PDA members favour independent scrutiny of the pharmacy regulator on their EDI strategy

The PDA recently surveyed members about the GPhC (General Pharmaceutical Council)’s track record on Equality, Diversity and Inclusivity (EDI) as part of their response to the regulator’s current consultation; Delivering equality, improving diversity and fostering inclusion.

Tue 22nd June 2021 The PDA

In the survey, PDA members have strongly indicated* that they expect the GPhC to set and publish measurable targets (for example ethnicity pay gap reporting and publishing anonymous data about panel members’ diversity), alongside calling for the policy to be subject to scrutiny by independent external stakeholders, with a remit to regularly monitor and publish reports on progress.

The GPhC’s strategy outlines 3 overarching themes:

Theme 1: To make regulatory decisions that are demonstrably fair, lawful, and so free from discrimination and bias.

Theme 2: To use our standards to proactively help tackle discrimination in all pharmacy settings and to make sure everyone can access person-centred care, fostering equality of health outcomes.

Theme 3: To lead by example and demonstrate best practice within our organisation, holding ourselves to the same high standards we expect of others.

Each theme has several objectives and proposed outcomes, but they do not detail any tangible measurable outcomes or suggest that they will be subject to independent monitoring and assurance.

Alison Jones, Director of Stakeholder Engagement at the PDA said, “Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) is a core part of what we do at the PDA. From our advice line and casework, we know that too often issues faced by pharmacists in their workplace are caused by discrimination against them due to their race, gender, disability, or sexual identity.

It is vitally important that the GPhC has robust EDI policies in place to provide confidence to registrants that their rights are protected, that any decisions made are done so fairly and without discrimination, and that the organisation holds itself accountable to the same high standards that it expects of others.

As we developed our response to this important consultation, we wanted to hear from members what they thought was important to give them confidence and assurance in their regulator’s EDI policies. Clearly, having clear measurable goals and independent scrutiny is a top priority for them.”

The GPhC’s consultation is open until 12 July 2021. The PDA encourages anyone that has yet to provide their feedback to do so. Further information is available here.

The PDA will publish its full response to the consultation shortly, if you wish to contact the policy team, please email policy@the-pda.org.

*75% of PDA members surveyed thought that GPhC should set and publish measurable targets, for example compiling and publishing an ethnicity pay gap report and an action plan to reduce any pay gap (for GPhC employees), publishing anonymous data about panel members’ diversity. 

82% of members surveyed said that the GPhC’s EDI policy should be subject to scrutiny by independent external stakeholders with a remit to regularly monitor and publish reports on progress?

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