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Chamber and committees

Motion ref. S5M-23654

Pharmacists' Mental Health and Wellbeing

Submitted by: Alison Johnstone, Lothian, Scottish Green Party.
Date lodged: Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Supported by: Jeremy Balfour, Sarah Boyack, Alexander Burnett, Donald Cameron, Alex Cole-Hamilton, John Finnie, Rhoda Grant, Monica Lennon, Rona Mackay, Liam McArthur, Mark McDonald, Pauline McNeill, Colin Smyth, David Stewart, Andy Wightman, Beatrice Wishart

That the Parliament notes the publication of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society’s second annual survey on pharmacists’ mental health and wellbeing, demonstrating the impact of COVID-19 and workplace pressures on pharmacists; expresses its concern that 89% of pharmacists surveyed scored as being at high risk of burnout; expresses further concern that 72% of respondents said their work had negatively affected their mental health and wellbeing, with reasons given including increased demand, inadequate staffing, long hours and a lack of breaks and time off; acknowledges that the 2019 survey shows that these issues pre-existed the pandemic; understands that, while over half of employers provide mental health and wellbeing support, 44% of pharmacists reported feeling uncomfortable accessing it due to issues around confidentiality and trust, including fear of stigma; agrees that support must be made available for those who need it, while problems should be prevented from developing by tackling some of the root causes of poor mental health and wellbeing in the workplace; further agrees that having well-staffed and properly resourced pharmacy services will be essential in tackling these root causes, and calls for support that has been made available to pharmacists during the pandemic, such as flexible opening hours and access to NHS wellbeing services, to be offered on a permanent basis.