The Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain (RPS) has made new recommendations to increase the use of pharmacist independent prescribers (PIP) in the UK.

In a statement, RPS highlighted that the role of PIPs has become ‘increasingly’ important in delivering high-quality clinical care.

The Society added that it wants to see increased use of PIPs in multi-disciplinary teams to expand patient access to care, as well as create capacity in the healthcare system and improve health outcomes.

The three core recommendations call on governments and healthcare organisations to proactively:

  • establish the right infrastructure, systems and tools to enable patients to benefit from PIPs
  • develop the PIP workforce required to work routinely as part of multi-professional teams in all health care settings
  • provide ongoing professional development for PIPs as well as expand their role in teaching and peer support.

“Non-medical prescribing was introduced in the UK some 30 years ago, but many pharmacists who trained as prescribers have been unable to use their qualification because opportunities to do so aren’t available,” said Elen Jones, director for Wales, RPS.

“During the pandemic there has been much innovative service design and we want to see healthcare systems build on this and review their service configurations to include PIPs to make the most of their professional skills.

“It’s vital that more patient-facing pharmacists have the opportunity to become prescribers too so that patients can get the care they need from a medicines expert, whether that’s in a specialist clinic in secondary care, in their local community pharmacy or even in their own home,” she added.