Putting Medicines Safety First in Wales

26.06.14 Royal Pharmaceutical SocietyRob Davies, member of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society’s Welsh Pharmacy Board reflects on the 2015 Medicines Safety Conference and the benefits of attending this year’s forthcoming event.

As a pharmacist and independent prescriber, medicines safety is an issue close to my heart. It is our pre-occupation as a profession, ensuring medicines are appropriate for the patient, are taken safely and as intended. I was excited therefore to attend the RPS Wales annual Medicines Safety Conference last year to hear about strategic plans for Wales and to learn more from practice examples. Read more Putting Medicines Safety First in Wales

Branded, generic and identical medicines – how much should you pay?

jaynelawrenceby Professor Jayne Lawrence, RPS Chief Scientist

Increasingly the public are being encouraged by the Government to take greater responsibility for their own health. In particular, they are being prompted to manage any minor and self-limiting medical condition themselves, which may result in the purchase of an over-the-counter (OTC) medicine.

While it is well recognised that a generic version of a medicine is cheaper than the original branded product, the reasons behind a patient choosing the branded or generic version are complex – in addition to medicine cost, other factors such as advertising, brand loyalty, product packaging or a perception of higher quality can all play a part in the decision a patient makes when purchasing a medicine. Read more Branded, generic and identical medicines – how much should you pay?

Back to Uni – A Survival Guide

IanIt’s not long now until you start or return to Uni. Looking forward to getting back to those early starts and hard work? Possibly not, especially after enjoying a few well-deserved months off or maybe you’ve been working hard over summer? The transition back can be a challenging one. This guide, by Ian Towle at University of Strathclyde, may help you get back into the swing.

1. Get organised
Try to get organized early – even before coming back. This may be as simple as reading over the year handbook, buying new stationary or looking at the reading list for your classes. Thinking about this sort of stuff puts you in the right frame and can make things easier for you before all the other new information hits you on Day 1.

2. Sort your sleep pattern
So you’ve been burning the candle at both ends for the last few months? Those late nights and later mornings may have got you into a certain routine. Try planning ahead a few days before you come back to get your sleep pattern back into the way it was last semester. It might lessen the shock when that alarm clock goes off at 6am! You’ll have some long days ahead, so you need to get your beauty sleep in.

3. List your goals
What do want to achieve this year? It can be useful to reflect on things you think you’d like or need to do this year. Try making a list of what you want to do and why you want to do it. Perhaps is to join a new club, spend more quality time in library or even just make more classes on time. Keep the goals simple, but make sure they are SMART.

4. Plan your budget early
Think about your expenditure early. You may be tempted to burn through those summer earnings or your new loan on nights out. Re-check you bank balance against expenses such as living costs (board, rent and utilities), public transport, food and entertainment. Keep an eye out for student deals, (lunch specials or discounted clothing). You can still eat healthy on a budget – it just needs a bit of planning. Part-time jobs can be useful too.

5. Find a balance
Lastly, Uni doesn’t mean all work and no play or vice versa! Again, with a little planning you can get that balance right, so you can get a good study/life balance. You can’t sustain 100 miles per hour all the time, so make sure you factor in ‘you’ time to relax, exercise and sleep! With a busy schedule, you may not find a lot of free time, but even just a quick chat with a friend, can let you disengage for short time. Enjoy your year!

Ian Towle MRPharmS, Senior Teaching Fellow

Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy & Biomedical Sciences,

University of Strathclyde, Glasgow


Community Innovators – Jay Badenhorst

Jay 150Part of our series on Inspirational Community Innovators

Jay Badenhorst is a community pharmacist that started his career in South Africa. He moved to the UK in 2001 and soon after that decided to stay permanently. He is passionate about pharmacy and the potential that community pharmacy can play in the health and wellbeing of patients.

He once said “In order to be a great leader you don’t need an official title. Whether you’re a pharmacy manager, assistant or technician, you can achieve great things.” He believes that it takes a multifaceted approach to ensuring patients’ best interests are always kept at heart in community pharmacy. Every team members brings a valuable contribution to ensuring every contact counts. He believes it is up to employers to ensure that the professional development of all team members in the pharmacy is ongoing, including investing time into the development of newly qualified pharmacists. Read more Community Innovators – Jay Badenhorst

Community Pharmacy Forward View

Sandra Gidley 3By Sandra Gidley, Chair of the RPS English Pharmacy Board

You may know about the NHS Five Year Forward View, published in 2014, which outlined the future of the NHS in a world where people are living longer with complex health needs.

The Community Pharmacy Forward View, published today, aims to provide a sense of direction and vision for community pharmacy aligned with the ambitions of the NHS. Read more Community Pharmacy Forward View

You can run, but you can’t hide – the future of drug testing in sport

By Richard Parsons, Pharmaceutical Scientist and expert in drugs and sport

The Olympic Games in Rio officially open later today yet already we have been embroiled in degrees of controversy. At the forefront is the controversy surrounding doping. We are playing a cat and mouse game with the doping cheat – we develop new and more sensitive tests for the latest doping agents, and in response they try to circumvent those tests by developing new drugs and new doping regimes. Thus we go round in a cat and mouse circle of detection and avoidance. We are playing a game of catch-up in which we are greatly assisted by whistleblowers, insiders who pass new drugs onto the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), or provide information on doping procedures employed, quite often at great risk to themselves. Read more You can run, but you can’t hide – the future of drug testing in sport

Top tips to get you through your Hospital Interviews

MichaelMichael Champion, Student, Social Media and Communications Lead of RPS East Anglia and Anticoagulation Practitioner at West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust, tells us the tips that got him through his Hospital pre-reg interviews.


Read more Top tips to get you through your Hospital Interviews

Preparing for your Hospital Pre-Reg Interviews

Aamer ImageWe spoke to Aamer Safdar, Principal Pharmacist Lead for Education and Development at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust and RPS English Pharmacy Board Member about the best way you can prepare for your Hospital pre-reg interviews.  Read more Preparing for your Hospital Pre-Reg Interviews

Top tips for your pre- registration year

RPS member Morenike Adeleke has just completed her pre reg year, check out her fantastic advice to anyone just starting out.

I did my degree at Medway School of Pharmacy and completed my pre-reg year with Delmergate Ltd, a small independent 20160724_185642chain of pharmacies in Kent. I actually lived out for the year as I’m based in London but the branch was located in Herne Bay. I was nervous about living out, since it was a very rural area and I didn’t know anyone. I did miss home a lot but I was able to go home at the weekends so it wasn’t all bad. Read more Top tips for your pre- registration year