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DH will consult public on changes to pharmacy supervision law

A Department of Health (DH) programme board will hold a public consultation on pharmacy supervision "before it settles on a firm set of proposals", the government has told C+D.

The DH programme board responsible for "rebalancing" medicines legislation and pharmacy regulation "will consult...a range of pharmacy stakeholders, including patients and the public" before submitting changes to pharmacy supervision legislation, it confirmed to C+D yesterday (September 19).

C+D exclusively revealed last week that detailed proposals for pharmacy technicians to be handed legal responsibility for supervising the supply of prescription-only medicines (POMs) have been submitted to the DH programme board.

A working group, established by the UK’s four chief pharmaceutical officers, also suggested amending legislation to allow a pharmacy technician to, in the pharmacist’s absence, undertake the “supervision role” of determining when medicine supplies can go ahead and “overseeing the activities of other, non-regulated, pharmacy staff”, according to confidential documents seen by C+D.

The DH told C+D yesterday that the programme board “is continuing to consider the role of registered pharmacy technicians”.

When will ministers get involved?

On Monday (September 18), C+D reported that the DH failed to confirm whether Jeremy Hunt knew about pharmacy supervision proposals, a month after he tried to “reassure” a pharmacist on the subject.

Speaking to C+D yesterday, a DH spokesperson stressed that only after a public consultation has been held “will proposals be submitted to ministers for consideration”.

Read the DH’s original response to the pharmacy supervision proposals here.

Do you think pharmacy technicians should be allowed to supervise medicines supply?

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