PDA welcomes GPhC action plan to improve Fitness to Practise processes

The PDA welcomes the action plan published by the GPhC to improve their handling of its fitness to practise processes after an audit conducted by the Professional Standards Authority (PSA) identified that 4 out of 10 fitness to practise standards were not met.

Fri 21st February 2020 The PDA

The Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care promotes the health, safety and wellbeing of patients, service users and the public by raising standards of regulation and voluntary registration of people working in health and care.  It is an independent body, accountable to the UK Parliament.

It is essential that any regulatory system retains the confidence of registrants, patients and the public and while all other aspects scored full marks in the PSA’s annual review of the GPhC, there were several issues raised about its fitness to practise processes.  The GPhC have now published an action plan designed to address those issues

PDA specialist regulatory lawyers routinely advise and represent pharmacists and pharmacy students subject to fitness to practise investigations and we have a constructive professional relationship with the GPhC through which we highlight procedural concerns and identify improvements based upon the cases we are involved.  This is to help ensure that registrants are treated fairly, and the natural anxiety associated with a regulatory investigation is kept to an absolute minimum.

Mark Pitt, PDA Director of Defence Services said

Fitness to practise processes are a necessary part of being a regulated health profession; however, such processes must operate to the highest standards in the interests of all involved.  Regardless of the process being followed by the regulator, the PDA will always seek to secure a fair and just outcome for our members, including on many occasions getting the case closed without further action.

Pharmacists and pharmacy students almost never expect to become involved in a fitness to practise investigation during their professional career, but when it happens it can have a devastating impact on their lives and health.

I encourage pharmacists and pharmacy students to join the PDA so that we can provide comprehensive support at the very early stages of an investigation in order to secure the best outcome. The PDA is a membership-based organisation and only current members can benefit from our full package of support”

The Pharmacists' Defence Association is a company limited by guarantee. Registered in England; Company No 4746656.

The Pharmacists' Defence Association is an appointed representative in respect of insurance mediation activities only of
The Pharmacy Insurance Agency Limited which is registered in England and Wales under company number 2591975
and is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (Register No 307063)

The PDA Union is recognised by the Certification Officer as an independent trade union.

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