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Shall I report her to the GphC?

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  • Shall I report her to the GphC?

    Hi all,

    I am currently a pre-reg pharmacist which moved pharmacies a few weeks ago. During my time there, I got quite close to one of dispensers and she shared some information with me before things got sour between us and I am no longer seeing her. She said to me she occasionally stole medicines from the pharmacy. She mentioned antibiotics, diazepam. This pharmacy I worked in was shambolic. Their CD register was never balanced and this girl told me she "took advantage of that", which I assume meant she stole CD's? I want to report her but I am worried it will seem I am trying to get back at her or something. I feel a responsibility to report it. My problem is other than what she said, I have no hard proof as in texts from her to me etc. So it would be my word against her type thing.

    Also, that whole pharmacy should be reported in my opinion as:

    1- Pharmacist rarely come on time and they have non-pharmacist staff hand out medicines and sell P medicines without the RP coming in and signing in.
    2- They get staff to give out methadone to addicts without RP being present in the morning to supervise.
    3- The pharmacist get staff to take pictures of Rx and labels etc and post them on watsapp and they give the okay for the products to be dispensed over watsapp without them actually being there!

    And there is even more. Like I said this place is shambles and I am giving serious thought to reporting them. Another problem I have is that a friend of mine works there currently and I don't want to jeopardise his job there.

  • #2
    1. Is this a branch of a multiple? Guessing it is as you have moved branches?
    2. Your friend? Assume he is not a pharmacist? What is his job title? How long has he been there?

    Your primary concern should always be the welfare of the patients. If your friend is not the pharmacist, and if he has been there a while, it would be pertinent to assume that he has been formally trained and his roles defined? Is he party to the bad practice that you have highlighted? If so, his situation, from your perspective, should be untenable.

    Comment


    • #3
      First things first ... but this could be a whistleblowing issue. Have you tried to raise this internally?

      Comment


      • #4
        Time the Inspector called. Not sure if the GPhc even has them now.
        johnep

        Comment


        • #5
          You have stated that you have no tangible or written evidence concerning the dispenser so make sure this is not a "sting", i.e. was she telling the truth when she told you that she had stolen. Best way forward, before you involve GPhC is to inform the next one up in the chain of command. If not successful secure other employment, leave and then report to GPhC. As you say that you were "close" to the dispenser, leave her out of it. Hell hath no Fury........etc.

          Comment


          • #6
            As long as you are there and this practice is continuing unreported you are essentially complicit in it.

            The business should have a clear written whistleblowing policy (most multiples have a poster in the staff area)

            The superintendent will thank you in the end for raising this with them directly as it is as much their neck on the line as anybody else.

            Blow the whistle ASAP and if that's not an option (may be a small multiple) report to the GPhC. If it comes out without you reporting it could affect your chances of joining the register.
            I remember when a blog was an individual boot.

            Comment


            • #7
              If it is a large company I would be wary of annonymous whistleblowing type systems that exist. They don't have a great track record for change other than SOME low level theft, financial irregularity and sexual harassment (and even then it isn't good).

              I would write a letter to head office. I'm aware that you will get people who will say no, no, no, this is the worst thing you can do.

              The balance of evidence in employment law is based on the Burchell test. So to make comparisons it isn't 95% confidence like say criminal law (one of the flaws is beyond reasonable doubt isn't defined in any sensible way so there is no number), 50% for civil cases (on the balance of probabilities) and 33% (reasonable belief) for Burchell test. The issue with theft is having dealt with quite a few it's not that you won't be believed, it's that you need something more specific.

              Miss out the alleged thefts unless there's something from a few weeks ago that was specific - oh I stole xxxx this week. Otherwise nothing specific enough or recent enough.

              Inform GPhC and write to head office with points 1-3 simultaneously. Also bear in mind what Mutley has said.

