Following the official laying of the Pharmaceutical Society NI’s Annual report with the Northern Ireland Assembly, President of the Pharmaceutical Society NI, Dr Jim Livingstone said: “I was absolutely delighted to be appointed President of the Pharmaceutical Society NI in October 2014 and regard the laying of our Annual Report 2014/15 as an early milestone in helping the organisation develop its role as a modern regulator of the pharmacy profession during my four years in office.
Effective regulation in healthcare is undoubtedly a key component in the continuous effort to ensure patient safety and public confidence in the pharmacy profession as well as high quality health services in general. These are objectives to which I am passionately committed and I know that the high standards that characterise pharmacy today in Northern Ireland provide an excellent basis on which to progress.
Throughout the report you will see how we have progressed against our Corporate Strategy and continue to deliver effective local regulation. The Professional Standards Authority annually assess the performance of all nine UK healthcare regulators and last year we were one of only five who met at least 23 of the PSA’s 24 Standards of Good Regulation.
Recognising the continued influence the Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust Public Inquiry (the Francis Report) has over the health service and health care regulation, we have continued to make developments against its findings and recommendations. This last year saw the launch of a consultation on proposals for a new Code of Ethics for pharmacists in Northern Ireland, with a new focus on the professional duty of candour. The organisation also reviewed its ‘Raising Concerns Guidance’, and has begun conversations with those delivering pharmacy services in Northern Ireland concerning the need for adequate whistle blowing policies”.
Looking forward Dr Livingstone said:
“Upon my appointment I stated an intention to review the governance structures going forward, and I plan to do this over the next year. It is vital that the governance of the organisation moving forward is effective, modern, and fit for purpose.
Council is aware of changes in the direction that both the profession and commissioners may wish to develop the practise of pharmacy. The Department of Health Social Services and Public Safety has recently published its five year strategy for pharmacy, ‘Making It Better through Pharmacy in the Community’. It is for the profession of course to determine how it develops. As a modern regulator, we are already working on initiatives to ensure that regulation facilitates developments within the profession and service delivery, rather than acting as an unnecessary barrier to change.
Much has been achieved in the last year and I am confident that even more can be achieved in 2015/16”.
The Annual Report 2012/13 can be read here: www.psni.org.uk/publications/annual-reports-2/