The Royal Pharmaceutical Society has written to the National Police Chiefs Council asking that pharmacy teams across the NHS are kept safe and protected against any forms of aggressive, violent and abusive behaviour.
Many pharmacy teams have reported an increase in abuse, violence and aggression from some members of the public. ‘‘This cannot be tolerated,” says the RPS. ‘‘Pharmacy teams are central to the UK response to COVID-19, ensuring people get their medicines and keep them free from ill health. It is crucial that staff feel safe and supported to keep going to work amid a surge in demand across the health service.”
The Society has asked the council to ensure a zero-tolerance approach to aggressive behaviour from the public, and for greater support and reassurance from the police to help protect pharmacy staff across the UK.
Director of pharmacy and member experience at the RPS, Robbie Turner, said: ‘‘Pharmacy teams have been working incredibly hard on the frontline to support the public and the NHS during these challenging times. It is disappointing to see that some members of the public are behaving poorly towards [them]. This is not acceptable and will not be tolerated.
“We have [also] written to all patient groups, associations, organisations and charities around how they should support pharmacy teams. We must ensure all NHS frontline workers are kept safe during these difficult times.”