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Community pharmacy in South East London fails to meet all GPhC standards


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Blackwells Chemist, a community pharmacy in South East London did not meet all the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) standards. 

The pharmacy was inspected on Thursday (01 June) and it was found it did not keep all its records up to date and accurate, particularly its responsible pharmacist records. Investigation report stated that the principle of Governance and principle of Services, including medicines management was ‘not met at all’. 

Under the principle Governance, the report stated: “The pharmacy generally manages the risks associated with its services adequately. People using the pharmacy can provide feedback or raise concerns. And staff generally protect people’s personal information well. Team members know what to do to help protect the welfare of a vulnerable person. The pharmacy has written procedures, but these are not easily accessible to team members to refer to. And they are not regularly updated. So, they may be less useful to staff, and may not reflect current best practice.”

In the inspection it was found that the pharmacy does not always store its medicines properly. It cannot show that it stores all its medicines requiring cold storage at the appropriate temperatures. 

“There is some evidence that the temperatures have gone outside of this range. The pharmacy generally stores its other medicines properly. Team members take the right action in response to safety alerts. And the pharmacy’s services are accessible to people. The pharmacy is not up to date with date-checking its stock, and this could increase the chance that people get medicines that are not suitable to use,” the report said.  

The pharmacy mainly offers NHS services such as dispensing prescriptions. It delivers medicines to a small number of people in their own homes. And it dispenses medicines in multi-compartment compliance packs to some people who need this additional level of support. It provides a travel vaccination service under patient group directions.

When a pharmacy has not met all GPhC standards, they are required to complete an improvement action plan. GPhC monitors progress to check the improvements are made and inspect again after six months to make sure the pharmacy is maintaining these improvements. 



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