Don't "Ask your pharmacist" - he won't be there!
supervision moves a step closer under Health Act 2006
supervision by a responsible pharmacist and pharmacy contracts linked to
OTC sales can both now become law, following the publication of the
Health Act 2006.
with supervision, the Act sets out the core principles that a pharmacist
may not be responsible for more than one premises at a time, and that
the name and registration number of the responsible pharmacist must be
on display. But it is left to the health minister to regulate for
changes to the current supervision requirements, including setting the
terms for any exceptional circumstances to the rule, the qualifications
and experience needed for a pharmacist to be deemed responsible, the
responsible pharmacist's permitted absence from the pharmacy, and
supervision during such absences.
This part of the Act also covers the management and use of controlled drugs, allowing PCTs to nominate or appoint a person to support this aim and to inspect CD stocks and records.
All this comes about because the High Street chemist no longer believes that his talents and skills are being effectively used in safely dispensing medicines to patients. That, he states, can now be safely left to qualified technicians. The very same technicians who have been employed in the dispensaries of the dispensing doctors for many years. Indeed, it was the original Dispensing Doctors Association which fought tooth and nail against pharmacy opposition to ensure that they were able to produce a satisfactory course to train their technicians. At this time, the High Street pharmacy technicians were not expected to be qualified.
will recall that several years ago the National Pharmacy Association
unveiled a still ongoing publicity campaign, "Ask your pharmacist -
you'll be taking good advice". It rather looks as
though in future the British public will be fortunate indeed if they
find a chemist in the High Street when next they call. They
may all be on the golf course or acting as "Bare Foot
needs to take stock over Foster report
to introduce remote supervision in pharmacy have been influenced by a
government drive to cut costs, believes Mark Koziol, Pharmacists Defence
Association (PDA) chairman. “This is why we do not believe the answer
is to have a government-appointed Council,” he has warned ahead of the
PDA’s official response to the Foster report.
PDA’s response, when it is made in full before the November 10
consultation cut-off date, is likely to draw heavily on the need to
maintain a democratically appointed Council (C+D, July 22, p4). Mr
Koziol said: “Where government interest conflicts with the public
interest, the Society could challenge it. But if there is a
government-appointed Council, and a government-friendly Council, then
there’s a danger that it could look after the government interest.”
PDA response is also likely to highlight the need to allow experienced
pharmacists to have input on fitness to practise cases, and its concern
that giving employers statutory powers in the form of revalidation could
further impact on employee rights.