Pharmacy workload, wellbeing and patient safety report published

Pharmacy workload, wellbeing and patient safety report published

Pharmacy workload, wellbeing and patient safety report published

The report, the result of a roundtable discussion in May that was hosted by the two organisations. It involved a range of other pharmacy bodies who examined the impact of pharmacy workforce pressures on patient safety, comes as concerns about pharmacies’ workload intensifies.

Report Overview

It states pharmacies in England dispensed 1.075 billion prescription items in 2022-23. Over 60 million more than 2017-18. The number of interactions between pharmacists and patients over that period through nationally commissioned services increased by 80 per cent. Reaching more than 10 million in 2022-23.

It lists a number of risk factors that are associated with poor wellbeing of staff.

Those include longer hours worked by pharmacy teams which, according to a National Pharmacy Association report last year, was a contributory factor in the overall working environment factors that accounted for 41 per cent of errors by staff.

Also it said increased workload was a result of the community pharmacy contractual framework. “demanding more of the pharmacy workforce with little additional support provided by the NHS.” It noted that since 2019, six new clinical services have been commissioned nationally.

The report also said increasing numbers of prescriptions. Leading to more patients turning to pharmacies for their medicines, has ratcheted up the pressure on pharmacies, compounded by a lack of appreciation of the efforts of staff by some of their colleagues and the public. Around 44 per cent of respondents to a workforce wellbeing survey by the RPS and Pharmacist Support said they had experienced physical or verbal abuse in the last six months, mostly from members of the public.

Other risk factors, the report found, included a lack of senior support for younger pharmacists and those with less professional experience, inadequate administrative or teaching time, with many respondents saying they were not offered any protected learning time, as well as staff suffering a poor work-life balance as they were regularly asked to do more because of a lack of staff in the pharmacy.

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Pharmacy workload Pharmacy workload, wellbeing and patient safety report published

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