In its latest security advice to pharmacies, the Metropolitan Police has asked contactors not to divulge when deliveries are expected and place temporary barriers on open plan counters to restrict access.
The advice also include removing identification lanyards when leaving the premises and having a minimum of two members if staff at opening and closing times.
The latest guidelines offers advice on security of premises, opening and closing times, secure storage, customers and deliveries, and ensuring any incidents are reported to the police.
The National Business Crime Centre has said that it is important that the pharmacist or his staff do not inadvertently draw attention to the fact that additional quantities of controlled drugs are being kept on the premises, or divulge when deliveries are expected.
“Ensure any drugs or high-risk medication is locked in a security rated safe which is either bolted to the floor or secured to the wall. If there is not sufficient storage space within the safe, any excess controlled drugs should be kept in locked room,” the advice reads.
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Robbie Turner, Director of Pharmacy and Member Experience at the RPS, said: “We’ve welcomed some really positive discussions with the police on safety and security of pharmacy teams and premises across GB during Covid-19.
“We know this is an issue they’re taking seriously and this new advice highlights how safety of staff is paramount. They’ve committed to working with us and across the profession to ensure pharmacy teams get the support they need.”
The police have also advised pharmacy owners to restrict the number of customers they allow into their premises and to let a limited number of customers in at any given time to maintain social distancing and protect staff.
“The safety and wellbeing of staff is paramount. Violence or abuse against staff is never acceptable and should not be tolerated. If you’ve witnessed, or have been the victim of a crime please report it, as it will help Police to bring the offender to justice, prevent further crime and keep people safe,” the Met said.
The latest guidelines follow a call this week from national pharmacy organisations asking the police to engage with and support pharmacy staff on the frontline.