Year in review

2020 was a challenging year for us all, not least those of us working in community pharmacy. But there is no doubt that community pharmacy has risen to the challenge. It has adapted at every stage to ensure patients continued to receive safe and timely care throughout the pandemic.

As we reflect on the sector’s response to the immense workloads and huge changes to the way we delivered services in 2020, we know that the sector will have an important role to play in the safe roll out of the Covid-19 vaccination.

It’s clear that at each stage of the pandemic, the Community Pharmacy Patient Safety Group’s principles of shared learning have been important, and we must continue to share and learn from each other.

Janice Perkins, Chair of the Patient Safety Group

Our work

In 2020 the group met more frequently than ever before, allowing us to share in real time as the situation evolved. You can find out more about the work we undertook by following the link below.

We developed a suite of materials to support pharmacy teams as they adapted to the pandemic.

Whilst the Covid-19 pandemic has, without doubt, been an important priority in 2020, it has not been our only focus. Sharing and learning is one of our guiding principles and this year we have added a number of lived experiences to our share and learn hub.

In 2020 we also supported the development of several CPPE modules, worked on topics including emollient safety, medicine compliance aids, emergency steroid cards, controlled drugs and medication safety in pregnancy.

We engaged with policy makers to promote patient safety at a national level. We were pleased to support the development of resources to support safety components of the Pharmacy Quality Scheme and engage on the new Patient Safety Incident Management System (which will replace NRLS). This year we’ll continue to work with colleagues at NHS E/I, as well as those at NHS Digital and the MHRA to ensure the patient and community pharmacy voice is heard.

Community pharmacies deliver incredibly safe care. Whilst we are proud of the work we’ve done in 2020, we know there’s more to do. In 2021 we will continue to work with policy makers, pharmacy colleagues and the broader health-care sector.