Scottish Pharmacy Board

2013 has proved to be a particularly important year for the profession in Scotland with the publication both of Wilson & Barber’s “Review of NHS Pharmaceutical Care of Patients in the Community in Scotland” and of the Scottish Government’s “Prescription for Excellence – A Vision and Action Plan for the right pharmaceutical care through integrated partnerships and innovation”.

We have welcomed both these pieces of work and were particularly delighted to see much of what we proposed during the consultation phase of the Wilson & Barber Review incorporated into the final Report. In turn, much of what Wilson & Barber produced was then ambitiously and courageously set within Prescription for Excellence. In what must be one of the most radical government pharmacy policy documents for a generation, the pharmacy profession is recognised as an important and integral component of the wider Scottish Government’s 2020 Vision for Health and Social Care and its Quality Strategy. Prescription for Excellence places pharmacists and pharmacy services at the very core of direct health care delivery through establishing a framework within which further innovative pharmacy practice and integrated partnerships can flourish to deliver pharmaceutical care for the benefit of patients in Scotland.

All of our work streams in the Scottish Pharmacy Board’s Business Plan for 2014 are driven by the ambition of advancing pharmacists’ clinical role to ensure the safe and effective use of medicines by the public and to improve person centred care. I firmly believe that we can only achieve this ambition through effective intra and inter professional partnership working and collaboration at all stages, from shared learning to shared best practice. We are very pleased that this is recognised and stated explicitly within the Scottish Government’s ambition.


How do we improve pharmaceutical care for older people?

The Royal Pharmaceutical Society has made a strong commitment to improving the pharmaceutical care of older people.

Improving patient outcomes-better use of multi-compartment compliance aids report and guidance. Challenging the use of MCAs as a panacea, putting the needs of patients at the centre of decisions through robust holistic assessment. FAQs on the MCA Report can be found here.

In 2012 we published our report 'Improving pharmaceutical care in care Homes'.

This year we are looking to continue dialogue across the health and care community about the next steps we need to take.

In partnership with NHS Education for Scotland and the NHS Directors of Pharmacy for Scotland, the RPS jointly hosted a conference, on 20 June in Glasgow, that looked at improving pharmaceutical care for all older people. A Flash Report from the event can be found here.

To find out more about the work we're doing on improving pharmaceutical care for older people and the actions from the conference, please see our 'Improving pharmaceutical care for older people' news story. 

What we are working on


  • Working in partnership with GPs
    The Royal Pharmaceutical Society in Scotland has developed a close working relationship with the Royal College of General Practicioners Scotland. In order to improve patient care we have developed our 'Breaking Down the Barriers' document that sets out the joint principles of both profesisons in Scotland and commits to an Action Plan that will be carried out over the following year.
  • Improving pharmaceutical care in care homes
    The report identifies priority care areas, such as reducing polypharmacy, antipsychotic and psychoactive medication and improving falls and hip fracture prevention.  The report also calls for better sharing of best practice and empowering pharmacists and other frontline practitioners in care homes.

Older campaigns

  • Methadone campaign
    Working with the Scottish Government and other partners to improve outcomes for drug misusers
  • Control of Entry
    Working with Scottish politicians to ensure that the voice of pharmacy is heard as new rules are drawn up to govern the application process for new NHS Community Pharmacy Contracts.
  • Medicines Safety
    Integrated working with government and key stakeholders to make the UK the safest place to take medicines.
  • Medicine Distribution
    Find out more about our work on medicine distribution.
  • Hospital pharmacy workforce 
    Read about our investigation into the staffing issues in Scottish hospitals
  • Workplace pressures survey
    Read about the results of our recent workplace pressures survey.