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Pharmacy inspections

Inspection reports and learning from inspections

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Maintenance of equipment

Pharmacy type

Community

Pharmacy context

The pharmacy is located in a market town opposite a dispensing GP practice. In addition to providing essential NHS services the pharmacy offers Medicines Use Reviews (MURs) and New Medicines Service (NMS). The pharmacy also provides free private health checks consisting of blood pressure and diabetes screening. The pharmacy dispenses between 10,500 and 11,500 NHS items per month including the provision of medicines in community dosage system (CDS) trays to 149 patients. The pharmacy also provides services to three residential care homes. Three patients attended the pharmacy for supervised consumption of methadone.

Relevant standards

  • 5.1 - Equipment and facilities needed to provide pharmacy services are readily available
  • 5.2 - Equipment and facilities are: obtained from a reputable source; safe and fit for purpose; stored securely; safeguarded from unauthorized access; and appropriately maintained

Why this is notable practice

The pharmacy has all the equipment required to deliver the pharmacy services offered and these are appropriately maintained and serviced to ensure that they are safe to use and fit for purpose.

How the pharmacy did this

There was a range of crown stamped measuring cylinders in place for measuring liquid medicines. Measures for sole use with methadone were identified and stored separately. A wide range of clean tablet counters and capsule counters were available; a separate triangle for use with methotrexate tablets was identified. The glucometer and blood pressure machine had been annotated with stickers which indicated when they had been put into use and when they were due for routine replacement. Weekly calibration checks of the glucometer were completed and a written record of these checks was maintained. Equipment stored in the consultation room to support the delivery of the diabetes screening service was up to date. Electrical safety testing had been completed; stickers on equipment indicated when this was due again. Fridge temperatures were recorded and records indicated that cold chain medicines were stored between 2°C and 8°C.

What difference this made to patients

Pharmacy equipment used to deliver services to patients is readily available and properly maintained so that they are receiving accurate screening results and uncontaminated medication.

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