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Pharmacy inspections

Inspection reports and learning from inspections

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Providing a safe haven in the pharmacy

Pharmacy type


Pharmacy context

​The pharmacy is locatedon a main road on the edge of the town centre. Ithas a small retail area and is open 100 hours per week over six days.


Relevant standards

  • 1.8 - Children and vulnerable adults are safeguarded
  • 2.2 - Staff have the appropriate skills, qualifications and competence for their role and the tasks they carry out, or are working under the supervision of another person while they are in training
  • 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

Why this is notable practice

All members of the pharmacy team complete training on domestic abuse as part of their annual training on safeguarding children and vulnerable adults. People who are victims of domestic abuse are provided with a safe haven in the pharmacy. They feel supported and are assisted to obtain the necessary help.

How the pharmacy did this

The pharmacy’s team members had completed safeguarding training. This had helped them to identify victims of domestic abuse. And it had provided them with information on what they needed to do if they came across anyone who had been subjected to domestic abuse. The training included a ‘flow-chart’ to help them through the process. And a list of contact numbers to ensure that team members were able to help the person in the most appropriate way, depending on the nature of the abuse and what the person wanted to do next.

Team members had been able to test the training when a person came into the pharmacy, alleging that those close to her had been abusing her. The pharmacy team knew to offer the person their consultation room as a safe haven, and as the person didn’t speak English, they had called upon a member of staff from the local GP practice to help translate. A member of the pharmacy team built up a rapport with the person, and was eventually able to encourage them to let the team contact the police. The pharmacy received a recommendation for their actions from the local police force.

What difference this made to patients

Victims of domestic abuse can remove themselves from an abusive environment by using the pharmacy as a safe haven. Team members use their training to provide victims with help and support. And they offer further support by referring to the relevant authorities when appropriate.

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