Following growing concerns about ‘zero reporting’ of coronavirus cases by contractors and pharmacy organisations, it has now been revealved that six instances of coronavirus exposure in pharmacy have now been reported to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).
“For dispensing chemists, there have been 6 notifications of Covid-19 disease (non-fatal) made under the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013 (RIDDOR) to HSE and Local Authorities between 10 April and 25 July 2020,” a parliamentary answer stated.
However, it added: “No assessment has been made of the number of reports received.”
Responding to a written question from Labour’s Lord Kennedy of Southwark, Baroness Stedman-Scott, a minister with the Department of Work and Pensions, provided the latest data, which has come amid growing concerns over pharmacy employers’ inability to report the instances of virus exposure at their workplace.
Meanwhile, the PDA has welcomed the fact that community pharmacy employers have finally started to report cases of workplace exposure to the coronavirus.
“Our first thoughts are to send those six individuals our best wishes for a speedy and full recovery. Whether they are pharmacists or other members of the team, our first concern is for them as human beings,” the PDA said.
“Whilst we welcome the cases now starting to be identified in pharmacy, we reiterate our encouragement for community pharmacy employers who have not yet reported previous instances of likely exposure to coronavirus in their workplace, to do so as soon as possible,” it added.
Earlier in week the PDA wrote to the General Pharmaceutical Council expressing its concerns that community pharmacy employers stood out as the only sector which had failed to report any cases.