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Scottish RPS Board candidate — Jonathan Burton



Why did you stand for election?
Not for the tea & biscuits. I work as a community pharmacist and I would bring my experience as a patient-facing practitioner to the Board table. I think it’s vital that there are pharmacists around the Board table who practise at the coal face. Dealing directly with patients & the public brings joys, worries and frustrations, and it’s important that RPS policy reflects the challenges faced by the majority of the profession, and our hopes & aspirations too.

I’ve been fortunate to be able to train & now practise as a prescriber and undergo clinical assessment skills training. I am determined to increase access for community pharmacists in particular to these wonderful opportunities and feel the RPS in Scotland can influence this.

In practice I have designed and contributed to the development of the ‘Pharmacy First’ concept in my local NHS Health Board (Forth Valley), and shared details of my own clinic work (common clinical conditions – assessment & treatment) with many colleagues across Scotland. If I say I believe in an idea or way of practicing then I absolutely try to make it happen! Words have to be backed up with actions.

I fully support and am committed to the RPS Faculty programme & have submitted my portfolio twice, helping others with theirs also. There is so much work still to do to get more pharmacists involved though. I have previously served on the Scottish Board and built a reputation for being a hard worker who is committed to the Society and the profession in Scotland, after a short break from the Board I’d like to get stuck in again & help.

What do you want to change if elected?
My main priority would be to ensure as much as possible that the issues being discussed by the Board and actioned by the RPS in Scotland are those which are most relevant to the professional lives of pharmacists in Scotland.

To be brutally honest, when I look back at the period I last spent on the Board (2012-16), I’m not sure we nailed this and I’m still not convinced it’s been addressed fully. We need to be committed to representing the entire membership and developing a clear plan for communicating with said membership and I feel I can help lead this.

My second priority area would be to ensure the Society really delivers more value for money in terms of helping pharmacists with their continuing professional & personal development. I would be focusing on the Foundation and Faculty programmes, the PJ and Clinical Pharmacist publications, and also our local events & engagement strategy as key strands of our professional development offering. For each we need to ask: Is it working for members, and, if not, what do we practically do about that?

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