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Lloydspharmacy: ‘Network' issue resolved after deluge of patient complaints

Lloydspharmacy has apologised after a “network-related issue” meant its pharmacy teams were unable to dispense medication yesterday. 

A spokesperson told C+D: "A solution was deployed overnight, returning the system back to normal today [December 20]".

Disgruntled patients took to social media in their droves yesterday (December 19) to raise concerns over technical issues, which some claimed meant they were unable to pick up their prescriptions.

“During the disruption, our pharmacy teams maintained close contact with their local GP surgeries to ensure that the inconvenience for patients was minimised as far as possible," Lloydspharmacy's spokesperson said.

Teams looked after patients "on a case-by-case basis, prioritising those with urgent medication needs to ensure they could still be met through an alternative provision", they added.

"We apologise to our patients and customers for any delays they may have experienced and thank them for their understanding and patience during this time.”

Responding to patient complaints this morning, Lloydspharmacy also confirmed on Twitter that the “system issue…has since been resolved” and apologised  “for the inconvenience” caused.


Continuing technical headaches


It is not the first time Lloydspharmacy has been beset with technical issues in its branches.

The news follows concerns raised by employees on “the continuing impact” of Lloydspharmacy’s patient medication record (PMR) system, LS Retail, at a quarterly meeting between the company and the Pharmacists’ Defence Association on October 12.

According to minutes of that meeting released earlier this month (December 6), Lloydspharmacy confirmed it was “aware” that further updates to its PMR system had been “disruptive” for its pharmacy teams.

Introduced to replace the existing 20-year-old dispensing system, Compass, in 2020, the system had already experienced teething troubles.

C+D readers claimed last year that it had been rolled out without adequate training for staff and had been plagued with technical issues and bugs.

Read more: Headache for Lloydspharmacy as new PMR system update ‘disruptive’

Earlier this year, patients also raised concerns over the new software’s technical issues.

Lloydspharmacy initially hoped to implement the system across all of its branches in Great Britain by the end of 2021, the multiple previously told C+D.

However, it paused the rollout of LS Retail into any new branches until January 2022 “due to the usual increase of activity in pharmacies over [the festive] period”.

As of July, the system was live in 85% of branches, with Lloydspharmacy aiming “to complete the rollout later this summer”.


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