The company emailed its members yesterday (May 10) informing them that Bristol-based Red Box Healthcare Ltd – trading as Pharmacy PGD – is "no longer issuing certificates of PGD service provision", because it has closed for "reasons beyond our control".
PGD certificates previously issued by the company ceased to be valid from today (May 11), it said.
“Pharmacists who continue to use our PGDs after May 10 could be contravening General Pharmaceutical Council regulations,” said the company, which describes itself on its website as "the largest provider of PGDs for community pharmacies in the UK".
The company has trained 2,000 community pharmacists for "a wide range of PGDs", it said on its website.
It apologises “unreservedly” for the situation it has put these pharmacists in, it said yesterday.
“We understand our closure will be of significant inconvenience to our members and their customers,” it added.
It added that the practical vaccine training it provided remains valid for one year after it was taken, but stressed it cannot be used with its vaccine PGDs.
“Patients will not be impressed”
Nat Mitchell, pharmacist director of JWW Allison and Sons pharmacy in Cumbria, said he will be forced to cancel or reschedule antimalarial consultation appointments following the unexpected closure of Pharmacy PGD.
“We have used the company for a while now, mostly for their antimalarial PGDs,” he told C+D. “All of my previous dealings with the company have been friendly and professional, so it's a shame that this has happened.”
Mr Mitchell said he did not feel the lack of notice for withdrawing the PGD service was good enough.
“Patients will not be impressed by this at all,” he added.
Pharmacy PGD had not responded to C+D’s request for comment at time of going to press.