Inspection outcome: Standards not all met
Last inspection: 20/11/2019Improvement action plan
This is a distance selling pharmacy (www.mynetdoctor.co.uk) linked to an online prescribing service. The pharmacy dispenses private prescriptions only, generated by an online EU based prescriber in Romania. The vast majority of people using the pharmacy are based in the UK. The types of medicines mainly dispensed included: pain relief (codeine phosphate, dihydrocodeine, co-codamol) and sleep aids (zopiclone). The pharmacy is closed to the public and situated in a serviced office block and medicines are delivered to people via courier.
Inspection summary findings
Principle 1. Governance
The pharmacy’s working practices are not always safe. The pharmacy does not manage and identify all the risks associated with the services it provides. People can purchase high-risk medicines on a regular basis without the knowledge of their GP. And vulnerable people might be able to obtain medicines that could cause them harm. The pharmacy uses prescribers who are not based in the UK and it is unable to show that the prescribers are following UK guidance. This means that the pharmacy cannot show that its prescribing service is safe. The pharmacy does not consistently keep and maintain records of clinical decisions. The pharmacy is not able to demonstrate whether the prescribers it works with are covered by appropriate indemnity insurance. It has carried out some risk assessments and audits but do not always follow procedures outlined to manage the risks found.
Principle 2. Staff
The pharmacy has enough team members to manage its workload. They receive the right training so that they know how to provide the pharmacy’s services. They have regular catch-ups and they are asked about how they would like to progress and gain new skills.
Principle 3. Premises
The pharmacy’s website allows people to select the medicine, strength and quantity prior to receiving a consultation. And this is contrary to the GPhC Guidance for registered pharmacies providing pharmacy services at a distance, including the internet. However, the website gives people all the information they need about the prescribers the pharmacy uses. So that people can check who prescribes their medicines. And it displays the required MHRA logo to help people identify that the website can legally sell medicines. The premises are clean and they are secured from unauthorised access. But the room temperature is not monitored and this could make it harder for the pharmacy to ensure that medicines are stored at appropriate temperatures.
Principle 4. Services, including medicines management
The pharmacy does not provide its services safely. It does not make sufficient checks to ensure that all the medication it supplies are appropriate for people. And it supplies some medicines which may not be suitable for supply via remote consultations. The pharmacy mostly supplies medicines without waiting for a response from people’s regular doctor to make sure that their regular doctor agrees to the supply. This is a risk because people’s conditions might not be properly monitored, and their use of the medication may not be appropriately controlled. People’s GPs are not contacted by the prescriber in advance of issuing a prescription. And in the absence of a response from the person’s GP, prescribers are not making a clear record at the time explaining their justification for prescribing. This means that people may receive medicines which are not suitable for them. The pharmacy does not fully review the safety of its prescribing and supply service effectively. Prescribers issue prescriptions by default without waiting to hear from the patient’s GP or without carrying out necessary checks. And this is not in-line with the GMC prescribing guidance. However, the pharmacy obtains its medicines from reputable sources and stores them properly.
Principle 5. Equipment and facilities
The pharmacy largely has the equipment and facilities it needs for its services. It uses its equipment to help protect people’s personal information.
1.38, 160 London Road
What do the inspection outcomes mean?
After an inspection each pharmacy receives one overall outcome. This will be either Standards met or Standards not all met
|The pharmacy has met all the standards for registered pharmacies|
|The pharmacy has not met one or more of the standards for registered pharmacies|
What does 'pharmacy has not met all standards' mean?
When a pharmacy has not met all standards, they are required to complete an improvement action plan, which you can find via a link at the top left of this page. We monitor progress to check the improvements are made and inspect again after six months to make sure the pharmacy is maintaining these improvements. A new report will then be published.