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Dr Keith
Ridge CBE

Dr Keith Ridge CBE was the Chief Pharmaceutical Officer for England for nearly twenty years until his recent retirement from the NHS and the pharmaceutical register. As the country’s most senior pharmacist, he led the profession, and was the NHS’s and Government’s principal leader on pharmacy and medicines use. Keith was the professional lead on medicines policy, working alongside national policy directors over many years.  He was the clinical lead for the introduction of biosimilars to the NHS, working closely with both patient representatives and policy makers to secure both better access and value.  Keith introduced medicines optimisation into the NHS, whilst also having responsibility for digital medicines and pharmacy educational reform. He led programmes on transforming pharmacy practice in line with the NHS’s Five Year Forward View and Long Term Plan, including the development of clinical practice in community pharmacy and the introduction of clinical pharmacy into general practice. He also played a senior role in the UK’s antimicrobial resistance and influenza programmes. He was the professional lead for both securing the medicines supply chain and delivering the pharmaceutical aspects of the vaccination programme during Covid and has represented Government nationally and internationally. Keith has also led Government reviews on pharmacy professional regulation, education, medication safety and overprescribing. Prior to his national roles he was a Chief Pharmacist at major UK teaching hospitals.

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