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Pharmacy inspections

Inspection reports and learning from inspections

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Weaknesses in monitoring and review mechanisms and poor knowledge of safeguarding

Pharmacy type


Pharmacy context

The pharmacy is located on a main road in a village. It dispenses approximately 2500 NHS prescription items and two private prescriptions per month.In addition to NHS essential services, the pharmacy offers head lice detection and treatment and supervised consumption.

Relevant standards

  • 1.1 - The risks associated with providing pharmacy services are identified and managed
  • 1.2 - The safety and quality of pharmacy services are regularly reviewed and monitored
  • 1.8 - Children and vulnerable adults are safeguarded

Why this is poor practice

The pharmacy team are not working in accordance with their Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) and they have not read or signed these. Staff are unclear about the pharmacy’s operating procedures and current practice, for example, for safeguarding vulnerable people.

What the shortcomings are

The pharmacy team, including the Responsible Pharmacist (RP) were unable to identify signs of abuse and neglect involving vulnerable people and did know how to deal with a safeguarding concern, such as who to consult for advice or make a referral to and what records should be kept.

What improvements are required

The pharmacy should ensure their staff have read, understand and operate in line with its current and documented procedures. The team, including pharmacists, require training on safeguarding vulnerable people. They should know the process to take in the event of a concern. Without this, there is a risk that critical situations may not be dealt with quickly or referred to the appropriate authorities.

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