The Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) has commented on the position statement released by Community Pharmacy Scotland earlier this week.
In particular, they have said that they disagree with the call to temporarily halt the recruitment of pharmacists and pharmacy technicians to GP practice roles within Scotland.
Andrew Carruthers, Chair of the Scottish Pharmacy Board, said:
“Pharmacy professionals should be involved wherever there are medicines: this includes community pharmacies, hospitals and GP practices. Ensuring patients have access to pharmacists in all settings is an important part of delivering safe and effective care.
“We disagree with stopping the recruitment of pharmacy professionals in GP practices because we do not want to see restrictions on individuals’ career choices. Many pharmacists have benefited and continue to benefit from working in multiple settings, and they should be supported to make choices that support their professional development aspirations.
“However, we do think it is essential that there is meaningful and robust pharmacy workforce planning in place which takes into account all sectors, skill mix requirements, and workforce changes resulting from new services and digital improvements. We also need better use of pharmacy teams, better skill mix and better use of technology to help reduce the wider issues and pressures that are impacting on NHS services. It is also important to promote pharmacy as a career to bring more people into the profession.
“Finally, we would encourage community pharmacy employers to join the RPS commitment to improving pharmacists’ wellbeing by signing the RPS inclusion and wellbeing pledge, and taking action to improve the working environment for community pharmacists.”