PDA ‘Safer Pharmacies Charter’ garners GPhC support

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PDA ‘Safer Pharmacies Charter’ garners GPhC support

The GPhC has responded to the publication of the Pharmacists’ Defence Association’s (PDA) Safer Pharmacies Charter.

Duncan Rudkin, chief executive, said: “We fully share the PDA’s commitment to continuing to improve the safety and effectiveness of the care that people using pharmacy services receive. We are keen to discuss with the PDA how we can work with them and other organisations across pharmacy to achieve these shared aims for pharmacy now and in the future.”

The key points set out in the PDA’s charter reflect a number of the standards that the regulator has set for registered pharmacies and pharmacy professionals, he said. These include making sure there are enough staff, suitably qualified and skilled, for the safe and effective provision of the pharmacy services provided, that staff can comply

with their own professional and legal obligations, and that staff are empowered to raise concerns.

“The PDA has an important role to play in ... advocating on [members’] behalf to their employers in relation to their working conditions. [Pharmacy bodies] each have different remits, but can all play a part to support the professionalism of pharmacists and pharmacy technicians, and to enable the continuous improvement of the care they provide to patients and the public,” said Rudkin. The PDA launched a ‘Safer Pharmacies

Charter’ in December at an event at the House of Commons attended by sector leaders, MPs and shadow health secretary Jonathan Ashworth MP. It defines seven basic standards that should underpin safe practice whenever and wherever pharmacy work is carried out, says the PDA.

PDA chairman Mark Koziol believes the charter is necessary because of the growing pressures pharmacists operate under. “While numbers of prescriptions are growing, the resources [pharmacists] work with are getting smaller and smaller,” he said. “Staffing levels are being reduced, trained staff removed to cover other parts of the pharmacy, and targets to sell items or hit other commercial imperatives are forcibly imposed. All this leads to a diminution of patient safety.”

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