P R E S S     R E L E A S E

27th February 2007

For immediate release

Guild of Healthcare Pharmacists welcomes the formation of a General Pharmaceutical Council

The Guild of Healthcare Pharmacists welcomes the publication of the White Paper "Trust Assurance and Safety - The Regulation of health Professionals in the 21st Century" and the announcement that the dual functions of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, regulation, and representation of the profession, will be split. The Guild has supported the split of these functions whilst recognising the good work of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society in carrying out the regulatory function.

Anthony Oxley, President of the Guild said "we welcome the formation of a General Pharmaceutical Council to regulate pharmacists and pharmacy technicians and pharmacy premises, as a separate regulatory body. It is inevitable, that in the current climate, the regulatory functions must be seen to be independent of any vested interests of pharmacists in order for the public to have confidence in the system of regulation."

The Guild supports the formation of a "Royal College" type of organisation to carry on the representation function of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society starting from a "clean sheet". We will work with other pharmacy organisations to maximise the unique opportunity these changes offer the profession. Critical to the success of such a college is that all areas of practice are effectively represented, something that the Guild considers that the Royal Pharmaceutical Society has not been able to achieve: evidenced by the number of relatively small pharmacy organisations with sectoral or special interests, which dilutes the overall messages the profession needs to impart to the wider audience of the public, government and other health professionals. If a prime function of the royal college is to carry out revalidation of pharmacists and pharmacy technicians, it should be structured to accommodate the clinical roles of pharmacists now and in the future, when we expect to see far less emphasis on "hospital" or "community pharmacy" work, and much more focus on the developing clinical roles in a multidisciplinary environment.


The Guild of Healthcare Pharmacists represents UK wide over 4,000 pharmacists including the majority of hospital pharmacists, pharmacists employed by Primary Care Trusts and pharmacists employed by other public bodies such as the Healthcare Commission, and is part of the health sector of the union Amicus.

For further information please contact:

Richard Cattell, Vice President

Guild of Healthcare Pharmacists

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