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Insight Online – August 2021

In this issue, we share pharmacists' concerns on the impact pharmacy closures are having on patients and the NHS. Also, we ask members to sign a petition to help long COVID be recognised as a disability.

Tue 24th August 2021 The PDA

In this issue:

  • Concerns over avoidable pharmacy closures
  • PDA calls for long COVID to be recognised as a disability
  • Pharmacy closures across the UK
  • PDA confirms speakers for the CPC!
  • PDA’s Education Hub delivers key successes over the last year
  • PDA Regional Official speaks at Pharmacy Forum NI event
  • GPhC issues warning about online prescribing practice
  • Latest News
  • Discover how much you could save with PDA Plus

Concerns over avoidable pharmacy closures  

Last week we highlighted concerns about avoidable pharmacy closures where contractors seemingly breached their agreement with the NHS and opted to close rather than engage available locums. This then denied patients the access to a pharmacist and pharmacy which the NHS has promised to provide.

As part of our efforts to address the issue of avoidable closures, we have published an example on the PDA website that demonstrates what is sadly becoming a regular experience for pharmacists, patients and their communities, due to the decisions and actions of some employers.



PDA calls for long COVID to be recognised as a disability

We are supporting a TUC (Trade Union Congress) petition calling on the UK government to formally recognise long Covid as a disability under the Equality Act 2010.

Latest Government figures revealed a staggering 385,000 people have been living with symptoms of long Covid for a year or more. This includes pharmacists who have contacted us for advice and support with this chronic condition.

To sign the petition, click here.


Pharmacy closures across the UK 

The volumes of incidents where contractors choose to close pharmacies rather than engage an available locum, appear to be reaching epidemic proportions, and pharmacists are concerned about the impact on patients, as well as the damage this does to the reputation of the profession.

We are therefore asking pharmacists to help collate information about when and where these closures are occurring.

To report a closure, click here.



Stay connected with the PDA on social media 


We are active on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube.

If you would like to stay updated on all PDA-related news and events and pharmacy-related issues, we encourage you to follow us on social media today!

PDA confirms speakers for CPC!

We are pleased to confirm speakers for the two sessions we are running at the Clinical Pharmacy Congress (CPC) this year.

Delivering race equality in Pharmacy 

Friday 24 September, 9.30 AM – 10.15 AM, Leadership Theatre

This session invites pharmacists to hear a range of perspectives on what can be done to end social injustice in pharmacy and how things can be improved. Speakers confirmed include:

  • Chair – Bharat Nathwani, Policy Officer at the PDA
  • Elsy Gomez Campos, President of the PDA BAME Network
  • Rahul Singal, Chief Pharmacist
  • Tohidul Islam, CEO, The Pharmacist Cooperative

Women in Pharmacy

Saturday 25 September, 1 PM – 1.45 PM, Leadership Theatre

This panel event will discuss the next steps in ensuring the progress towards full and equal opportunities for women in pharmacy continues. Speakers confirmed include:

  • Chair – Claire Ward, Director of Public Affairs, PDA
  • Una O’Farrell, PDA Regional Official for Northern Ireland and Locum Pharmacist
  • Roz Gittins, Director of Pharmacy, Humankind
  • Thorrun Govind, Chair of the English Pharmacy Board

As an official partner of the event, we are able to offer you a complimentary event pass. For more information and to register your place, click below.


We will also be running two sessions at the Pharmacy Show in October 2021. For more information, click here.


PDA’s Education Hub delivers key successes over the last year

In April 2020, we made a commitment to all provisionally registered pharmacists to ensure that they had the support they needed.

The launch of the Education Hub in August 2020 delivered on that promise, and over the last year, it has focused on supporting prov-regs, trainees (pre-regs) and student members.

Read more

PDA Regional Official speaks at Pharmacy Forum NI event 

Pharmacy Forum NI, the professional leadership body for pharmacists in Northern Ireland recently held an event title ‘Gender in NI pharmacy & the Power of Parity’.

PDA Regional Official for Northern Ireland, Una O’Farrell gave an inspiring talk titled ‘Be curious and be confident’.

Read more

GPhC issues warning about online prescribing practice

The concerns of the regulator reflect PDA member experiences and we welcome this statement.

Members who are concerned about unsafe practices by their employer should contact the PDA service centre for advice at the earliest opportunity by emailing

Read more

Below is a summary of some of the other key news stories that have been published on the PDA website recently:

23/08/2021 – PDA Union members now get access to STUC webinars and events

23/08/2021 – Community pharmacists acting together to improve pay

20/08/2021 – Closures: Health board confirms some pharmacy contractors are not reporting their closures to the NHS

18/08/2021 – LGBT+ Pharmacists’ Network Newsletter – August 2021

14/08/2021 – Helping pharmacists to realise the benefits of being in a union and the benefits of PDA membership

13/08/2021 – Joint statement – Boots & the PDA Union (1 July 2021)

11/08/2021 – PDA LGBT+ Network launch pronoun badges and flyers

10/08/2021 – Pharmacists highlight more unscheduled pharmacy closures

06/08/2021 – PDA Student Reps take part in the PDA’s #GetVaccinated campaign

05/08/2021 – PDA supports student members through misconduct allegations and other challenges

04/08/2021 – When you walk through a storm – do not rely on someone else’s umbrella!


Discover how much you could save with PDA Plus

Whether it’s your weekly grocery shop, reducing your utility bills or a weekend takeaway delivered to your door, PDA Plus has a deal that could save you money.

Discover how much you could save with the help of the Savings Calculator, which you can find at the bottom of the PDA Plus homepage. All you need to do is fill in how much you spend monthly or annually on cinema trips or your gym membership for example, then the savings calculator will generate your annual personal savings total.

To find out more on how you can make the most of your PDA Plus benefits, click on the button below!

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