The British Pharmacopoeia Commission

The British Pharmacopoeia Commission (BPC) is an advisory non-departmental public body, sponsored by the Department of Health and Social Care and is subject to a triennial review to provide assurance to the Department and the public that the BPC’s functions are needed and that it is operating effectively. The most recent review was carried out December 2014 - January 2015, the British Pharmacopoeia Commission: triennial review is publicly available.

The BPC is responsible for:

  • preparing new editions of the British Pharmacopoeia (BP) and British Pharmacopoeia (Veterinary) (BP (Vet))
  • the selection and publication of British Approved Names (BAN)
  • providing clear policies and technical advice for the BP
  • providing advice to the United Kingdom delegation to the European Pharmacopoeia Commission
  • appointing members to expert advisory groups, panels of experts and working parties


Members of the BPC are appointed by the Department of Health and Social Care’s Appointments Team, on behalf of the Secretary of State and the Northern Ireland Minister. Information on current members of the British Pharmacopoeia Commission is included in each edition of the BP. 

If you would like to understand more about the role of the Chair of the BP Commission, read this blog post.


The BPC usually holds three meetings per year. Summary minutes of BPC meetings are publicly available.

Fees and expenses 

Members are entitled to claim fees and expenses in accordance with BP policy.

Code of practice 

All members of the British Pharmacopoeia Commission are required to comply with the BPC code of practice on declaring interests in the pharmaceutical industry and to complete an annual declaration of interests form.

Annual report 

The activities of the BPC are reported annually as part of the medicines advisory bodies annual reports