The General Pharmaceutical Council received six whistleblowing disclosures between 1 April 2017 and 31 March 2018, according to a joint report from the UK’s health regulators.

This is the first whistleblowing report to be published by healthcare regulators after a new legal duty came into effect on 1 April 2017. It is aimed at increasing transparency around how disclosures are handled and facilitating cooperation between the regulators.

The six whistleblowing cases heard by the GPhC compares to 23 disclosures received by the General Medical Council and 60 received by the Nursing and Midwifery Council.

Regulatory action has been taken in five cases, with one still under consideration, the GPhC said.

Three cases were investigated through the GPhC’s fitness to practise process; following FTP hearings, no further action was taken in any of these.

“Two of the disclosures were investigated by an individual GPhC inspector and concluded with guidance given to the employer by the inspector,” the GPhC said.

The GPhC commented: “None of the disclosures had an impact on our ability to perform our regulatory functions and meet our objectives during the reporting period.

“The concerns raised with inspectors and the associated guidance in response to the concern, including those that arise through inspections, are widely shared to ensure learning across the inspectorate. These issues also inform our work on understanding the experiences of pharmacy professionals in the community pharmacy environment.”

All concerns raised are used to “inform our standards and guidance development,” the GPhC said.  

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