Pharmacy bodies publish resilience guidance to support pharmacy teams

Pharmacy bodies publish resilience guidance to support pharmacy teams

March 25, 2020

PSNC, working closely with NPA, CCA and AIM, has published guidance to help support and maintain the community pharmacy network during the response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

These are unprecedented times and exceptional measures may be required to ensure patient and public safety, as well as the safety and welfare of the pharmacy team. The joint guidance therefore considers the support needed for pharmacy staff to stay well at work, in the context of opening hours, during what are likely to be increasingly difficult and stressful times.

The guidance addresses three aspects of an NHS pharmacy’s terms of service – opening hours, responsible pharmacist and unplanned (emergency) closures – with advice given on how best to address each going forwards.

Resilience Guidance – Part 1a: Opening Hours

Resilience Guidance – Part 1b: Opening Hours (shorter version)

Resilience Guidance – Part 2: Responsible Pharmacist (withdrawn)

Resilience Guidance – Part 3: Emergency Closure

Emergency Closure Form (Word version)

Contractors are advised to review this guidance alongside the updated COVID-19 community pharmacy SOP (revised 22nd March 2020). Particular attention should be paid to the section on pharmacy preparation for incident management.

Other useful resources include PSNC’s COVID-19 business continuity page and the NPA’s business continuity guidance.

Pharmacy Operational Status Reporting

Pinnacle Health, now operating as part of the EMIS group, has been working closely with PSNC over the last week to develop a reporting template allowing pharmacies to record their operational status. This will allow pharmacies to record the level at which they are operating against a Red, Amber, Green traffic light system and provide feedback to LPC leads and Head Offices about the challenges they are facing. For sites recording an Amber status, the template allows a pharmacy to record and feedback details of their operational challenges and also provide information on planned closures, in line with the revised COVID-19 SOP released by NHS England and NHS Improvement (NHSE&I) over the weekend.

For pharmacies faced with no alternative other than to close, i.e. recording a RED status, the template supports recording of actions taken in line with the requirements of Annex 14 of the NHSE&I pharmacy manual, and details of the closure itself. All information recorded and saved for a RED status will prepopulate a form that can be printed when data is saved. The form can be sent to the regional NHSE&I office to inform them of the closure

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