BOPA is the British Oncology Pharmacy Association. It was founded in the autumn of 1996 and grew out of the United Kingdom Clinical Phrmacy Associaition (UKCPA).
The stated purpose of BOPA, which is a registered charity, is "to promote excellence in the pharmaceutical care of patients with cancer through education, communication, research and innovation by an alliance of hospital, community and academic pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, those in the pharmaceutical industry and other healthcare professionals".
It works to achieve these ends by a number of routes. To date, the most prominent of these has been education in the form of study days and residential symposia. The latter has now become an annual event and is extremely well attended by both representatives of our 500 strong individual members and by representatives of the pharmaceutical industry including the 40 or so companies who are corporate members.
The Association's newsletter has been an increasingly important aspect of BOPA, increasing in both quality, regularity and size under its previous and current editors and it is hoped that this website will provide another vital resource for our members, allowing them to keep in touch with what's happening in BOPA and in oncology generally as well as facilitating communication between members, allowing the collective skills and knowledge of the membership to be utilised to the benefit of patients.
Those of us already involved in any aspect of oncology pharmacy know that although it is a relatively young specialism, it is a very fast developing one that looks certain to increase in importance given the high priority of cancer on the agenda of both government and health authorities.
The BOPA committee, as elected representatives of the membership, are aware that this period of rapid development poses enormous challenges. These are of two main types; ensuring that there is a sufficient supply of adequately trained staff of an acceptable standard; and making sure that pharmacy issues are considered by those planning and organising cancer services at regional and local levels. Over the next year or two, BOPA will be working hard to improve, directly and indirectly, the provision of education and training to oncology pharmacy staff, to develop standards of practice and to ensure that oncology pharmacy is well represented in all relevant situations.
If you are involved in, or interested in the pharmaceutical aspects of cancer treatment we hope that you will want to join BOPA, which will give you access to the whole of this website along with the other benefits of membership. If you would like to join BOPA please click here.