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Pharmacy inspections

Inspection reports and learning from inspections

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Preparing well before launching a COVID-19 vaccination service.

Pharmacy type


Pharmacy context


Relevant standards

  • 4.2 - Pharmacy services are managed and delivered safely and effectively

Why this is notable practice

The pharmacy learns from the experiences of other COVID-19 vaccination sites and is well prepared for the launch of its vaccination service. It anticipates that on the first two days of the service it may need to provide fewer vaccinations to give team members enough time to become clear about their roles and responsibilities. And to become proficient in the procedures they should follow. This is to ensure that in the days and weeks following the pharmacy can deliver the service as safely and efficiently as possible.

How the pharmacy did this

The pharmacy had listened to the experiences of others and had booked in fewer vaccination slots on the first two days to ensure that team members had enough time to learn their roles and responsibilities and have confidence in what they had to do. Before launching the service, the pharmacy had ensured that all team members had been thoroughly trained. And it had ensured that they had the information they needed to deliver the service efficiently. The supervising pharmacist remained supernumerary on the first two days of the service, so they were available to observe what team members were doing and answer their questions. And they held a meeting each day to review procedures and consolidate the team’s understanding of its responsibilities.

People arriving at the pharmacy for their vaccination were met by a ‘greeter’ who had been provided with a script to help them explain the process. The person was then directed to a ‘record keeper’. The pharmacy had supplied the greeter and record keeper with headsets so that they could manage the flow of people effectively. The record keeper had been provided with log-in details in advance and a patient list showing people’s names, dates of birth and NHS numbers to speed up the log-in process. The pharmacy had provided the record keeper with a script to help with the wording to use when asking for people’s details. And with how to ask people if they would mind removing their jackets, ready for vaccination. They had patient information leaflets ready to give to the person, along with a pre-populated vaccine record card. The vaccination card had been filled in earlier that day with the day’s date and the name of the vaccine. The record keeper had then advised people to hand the record card to the vaccinator who would complete it with the patient’s details and vaccine batch number after vaccination. The vaccinator was a health care professional able to answer any further queries people may have prior to vaccination.

What difference this made to patients

People experience a safe and efficient vaccination service. They can ask questions and are provided with the information they need by a well-trained team.

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