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Pharmacy inspections

Inspection reports and learning from inspections

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Aligning pharmacy services with the needs of the local community

Pharmacy type


Pharmacy context

A busy city centre pharmacy that is open 365 days a year, including late into the evening. The pharmacy dispenses NHS and private prescriptions. It offers a number of services to support people in managing minor illnesses and long-term conditions. It also supplies medicines in multi-compartmental medicine packs to people who live in their own homes and to people in residential care homes.

Relevant standards

  • 2.3 - Staff can comply with their own professional and legal obligations and are empowered to exercise their professional judgement in the best interests of patients and the public
  • 4.1 - The pharmacy services provided are accessible to patients and the public

Why this is notable practice

The pharmacy demonstrates how its services are tailored to the needs of the community and pharmacy team members are committed to providing patient centered services focussing on achieving positive outcomes.

How the pharmacy did this

The pharmacy had its own carpark and there was flat access into the pharmacy. The pharmacy had its own mobility shop attached to the premises and the shop had a lift which provided access to all three levels of the pharmacy if required. Some pharmacy team members spoke a second language. This helped the team communicate with the diverse multicultural population using the pharmacy. The pharmacy made amendments to its services when required and had good risk assessment processes in place for providing services to people that were housebound.

The pharmacy had a royal mail post box in its waiting area. It had taken the decision to apply for this following local residents expressing their disappointment that the removal of a local post box had caused them difficulties in accessing a suitable alternative. The presence of the post box was advertised prominently in the pharmacy window and it was actively used.

After a meeting with the local GP consortium the pharmacy had identified a gap in services for people requiring wrist splints as part of their care plan for treating carpal tunnel syndrome. The pharmacy team had received full training prior to a fitting service being implemented. The pharmacy completed a good number of fittings each month and provided lifestyle advice to people who accessed the service. A number of positive reviews about the service had been left on the internet.

The pharmacy had considered details within the city’s health needs analysis and aligned its services to these needs. The pharmacy had taken on the role of co-ordinating the supply of condoms to organisations across the city following several concerns relating to the availably of resources to support the city’s sexual health services.

The pharmacy had set up a sub-cutaneous fluid service after recognising that equipment could be difficult to obtain at short notice when palliative patients wished to return to their own home to die. The service had clearly had a positive impact on patients and their families through providing the equipment required in a timely manner.

What difference this made to patients

The pharmacy’s extensive services are fully accessible to people. The pharmacy has considered the needs of the local community when aligning its services. The pharmacy empowers other organisations by providing them with the resources to support their own services. This increases access for people requiring specific services.

Highlighted standards

We have identified the standards most likely and least likely to be met in inspections, and highlighted examples of notable practice for each of these standards; to help everyone learn from others and to support continuous improvement:

  1. 1.1 Risk management
  2. 1.2 Reviewing and monitoring the safety of services
  3. 4.2 Safe and effective service delivery
  4. 4.3 Sourcing and safe, secure management of medicines and devices
  5. 2.2 Staff skills and qualifications