DoH should treat pharmacists like doctors

The Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) has demanded an end to ‘medical exceptionalism' in the government's regulation of medical and non-medical healthcare professionals.

Hemant Patel
Hemant Patel

In its formal response to the Foster and Donaldson reviews of the two regulatory frameworks, the society protested that there should have been one review for both professions, rather than treating doctors differently ‘simply because they are doctors.’

The RPS document states: ‘We see medical exceptionalism as highly undesirable in principle and likely to hinder rather than promote improvements in the quality and safety of healthcare. It is also difficult to justify in terms of the public interest.’

The society said the Donaldson report, Good Doctors, Safer Patients, was generally well-researched and evidence-based. But it described the Foster report, The Regulation of Non-medical Healthcare Professionals, as lacking evidence for its conclusions and proper costings.

In a letter accompanying the RPS response, society president Hemant Patel said: ‘We urge the joint implementation board for the Foster and Donaldson reviews to pursue a consistent approach between the medical and non-medical professions.’

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