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Pharmacy inspections

Inspection reports and learning from inspections

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Providing team members with resources to support effective person-centred care.

Pharmacy type


Pharmacy context

The pharmacy is in a medical centre in a town withhigh rates of social deprivation. Its main services include dispensing NHSprescriptions and providing advice and support to people. 

Relevant standards

  • 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
  • 2.4 - There is a culture of openness, honesty and learning
  • 4.1 - The pharmacy services provided are accessible to patients and the public
  • 5.1 - Equipment and facilities needed to provide pharmacy services are readily available

Why this is notable practice

Pharmacy team members have immediate access to current resources to support them in having meaningful interactions with people using the pharmacy’s services. The resource library supports team members in working safely and supports a culture of ongoing learning.

How the pharmacy did this

The responsible pharmacist (RP) had created a resource library for the pharmacy team. This consisted of clearly labelled files stored neatly in a designated area of the dispensary and informative internet pages had been saved as favourites on the computer in the consultation room. The library provided a large variety of resources to support the team in delivering services safely and effectively. The RP was committed to reviewing and updating the information within the files to ensure it was current.

Information included patient safety resources such as national and local learning from adverse events, signposting information, medicine supply notifications, serious shortage protocols, HRT pre-payment certificate information and safeguarding information. Information to support individual services were clearly identifiable and held with copies of the relevant SOP and best practice guide for team members to refer to when delivering the service. Team members were encouraged to use the library to keep their knowledge and skills up to date. And they suggested topics to be added to the library regularly.

Team members demonstrated how they used the resource library in practice. For example, when a prescriber rang to query the availability of a medicine the team member was able to refer to information within a supply notification to support the prescriber in choosing a suitable alternative. The RP demonstrated how the palliative care guide supported in providing people with correct information about where they could have a prescription dispensed out-of-hours within the town. Information on the pharmacy’s computer was from trusted sources. And team members used this as an interactive tool during consultations. For example, when providing healthy lifestyle support and advice during NHS hypertension case-finding service consultations. Information was printed and given to people upon request. People using the pharmacy’s services often returned to inform team members of the outcome following the support they had offered.

What difference this made to patients

People using the pharmacy benefit from up to date and supportive information to help them manage their medicines and their health. They are supported by team members who are enthusiastic in their roles and keep their knowledge and skills up to date.

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