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RPS updates leadership guidance for pharmacists

New Royal Pharmaceutical Society leadership resource reflects recent changes to NHS leadership programmes.

The Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) Leadership Development Framework (LDF) sets out how pharmacists can build on their leadership skills and behaviours to improve patient care and how they and their team works

Source: Jim Gibson / Alamy

Pharmacists can use the RPS leadership development framework to improve their ways of working

Updated guidance on how all pharmacists can develop leadership skills has been published by the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS).

The RPS leadership development framework (LDF), now available on the RPS website, sets out how pharmacists can build on their leadership skills and behaviours to improve patient care and the way they and their team work.

It succeeds the previous guidance, the RPS’s 2011 Leadership Competency Framework, to take into account changes in how the NHS approaches leadership development following the Francis Inquiry and Berwick reports, as well as the changes in the structure of, and challenges facing, the NHS.

The new LDF reflects the NHS Leadership Academy’s Healthcare Leadership Model (HLM), refreshed in 2013, which brings together research on effective leadership and now underpins many NHS leadership programmes.

Catherine Duggan, director of professional development and support at the RPS, says the update was prompted by “unprecedented” changes and challenges facing healthcare in Great Britain.

“Financial pressures, changing demographics, increased patient expectations and scientific advances are all influencing the way in which healthcare is being delivered,” she says. “Underpinning this is an increased focus on the way care is provided, which places compassion, respect and humanity at the heart of leadership.”

The framework “distils the leadership behaviours that all pharmacists can develop, irrespective of where they are working, their level of experience or their seniority”, she says.

Duggan says developing leadership behaviours “can improve ways of working, enhance patient care or process development, help in adopting new approaches and create happy, dynamic, motivated staff that work as an integrated team”, while also benefiting patients and the public.

The RPS framework extends the reach of the HLM to non-NHS pharmacy sectors across Great Britain, and its principles are applicable to all pharmacists in England, Wales and Scotland.

The LDF is divided into nine domains that cover the qualities and behaviours expected of an effective leader in pharmacy. These align with the nine ‘dimensions’ of the HLM.

In addition, the RPS has developed a handbook for RPS members, which maps the competencies required by the Faculty’s Advanced Pharmacy Framework to the relevant leadership behaviours in the LDF. The RPS says this will make it easier for those pharmacists submitting portfolios. The handbook also presents case studies of pharmacists who have demonstrated capabilities in each of the nine domains.

The RPS is urging pharmacists and pharmaceutical scientists to complete the NHS Leadership Academy’s online leadership self-assessment tool, which can be used in conjunction with the Framework, to produce a report on their leadership behaviours.

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal DOI: 10.1211/PJ.2015.20067602

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