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  • Supervision of 'P' sales

    Hi.

    I know that sales of P medicines must be made under the supervision of a pharmacist but in practice I've seen that in alot of cases a pharmacist is present in a dispensary with no idea of what's being sold at the Healthcare Counter.

    To the community pharmacists out there: how do you supervise what's going on on the Healthcare counter? Are you aware of what P sales are being made? How do you cope with the dual role of supervising P sales and the dispensing aspect (on top of eveything else - broad generalisation, I know!)?

  • #2
    very tricky!
    even trickier when you're in the consultation area with the door closed!
    I try to ensure that the counter staff are as qualified as possible, have adequate training, and know their limitations; I drum it into them that it's OK to say "I don't know but I'll find out", I never poo-pooh any questions, no matter how obvious they may sound to me; and I always say that it's better to ask once too often than once too few.
    Ze genuine Article, present & perfect!

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    • #3
      Originally posted by hannahd View Post
      To the community pharmacists out there: how do you supervise what's going on on the Healthcare counter? Are you aware of what P sales are being made? How do you cope with the dual role of supervising P sales and the dispensing aspect (on top of eveything else - broad generalisation, I know!)?
      Training and delegation.
      2WHAM questions and if customer gets the wrong answer refer to pharmacist.

      Jeff

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      • #4
        So I guess you trust your staff to deal with the sales.

        But if something goes wrong, you're still responsible? Is this a risk you're willing to take?

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        • #5
          Originally posted by hannahd View Post
          So I guess you trust your staff to deal with the sales.

          But if something goes wrong, you're still responsible? Is this a risk you're willing to take?
          It's not perfect but you don't have the time to police every OTC sale personally.

          I personally try to listen out to the sales so I can step in but if I'm in the consultation room then that's out.

          You just have to place faith in the common sense and training of your counter staff.

          As I said, it's not perfect but my favourite saying is 'Life's a bitch!'
          Linnear MRPharmS

          Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder: The biggest cause of brain damage and 100% preventable.

          In pregnancy: 1 fag is not safe, 1 x-ray is not safe and 1 drink is not safe.



          For handy pharmacy links try
          pharmacistance.co.uk

          If you like my posts or letters in the journal try my books!
          eloquent-e-tales

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          • #6
            Originally posted by hannahd View Post
            So I guess you trust your staff to deal with the sales.

            But if something goes wrong, you're still responsible? Is this a risk you're willing to take?
            Yes - once satisfied with the training and competencies of the staff.

            Jeff

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            • #7
              Supervision of P medicines

              All you need are well trained competent staff and robust SOPs ....then Bob's your uncle ...
              oh ..another thing staff should know their limitations and refer to the p'cist when appropriate
              Kemzo the pharmacist forumly known as kemzero

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              • #8
                p sales

                BTC staff who have not yet passed the relevant exams have to draw the pharmacists attention to any 'p' sale. Often done by a buzzer.
                johnep

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by johnep View Post
                  BTC staff who have not yet passed the relevant exams have to draw the pharmacists attention to any 'p' sale. Often done by a buzzer.
                  johnep
                  This is not necessarily true. I worked for BTC this summer and was allowed to make P sales without having to draw the pharmacist's attention on each sale even though I was still doing the healthcare course. I hadn't been told about the buzzer so maybe it doesn't happen in every store? Or maybe they're not following SOPs?

                  The general perception there was that P sales were not very dangerous so it didn't matter too much. Being a responsible pharmacy student, this really worried me. I was very aware of my limits and would consult the pharmacist even if in the slightest doubt and became a sort of pest! This didn't bother me as I'd rather constantly annoy a pharmacist with queries rather than get it wrong and sell an inappropriate product.

                  I was really glad to read of Zoggite's attitude to this:

                  Originally posted by Zoggite View Post
                  ; I drum it into them that it's OK to say "I don't know but I'll find out", I never poo-pooh any questions, no matter how obvious they may sound to me; and I always say that it's better to ask once too often than once too few.
                  Zoggite: you're a really good example of a friendly and approachable pharmacist and I hope that when I work in community, I develop a similar attitude.

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                  • #10
                    p sales

                    When there is time I always try to give the background re an item and explain why it is a 'p' rather than 'gsl'.

                    I do enjoy working with students and hearing their problems. I regret the passing of the old pre college apprenticeship. Meant that when I went to uni, had good working knowledge already. However the money was dreadful even in those days. £100/year for year one and £250 for year two. I can earn that in a day now.
                    johnep

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                    • #11
                      Ah..this topic is one of my pet hates.

                      The larger BTC stores have counters running a good 20 metres away from yourself...and above the chitter chatter of customers you're likely not to be able to hear the majority of P sales going on all day.

                      On top of this, as a locum, you don't know how well trained the staff are.

                      So all-in-all it's down to luck. And never returning to the really bad stores. Oh well....

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                      • #12
                        This is not necessarily true. I worked for BTC this summer and was allowed to make P sales without having to draw the pharmacist's attention on each sale even though I was still doing the healthcare course. I hadn't been told about the buzzer so maybe it doesn't happen in every store? Or maybe they're not following SOPs?

                        The general perception there was that P sales were not very dangerous so it didn't matter too much. Being a responsible pharmacy student, this really worried me. I was very aware of my limits and would consult the pharmacist even if in the slightest doubt and became a sort of pest! This didn't bother me as I'd rather constantly annoy a pharmacist with queries rather than get it wrong and sell an inappropriate product.

                        I was really glad to read of Zoggite's attitude to this.

                        I tend to act like Zo on this and never get funny with someone who asks for my help or advice. If you make a person afraid to approach you with a question then they are less likely to ask, and the one that counts could slip through.

                        Obviously I would love to have fully trained experienced staff working with me, but as a locum I just can't guarantee that, so it's a risk I have to take. Having said that, I tend now to go to the same places, more or less, so they all know I would rather be asked the same question 20 times in a day then somebody sell something they shouldn't have.

                        Treating you like a pest Hannah because you are asking questions seems poor practice to me, but there are some funny devils out there!
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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by admin View Post
                          The general perception there was that P sales were not very dangerous so it didn't matter too much. Being a responsible pharmacy student, this really worried me. I was very aware of my limits and would consult the pharmacist even if in the slightest doubt and became a sort of pest! This didn't bother me as I'd rather constantly annoy a pharmacist with queries rather than get it wrong and sell an inappropriate product.
                          Yeah Hannah, ask away! Don't worry about annoying people - it's your future and knowledge that's at stkae if you don't. It's the people who never ask who will ultimately lose out in the long run...

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by admin View Post
                            Treating you like a pest Hannah because you are asking questions seems poor practice to me, but there are some funny devils out there!
                            Taliking about me while I'm away ;-)

                            I tend not to answer questions - instead I try to get people to think about how to answer the questions themselves.

                            "Can I sell this customer 32 paracetamol?"
                            "Why shouldn't you?
                            "Because it's got P printed on the pack"
                            "Have you asked the 2WHAM questions?"
                            "No"
                            "Well without knowing the answers to the 2WHAM questions- I can't advise you."

                            Some people ARE pests and have to learn to do something before referring on.

                            Jeff

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