PRP Annual Report 2019/2020: What We Learned
Findings from the Pharmacy Professionals Review – Part 2: Pharmacy Technicians
The Practice Review Program (PRP) conducts a comprehensive review of pharmacy and pharmacy professional (pharmacists and pharmacy technicians) practice, to ensure compliance with College standards. Practice reviews play an important role in identifying areas of non-compliance and ensuring consistent delivery of pharmacy services across BC.
This is the second article in our series discussing the top areas of non-compliance noted during both Pharmacy Professionals’ Reviews and Pharmacy Reviews, as outlined in the 2019/2020 PRP Annual Report.
- Read the first article: Findings from the Pharmacy Professionals Review – Part 1: Pharmacists
Top Area of Non-Compliance for Pharmacy Technicians During the 2019/2020 Fiscal Year
During the 2019/2020 fiscal year, 77 community pharmacy technicians and 200 hospital pharmacy technicians were reviewed. During practice reviews, pharmacy technicians are observed performing regular pharmacy duties and are evaluated on four review categories critical to safe and effective pharmacy practice and specific to their scope of practice. Pharmacy technicians in both practice settings are evaluated on these four focus areas:
- Patient Identification Verification
- Product Distribution
Compliance Officers found documentation, and specifically, failure to sign off on steps performed (e.g. for verification of patient ID, allergies, etc), as the top non-compliance area among both hospital and community pharmacy technicians. Oftentimes, these steps are performed correctly by the registrant, but were not documented.
Written confirmation and identification of each pharmacist or pharmacy technician involved in each step of the dispensing process is required for every prescription (both new and refill).
Documentation provides a picture of all the steps taken along the way in filling a prescription from start to finish. It’s important to regularly document what has been completed, and by who, so if anyone looks at the prescription in the future it’s clear what steps a registrant was responsible for.
The College would like to remind registrants that it is important to be vigilant in documenting who is responsible for each step in the dispensing process. Depending on the pharmacy workflow, it is possible for several different registrants to be involved in the dispensing of one prescription. Each pharmacist and pharmacy technician must ensure they provide clear written confirmation that identifies them as the registrant who has performed the step(s) that they were accountable for.
Documentation in Community Pharmacy
Community Pharmacy Technicians are able to perform and are required to sign-off on the following steps in the dispensing process:
- Verification of Patient Identification
- Verification of Patient Allergy Information
- Preparing a Prescription
- Performing Final Check (including when dispensing a balance owing)
Documentation in Hospital Pharmacy
Hospital Pharmacy Technicians are able to perform and are required to sign-off on the following steps in the dispensing process:
- Verification of Patient Identification (outpatient prescriptions only)
- Verification of Patient Allergy Information (outpatient prescriptions only)
- Preparing a Prescription
- Performing Final Check
It is also important to note that a hospital pharmacy providing prescriptions to outpatients must follow the HPA Bylaws – Community Pharmacy Standards of Practice when it comes to labelling and dispensing; this includes documentation.
For additional practice insights from the 2019/2020 review cycle, please read the Full Report.
- Practice Review Program Annual Report 2019-2020 (PDF)
- PRP Insights: Documentation in Community Pharmacy
- PRP Support Tools: Documentation