Market Pharmacy in Bolton is the first UK community pharmacy to become fully compliant with the Falsified Medicines Directive, the National Pharmacy Association has claimed.
The pharmacy connected to the UK Medicines Verification System last week and according to the NPA is thought to be the first to have a product decommissioned and recommissioned. It is using a 'standalone' scanner rather than one integrated with existing pharmacy software such as the PMR.
The NPA is telling its members that while integrated products are likely to be more effective overall, the uncertainty surrounding the UK's FMD commitments post-Brexit means that having a separate FMD process may be more attractive for some pharmacies.
Market Pharmacy is part of the Hollowoods Chemists group owned by Raj Patel, an NPA board member and chair of the UK FMD Working Group.
Mr Patel said: “There’s no need to wait until the FMD compliance deadline in February. My pharmacies wanted to make a start now, to uncover any implementation problems and resolve them ahead of time. I’m pleased to say that everything went smoothly.”
Gareth Jones, Head of Corporate Affairs at the NPA said: “The NPA is working hard to provide as much information on FMD as possible, to help members get prepared. With the clock ticking, we are advising members to start planning now and not to delay preparations.
"While Brexit creates uncertainty it won’t stop FMD becoming an obligation from 9 February. We do however advise you to avoid getting tied into long term contracts with IT suppliers, given the uncertainty about what may happen after 29 March.”
FMD becomes a legal requirement for UK pharmacies on February 9 2019. The NPA told Pharmacy Magazine in early November that while it did not have a list detailing which pharmacies were compliant with the Directive, "we suspect many pharmacies are just starting to look into this".