The NPA is “greatly concerned” by two reports of burglars targeting CD cabinets within a week, it has told C+D.
The support organisation warned pharmacists to be vigilant following the break-ins, which saw one cabinet “mutilated" by intruders at Milehouse Pharmacy, Plymouth on June 3 and another removed from Imaan Pharmacy in Bradford four days later.
The NPA responded to the news by providing C+D readers with tips on how to increase the security of their CD cabinets (below). The organisation revealed it had received a “number of reports of forced entry into pharmacies resulting in significant damage to the business”.
“In the case of a CD cupboard being ripped off the wall, it will also inconvenience patients and incur additional costs [for the] replacement of the cabinet and stock,” the NPA said.
Imaan Pharmacy manager Amer Ahmed told C+D that, despite the pharmacy recently installing a “really strong” door, the burglars had “smashed" it down in an attempt to access a safe containing methadone, morphine and money.
Police had advised Mr Ahmed that the best deterrent for burglars was installing shutters, which the pharmacy was fitting along with CCTV cameras, he said.
The burglars had left his pharmacy in a “mess” and Mr Ahmed said his main priority had been “getting the pharmacy up and running”.
“Obviously you need to get a new CD cabinet as soon as possible. You need to explain to [methadone patients] what’s happened and get some ordered in,” he added.
Commenting on the incident, community pharmacist Mike Jarrett said anyone that had been the victim of a pharmacy burglary knew that “determined thieves will get what they want”.
“There simply isn’t the police cover to prevent this type of crime. Fort Knox-type security isn’t affordable or practical,” he posted on the C+D website.