The NPA’s representative for Scotland has branded a “spate of break-ins” across the country “troubling”.
Prescription medication and £200 in cash were stolen from a Lloydspharmacy on North Road in Bellshill on January 10 by a thief who threatened counter staff with a large kitchen knife, Police Scotland said last week.
The robbery occurred five days after a “significant quantity” of prescription medication was taken from Lindsay & Gilmour Pharmacy in Forth and seven days after controlled drugs were stolen from a Lloydspharmacy in West Kilbride, according to Police Scotland.
The NPA’s Scotland representation manager Janice Oman told C+D she was concerned by these reports and advised contractors to carry out a risk assessment of their pharmacy at least once a year, because the type of crime in an area could change over time.
“If burglary is common in your area, you might want to invest in security lighting, window locks and so on. It could be wise for more than one staff member to open and close the pharmacy,” she said.
The British Retail Consortium (BRC) said the impact of theft on British retailers was at its “highest level in a decade”, as it published its annual retail crime survey on Tuesday.
The average value of an in-store theft increased by 36 per cent to £241, which pushed the total cost of retail crime across the UK to more than £600 million in 2013-14, the BRC said. It estimated that 3 million thefts occurred over this period, while there were 32 reported incidents of violence and abuse per 1,000 employees.
Neither Police Scotland nor the BRC were able to comment on whether shops or pharmacies were more likely to suffer from theft in January than in other months.
Find tips for protecting your pharmacy with C+D's crime special.