Community Pharmacy Patient Safety Group welcome new Chair

The Community Pharmacy Patient Safety Group are bidding a fond farewell to their current Chair Janice Perkins the former Pharmacy Superintendent at Well Pharmacy. They are however, delighted to announce that Victoria Steele, Superintendent Pharmacist at LloydsPharmacy and current Vice-Chair of the group, will take on the role. The Patient Safety Group are also really pleased that Jackie Giltrow, Clinical Governance Lead at Paydens will take on the role of Vice-Chair of the group.

Janice has played an instrumental role in the creation of the group – which was established in 2015 following an NHS Alert which required all community pharmacy businesses to identify a Medication Safety Officer (MSO). The MSO role is undertaken by the NPA and Numark for independent pharmacies. The Group also includes an AIMp representative and Pharmacy2U.

MSOs, led by Janice, took this requirement further and meet on a monthly basis to share and learn from patient safety incidents and drive improvements in patient care across community pharmacy and more widely. As part of this the group engages with a broad range of stakeholders including the GPhC, RPS, NHS E/I, NHS Digital and the MHRA. The group feeds in annually to the PSNC discussions on the Pharmacy Quality Scheme, has been able to contribute to improving the clarity of patient safety alerts, supporting the process for handling defective medicines and provide input to development of the national incident reporting system.

Since it was established the Patient Safety Group has played a crucial role in driving the patient safety agenda forward.  The group’s work has been wide-ranging – covering issues from; the reduction of Look -Alike-Sound-Alike errors and other medication errors to advocating for an open and transparent approach to reporting, as well as sharing and learning from incidents. The group’s 2021 priorities can be viewed here.

The Patient Safety Group has also developed a wide range of resources to support pharmacy teams during the pandemic and more widely – all of which are open access and can be viewed on the Pharmacy Safety website.

Janice Perkins said:

“I am extremely proud of what the Patient Safety Group has achieved since its inception. We have worked together, tirelessly, to promote patient safety and drive improvements in community pharmacy. Time and time again we have shown the value of sharing and learning across the sector and what can be achieved when organisations take an open, honest and patient centred approach to patient safety.”

“I am delighted to welcome Victoria as my successor – she has already proven herself as an excellent vice-chair to the Group and brings a wealth of leadership and patient safety experience which, I have no doubt, will serve the group extremely well.”

Victoria Steele said

“Janice’s contribution to patient safety in her role as chair of the group has been enormous. She had led the Group with tireless enthusiasm and commitment and her efforts and achievements cannot be overstated.

I am passionate about patient safety and delighted to be taking on the role of Chair of the Patient Safety Group and in doing so, driving further improvements in community pharmacy to ensure patients have the best possible care”.