Women in leadership

The Company Chemists’ Association (CCA) is a proud partner of NHS England’s Inclusive Pharmacy Practice (IPP) Programme. NHSE’s second IPP bulletin focuses on the work the sector is undertaking to improve diversity across senior leadership.

A recent snapshot1 of the pharmacy workforce shows that 61.3% of all pharmacists and 85.3% of all pharmacy technicians identify as female in England. However, women remain underrepresented in senior positions, with research2 showing that just 36%of senior pharmacy leaders are women2. Multiple and complex factors are at play. The lack of female representation at the top can make women hesitant to reach for these positions, perpetuating the cycle.

The CCA’s members are committed to reflecting gender diversity across all levels of the community pharmacy workforce, from the dispensary to the head office. To encourage the next generation of women entering the sector, it is important to champion the female role models shaping our sector.

As part of the IPP bulletin, the CCA interviewed two female Superintendent Pharmacists at our member organisations. Claire Nevinson (Boots UK) and Victoria Steele (LloydsPharmacy) talk to us about their experiences as female leaders in the profession, encouraging allyship in pharmacy, and fostering greater diversity at the top.

There is a role for everyone to advocate for female leadership in community pharmacy. Male allies are important to advancing gender equity in community pharmacy. Women pharmacists make incredible leaders, and we want to see more of them. We must champion and support female pharmacy professionals to break barriers in the sector, for the betterment of community pharmacy.”

Malcolm Harrison, chief executive of the Company Chemists’ Association


  1. General Pharmaceutical Council (2022). GPhC registers data. Available online here.
  2. Naylor M, Pontefract S and Batchelor H (2018). Gender-balance in pharmacy: a review of the current landscape. Birmingham University.

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