As people start to think about standing for election to the RPS National Pharmacy Board, it’s worth bearing in mind that we are talking about passionate pharmacists who want to make a positive difference to the profession.
All will have ideas about how and what should be a priority for RPS, what policies would have the greatest impact and what areas should be the focus. Artificial intelligence, personalised treatments, changes in the NHS and changes in law are all likely to be in the mix, and all of us will have an opinion about what to prioritise.
This year, we want to encourage everyone to be part of our mission, to put pharmacy on the forefront of healthcare.
We want to encourage people to lend their vote to the candidate they believe in.
We’re ramping up our digital engagement with podcasts from RPS Country directors – giving their view about the most important challenges to the profession. We have RPS board members talking about their experience on video, and we are running a campaign across social media and our website to make sure everyone has an opportunity to participate in debate.
We have learned from previous experience about online debates, or ‘hustings’. What we saw was either low participation, (webinar, RPS Networks), or quite high participation, but frankly a chaotic and unpleasant experience. (Tweetchat, Telegram).
This year we are leaving it up to you to engage with candidates on the forum, as you choose. That could be PJ, or pharmaceuticaljournal.com, or any number of social media platforms, Whatsapp, Instagram or Twitter. Or you may see a candidate at a local event or even your place of work.
We’re not forcing anyone to use a platform or channel that you are neither familiar nor comfortable with, although the advice to RPS Board candidates is to reach out to voters however and wherever you can.
For the rest of us not ready to become a board candidate but keen to get involved with the election… how you participate will be a personal choice. However, our advice would be to get behind the candidate you believe in, support them and share the reasons why you think your colleagues and other pharmacists should support them too.
Standing or not, it’s your chance to be part of a positive change for pharmacy.
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