PAGB works with Government, policy makers, NHS and regulators, as well as with our partners in the health and pharmacy sectors, to drive improvements in health policy regulation. We want to empower more people to self care for self-treatable conditions, reducing pressure on the NHS, and to create a healthy environment for our industry to continue to develop innovative and effective products.
As the trade association for the consumer healthcare industry, PAGB represents our members on working groups and in regular bilateral meetings with those leading policy on medicines and devices regulation, advertising and self care. We work closely with our members to develop an industry-wide position in response to consultations and to define our core policy priorities:
Ensure there are no fewer over-the-counter/self care products available in the UK after the UK leaves the EU and those products are no less safe than they are today
Increase access to effective over-the-counter medicines/products
Publish and implement a national strategy for self care
Empower community pharmacy to facilitate self care
Improve health literacy
Support people to live healthy lifestyles and prevent ill health
We publish PAGB responses to consultations and comment on policy matters on this page and on our news blog.
Covid-19 and consumer healthcare
What is the role of consumer healthcare?
The consumer healthcare industry has an important role to play in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. OTC products enable people to self care when they experience symptoms. Supporting people to self care for non-Covid-19 conditions will also help to reduce pressure on pharmacists and GPs who are needed to deal with this emergency.
What is PAGB doing on Covid-19?
PAGB is working closely with the Department of Health and Social Care and NHS England on how our members can best support the Government as the situation develops. We are monitoring outputs from Government, MHRA and other stakeholders and sharing information with our members via our Covid-19 blog (log-in required) and a daily Covid-19 newsletter to members.
PAGB’s regulatory team is in regular contact with the regulator, MHRA about changes and flexibility relating to existing regulation for OTC medicines and medical devices.
Self care policy – a long term vision for self care
As the NHS enters its eighth decade and embarks on understanding and implementing a new Long Term Plan, PAGB is calling for a national strategy for self care to ensure a sustainable future for our health and care system. The way individuals interact with and access the healthcare system must be modernised, putting a culture of self care at the heart and empowering people to live well.
This strategy must achieve three objectives:
Enhance access to self care
Improve health literacy
Realise the potential of pharmacists
These objectives cannot be met by NHS England in isolation; rather, coordinated action is required, led by the Department of Health and Social Care – with important contributions from Health Education England and Public Health England, as well as NHS England.
In March 2019, PAGB launched a White Paper setting out a series of policies which must be implemented to create and embed a culture of self care, including supporting people to manage their own health, tackling health inequalities and reducing pressures on NHS services.
It follows publication of an interim white paper on the same topic in 2018, and draws on the opportunities and ambitions of the NHS Long Term Plan to align with national policy.
PAGB has identified key policy initiatives which, if introduced as part of a national strategy, would support and empower more people to self care. We look at the potential barriers to implementation and highlight case studies where local innovation has overcome these.