Tuesday 2 April 2019 saw the launch of the UK wide Community Pharmacy Patient Safety Group survey for community pharmacy teams to gather feedback on reporting and learning culture.

The survey is open to all community pharmacy team members, including OTC assistants, dispensers, drivers as well as pharmacists and pharmacy technicians. It is anonymous and aims to capture honest opinions on current patient safety incident reporting and learning processes in place in community pharmacies. The survey also seeks to gather insight on barriers to reporting and learning from incidents and thoughts on safety culture.

Janice Perkins, Chair of the Community Pharmacy Patient Safety Group hosted by the CCA said:

“Patient safety is a fundamental consideration for every member of a pharmacy team.  It is vital that these professionals have the opportunity to share views and knowledge around how current processes or culture can impact safe patient care”.

The survey will allow us to gain a top-line view from across the sector and across all four nations, building on a previous survey carried out in 2016.  We will not be able to identify individuals and your views will not be shared directly with managers or employers”.

Julie Greenfield, Manager of the Pharmacy Forum NI added:

“The Pharmacy Forum NI has been and continues to be, an active participant on the Rebalancing Medicines Legislation and Pharmacy Regulation Programme Board. Recent legislative changes in respect of inadvertent dispensing errors, resultant from the work of the Programme Board and the commitment of colleagues, present an opportunity to take up the challenge of embedding and fully embracing a culture of error reporting. As a profession, we can build on our reputation for delivering the very highest standards of patient care and ensure that safety remains a paramount consideration. 

As with any cultural change, it is an evolving process. Central to success is our ability to gather evidence which is representative of the lived experience of pharmacy professionals in Northern Ireland, to reflect on those experiences and to build for the future. This survey is a vital step on the journey to change.”

Joe Brogan, Head of Pharmacy & Medicines Management at the Health and Social Care Board, echoed these views and encouraged community pharmacy teams to respond to the survey:

“I would strongly encourage all community pharmacy staff to complete this anonymous survey. Following the recent legislative changes around dispensing errors, it is important for pharmacy bodies to understand the impact that these changes have had on the culture of reporting and learning in community pharmacy.  Obtaining a baseline of the current position will allow us to consider any further steps that are required to develop and enhance the safety culture in community pharmacy and help to inform the future development of quality improvement initiatives in community pharmacy.”

The survey takes approximately 10 minutes to complete and will be open until Friday 10 May 2019. The Community Pharmacy Patient Safety Group will share information on the survey’s findings later this year.

Complete the survey now at: www.surveymonkey.com/r/pharmacysafetyculture

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