With Pharmacy Quality Scheme (PQS) coming into effect from September 1, the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC) has advised pharmacies to follow the quality criterion under the respiratory domain, which focuses on the safe disposal of used inhaler.

As per the criterion, all patient-facing pharmacy staff should be trained on the reasons for safe disposal of inhalers and the adverse environmental effects when inhaler devices are disposed of in domestic waste.

On the day of the declaration, all pharmacies need to evidence that they have had conversations with all patients, their carer or representatives about this subject.

The staff needs to talk to all for whom they have dispensed an inhaler between September 1, 2021 to January 31 ,2022, about the benefits of returning inhaler devices to community pharmacy for safe and environmentally friendly disposal.

It can be supplemented with other communication methods such as leaflets, emails and texts to ensure better understanding amongst inhaler users.

Contractors also need to report the number of conversations they have had while completing their PQS declaration.

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