pharmacy Regulation Programme Board

Changes to pharmacy supervision laws ‘will not be easy’, says chair of rebalancing board

1 MAR 2017

Plans to change the law around pharmacy supervision “will not be easy”, especially in England, the chair of the government-appointed board set up to push through the reforms has warned.

The Pharmaceutical Journal

March 2017, Vol 298, No 7899

Cover Story:

Understanding irritable bowel syndrome: bugs, brains and leaky barriers

Read more…

The Pharmaceutical Journal

View previous issue

Your RPS

Mair Davies, RPS director for Wales

RPS director for Wales: 'There’s a collaborative approach to everything in Wales'


The Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) Welsh Pharmacy Board launched its manifesto in November 2015. Mair Davies, director for RPS Wales, talks to Julia Robinson about progress made since the launch, and her objectives for 2017 and beyond.

Robbie Turner, new Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) director for England

RPS director for England: 'Let's make sure pharmacists feel supported and invigorated'


New RPS director for England, Robbie Turner, tells Julia Robinson about his plans for 2017 and how he hopes his experience as chief executive of Community Pharmacy West Yorkshire will help him achieve his goals.

Alex MacKinnon, director for the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) Scotland

RPS director for Scotland: '2017 will be a year of opportunity rather than challenge'Subscription


Alex MacKinnon, director for the Scotland at the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS), tells Julia Robinson what 2017 will mean for pharmacists in Scotland and how RPS Scotland plans to embrace new opportunities on behalf of the profession.


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

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