Panel hearing summary 2013.0136

Decision of the Pharmacy Board of Australia

Performance and Professional Standards Panel

Jurisdiction: Western Australia

Date of Hearing: 7 May 2013

Date of Decision: 7 May 2013

Classification of Notification:

Pharmacy/Medication: inappropriate, unlawful or inaccurate dispensing
Pharmacy/Medication: inadequate counselling/information about medication

Allegations

It was alleged that a pharmacist behaved in a way that constituted unsatisfactory professional performance under section 191(1)(b)(i) of the National Law, in that they made a dispensing error by failing to:

  • check the label details against the medication package
  • use a barcode scanner when dispensing the medication
  • count the remaining stock to cross-check the amount dispensed
  • perform a final check of the dispensed medication against the prescription and
  • counsel the customer collecting the medication.

Finding

The pharmacist admitted that usual dispensing procedures had not been followed in this case because the pharmacy was particularly busy at the time. On that basis, the panel found that the practitioner had behaved in a way that constituted unsatisfactory professional performance by making a dispensing error as a result of failing to:

  • check the label details against the medication package
  • use a barcode scanner when dispensing the medication and
  • perform a final check of the dispensed medication against the prescription.

The panel found that there was no evidence to substantiate the allegations that a count had not been undertaken and that the customer had not been properly counselled.

Determination

The panel reprimanded the practitioner, with the reprimand remaining published on the National Register for five years.

The panel considered that a reprimand was warranted as the practitioner’s deficiencies were particularly serious, given that the patient was pregnant at the time and taking anti-depressant medication. While the panel accepted that changes had been made at the pharmacy, it was not satisfied that good dispensing practises were now being followed in all cases and that the practitioner appreciated the seriousness of the deficiencies in their performance.

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Page reviewed 17/04/2014