              Comment


              • #8
                If you don't feel comfortable with raising this internally (i.e. if the employer is complicit or you have tried and got nowhere etc) then the the process is quite clear ... you will need to report this to a prescribed body. In this case it is the GPhC or the ICO. I'll see if I can find the link. But first, I urge you to get the whistleblowing policy of the company first and read through it.

                There is a clear potential for patient safety to be at risk - from the dispenser in question and even from some of the processes you have described that the pharmacy is using. There is also information governance issues that may need to be raised - Whatsapp should never be used for patient sensitive information. Whistleblowers are legally protected although having seen how the NHS has dealt with some of them in the past you would have every right to think otherwise.

                But before you do anything ... get some advice from the PDA or another similar body and not rely only on the advice you get here!

                Feel free to IM me if you want to discuss this anonymously.

                Found the link: https://www.gov.uk/whistleblowing/wh...what-to-expect

                Information from the ICO: https://ico.org.uk/concerns/handling/​​​​​​​

                Comment


                • #9
                  The PDA is an option, but as one of the country's least effective trades unions, I wouldn't put much stock unless you've had some good stories from the local offices/rep. Plenty of other unions out there. You're talking to an ex shop steward here.

                  Solicitors like Leigh Day specialise in Whistleblowing. I would recommend them for information. It's not been my experience to be like it's posted here at all. Whistleblowing policies don't really work in my experience.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Just realised something ... you are no longer an employee are you? May make things a little more difficult in terms of protection. Get more advice!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      You certainly need a) to take advice and b) be cautious. You’re making some pretty serious allegations here. First of all, you say you ARE a pre-reg and moved pharmacies recently. TBH, this doesn’t quite square with your posting history; you first posted in Jan 16, saying at the time that you were a final year student, which suggests that you got your degree in Summer 2016 and presumably started your pre-reg immediately afterwards. Assuming that you completed your year satisfactorily you ought now to be qualified.
                      This suggests to me that you are in fact no longer a pre-reg but have qualified and left this somewhat dodgy employment!

                      However, if, perhaps because of this dodgy employment you sadly didn’t qualifiy it would appear you have been permitted by the GPhC to change tutors. You therefore have, or ought to have, someone who is (possibly) paid to give you advice on professional matters, unless, of course, you are alleging that your tutor is complicit.
                      If you have qualified and are working somewhere else, but for the same company then mcltr’s avice is good, although I think I’d have a chat with the PDA in confidence first and see what you think.
                      Last edited by the old merlin; 28th, November 2017, 08:10 AM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Mpharm. View Post
                        Hi all,

                        I am currently a pre-reg pharmacist which moved pharmacies a few weeks ago. During my time there, I got quite close to one of dispensers and she shared some information with me before things got sour between us and I am no longer seeing her. She said to me she occasionally stole medicines from the pharmacy. She mentioned antibiotics, diazepam. This pharmacy I worked in was shambolic. Their CD register was never balanced and this girl told me she "took advantage of that", which I assume meant she stole CD's? I want to report her but I am worried it will seem I am trying to get back at her or something. I feel a responsibility to report it. My problem is other than what she said, I have no hard proof as in texts from her to me etc. So it would be my word against her type thing.

                        Also, that whole pharmacy should be reported in my opinion as:

                        1- Pharmacist rarely come on time and they have non-pharmacist staff hand out medicines and sell P medicines without the RP coming in and signing in.
                        2- They get staff to give out methadone to addicts without RP being present in the morning to supervise.
                        3- The pharmacist get staff to take pictures of Rx and labels etc and post them on watsapp and they give the okay for the products to be dispensed over watsapp without them actually being there!

                        And there is even more. Like I said this place is shambles and I am giving serious thought to reporting them. Another problem I have is that a friend of mine works there currently and I don't want to jeopardise his job there.
                        I would advice you to contact the security team or the superintendent they are to implant a hidden camera to gathet evience then they can dismiss based on that.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I agree with Primrose. Also, I would be tempted to whistleblow.

                          Comment

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