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RPS releases new Responsible Pharmacist Toolkit

The new online toolkit outlines the duties of a Responsible Pharmacist, which include the maintenance of standard operating procedures.

Pharmacist talking to patient


The new online toolkit outlines the duties of a Responsible Pharmacist, which include the maintenance of standard operating procedures.

A new Responsible Pharmacist Toolkit has been released by the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS).

Since 2009, retail pharmacies have been obliged to appoint a Responsible Pharmacist to secure the safe and effective running of the pharmacy during operational hours.

The new online toolkit outlines the duties of a Responsible Pharmacist, which include the maintenance — and establishment, if necessary — of standard operating procedures; completion of the Pharmacy Record; and the display of a public notice giving the full name and General Pharmaceutical Council registration number of the Responsible Pharmacist.

The toolkit specifies the operational and regulatory activities that a Responsible Pharmacist should undertake, which include the sale of prescription-only and pharmacy medicines, and emergency supply. It also lists the activities that must only take place under the physical supervision of a pharmacist, and those that may be completed when the pharmacist is temporarily absent from the premises.

A comprehensive explanation of the rules around the absence of a Responsible Pharmacist from the premises during operational hours is also provided.

Finally, the ‘Frequently asked questions’ part of the toolkit explores a number of potentially challenging scenarios that Responsible Pharmacists may encounter, with guidance on what factors to consider when facing such situations.

“We based the FAQs on questions that members regularly ask our team. We have included them to help pharmacists who may find themselves in similar situations”, said Rakhee Amin, senior professional development pharmacist with the RPS’s professional support team, who created the toolkit.

“We hope pharmacists who will be taking on the role of a responsible pharmacist will find in this toolkit all the support and guidance they need to fulfil that role.”

The toolkit may be downloaded from the RPS website. For more information, email

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal DOI: 10.1211/PJ.2017.20203511

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