Online privileges mean online responsibilities…especially for professionals!

johnathanlaird150Why social media benefits outweigh the risks for pharmacists by Johnathan Laird

The dissemination of information nowadays is rapid. ‘Just Google it!’ has become a popular refrain. Health information and the privacy issues surrounding it have meant that searching for advice online is now second nature for most tech savvy patients.

I started my blogging adventure about a year ago. Little did I know back then that my blog site would attract any readers at all never mind the 36,000 hits it has received. I’m staggered at the power of the Internet and the ability of individuals like me to share information/opinions quite easily to wide and diverse audiences. It’s quite remarkable that every time I tweet I do so now to over 10,000 people.

Read more Online privileges mean online responsibilities…especially for professionals!

Why your voice is needed for Health and Social Care integration

Aileen Bryson - Practice & Policy LeadBy Aileen Bryson MRPharmS, Scottish Practice and Policy Lead

Understanding prescribing budgets, the importance of medicines in modern healthcare and promoting health and wellbeing are just some of the challenges facing Health and Social Care Partnerships in the new integrated health and social care landscape. Read more Why your voice is needed for Health and Social Care integration

My Faculty Journey: a lifetime adventure

Eleanor receiving her Faculty Pin at the Scottish National Seminar in August.
Eleanor receiving her Faculty Pin at the Scottish National Seminar in August.

By Eleanor Eunson, MFRPSII MRPharmS, community pharmacist

One of the most exciting parts of being a community pharmacist is that you never really know what you’ll have to deal with next. As the first point of contact for the majority of the public for their health problems, we can be dealing with colds/flu or skin problems or an emergency – how many of us have had “heart attacks” or “epileptic fits” at the pharmacy counter? We truly see everything from minor to major. How we react, what we do next and how we build on these experiences is what makes us tick – that is what Faculty was designed for! Read more My Faculty Journey: a lifetime adventure

Why CMS is the future for community pharmacy


By Johnathan Laird, MRPharmS, Pharmacy Manager from Turriff, Aberdeenshire and Scottish Finalist in the I Love My Pharmacist competition. You can follow Johnathan at @JohnathanLaird.

In my view, the chronic medication service (CMS) is a necessary step towards securing a future role for pharmacists within the community pharmacy setting.

There are two sides to CMS. There is the repeat supply of medicine via serial prescriptions, and the clinical side of the service in which community pharmacists provide pharmaceutical care for the patient. Both have merit. However, neither side has reached its full potential yet. Read more Why CMS is the future for community pharmacy

Carers and pharmacy

Lindsay Pic Nov2013 (1)By Lindsay Lockhart, Pharmacy Development Co-ordinator (Scotland)

I am delighted to have been asked to blog about what pharmacy can do/does to support carers.

Since 2012 Carers Trust Scotland has taken forward the Carers Trust Scotland Pharmacy Project, which was developed to; raise awareness of carers amongst pharmacists; help identify and increase the level of self-identification by people who have a caring role; and increase the number of carers aware of specialist carer support available in their local community. Read more Carers and pharmacy

Working in mental health: why I love it

Wendy Ackroyd lead pharmacist mental healthby Wendy Ackroyd MRPharmS, lead clinical pharmacist in mental health for NHS Dumfries and Galloway.

I decided to try mental health pharmacy on for size, for six months. That was 15 years ago now. It was a good fit.

When working in community pharmacy, I looked at a list of psychiatric drugs on prescriptions (usually combinations the BNF has a black dot against) and felt out of my depth to challenge it. I imagine there are a few of my colleagues who do this now.

Mental health problems are hard to measure – diagnostic criteria overlaps, you can have more than one at a time and the evidence base is… lets say RCTs contain a few less than the 18,000 subjects you see in a trial of a statin. Read more Working in mental health: why I love it

Pharmacy services for the “oldest” old

Maria Veart 150x150By Maria Veart MRPharmS, Research & Clinical Pharmacist, Hospital@Home, NHS Fife

Given the choice I imagine that most elderly patients would prefer to stay in the comfort of their own home and be treated there when ill, with friends and family close by, rather than be admitted to hospital. Now, thanks to a project in NHS Fife 80% of elderly patients in this area are able to receive hospital-like treatments in their own home. Read more Pharmacy services for the “oldest” old

Patient Safety Programme in Scotland

By Annamarie McGregor, Professional Support Pharmacist for the RPS in Scotland

As part of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society’s commitment to medicines safety, the Local Practice Forums in Scotland have each been looking at specific elements of the Scottish Patient Safety Programme (SPSP).  The discussion held at RPS on the 7th December linked in with the current work programme of the Healthcare Improvement Scotland (HIS) and the implementation plans of their Strategic Plan in Secondary care. The ways in which this can be rolled out in Primary Care was a great incentive for all sectors of the Scottish pharmacy profession to come together and get involved in this debate. Read more Patient Safety Programme in Scotland