The Royal Pharmaceutical Society has presented evidence to the Welsh Parliament regarding the pressures facing pharmacy teams in recent years.
Last Thursday (November 18) RPS Wales director Elen Jones gave evidence to the Senedd health and social care committee’s inquiry into waiting times in the health service, highlighting the strain on pharmacy teams during the pandemic and the need to prioritise the wellbeing and training needs of the workforce in Covid recovery plans.
Ms Jones highlighted the sector’s potential to address health inequalities and the possibilities but said workforce planning was needed to help pharmacists get adequate training and to maintain a sustainable workforce.
She raised a number of points with the inquiry, including the increase in clinical services being provided by community pharmacists, the importance of furthering the pharmacist independent prescribing agenda and the need for direct referrals between community pharmacies and other NHS services.
She also stressed that services like NHS 111 “should be better promoted to the public” once they are available throughout Wales, said the RPS.
After the evidence session Ms Jones said: “I was pleased to give evidence alongside colleagues from the Royal College of General Practitioners, Community Pharmacy Wales and the Royal College of Nursing.
“Our key message to the community was clear: while more can be done to harness the expert skills and knowledge of pharmacists, this must always be underpinned by proper workforce planning that accounts for workload pressures and builds in sufficient training time.”
“We look forward to the committee’s final report and recommendation and will continue to champion pharmacy’s role in the Senedd.”