Latest Updates

Review of the Pharmacy Assessment System

The PSI Council directed that a review of the Pharmacy Assessment System be conducted after three cycles of its use. As part of this review we sought feedback during 2018 from pharmacists and members of their pharmacy teams on the use of the Pharmacy Assessment System in their pharmacies.

The review is now complete, and the PSI would like to take the opportunity to thank all those who provided feedback, through the online survey and at the pharmacy visits.

At the September meeting of the PSI Council, the Council considered the findings and recommendations of the review. All four recommendations were approved by Council, and we will proceed with the implementation of the recommendations.

Recommendations of the PSI Executive to Council

Recommendation 1: Require all registered retail pharmacy businesses to continue completing the pharmacy assessment system and for this requirement to be underpinned by legislation.
Recommendation 2: Reduce the frequency of completion of the pharmacy assessment system to once annually.
Recommendation 3: Require all pharmacies to provide the PSI with an annual declaration at continued registration to confirm that the pharmacy assessment system has been completed.
Recommendation 4: Explore the development of an online version of the pharmacy assessment system.

What does this mean for your pharmacy?

From January 2019, the completion of the Pharmacy Assessment System will be reduced to once annually. In early January, the PSI will post one set of booklets to your pharmacy for you to use, or alternatively you can complete the editable PDF version of the Pharmacy Assessment System.

Supervising pharmacists are still expected to continue completing Cycle 4, which commenced in July 2018 and will end in December 2018.

Any further changes based on the other recommendations above will occur on a phased basis and will be communicated to you as these are progressed.

Completion Schedule 2018

Engagement with the Pharmacy Assessment System to date demonstrates a pharmacy's commitment to ensuring patient safety and quality of care in providing services in compliance with statutory requirements, PSI Guidance and good pharmacy practice.

Pharmacies should be mid-completion of cycle 4 of the Pharmacy Assessment System. This will facilitate a continuous cycle of ongoing compliance at your pharmacy and will help verify and sustain the improvements that you made during previous cycles.

For the remainder of 2018, we will continue to issue monthly email reminders to all supervising pharmacists.

 Section Start Date
 1. Management and Supervision
 July 2018
 2. Sale and Supply of Non-Prescription Medicines
 August 2018
 3. Sale and Supply of Prescription Medicines
 September 2018
 4. Documentation and Record Keeping
 October 2018
 5. Premises, Equipment and Storage
 November 2018
 6. Supply of Medicines to Patients in Residential Care Settings
 December 2018

Advisory Visits

Between February and June 2017, PSI inspectors visited 1,826 registered pharmacies to conduct advisory visits and to answer questions in support of the introduction of the Pharmacy Assessment System, as a self-audit tool in pharmacies. 

Key Statistics from the Advisory Visits in 2017

  • In 67% of pharmacies, the supervising pharmacist was present
  • 90% of pharmacies had started completing the Pharmacy Assessment System
  • 79% of pharmacies said it helped review pharmacy practice/ identify areas for improvement

There were 1,911 retail pharmacy businesses registered with the PSI as of 1 July, 2017. New pharmacies were provided with an overview of the Pharmacy Assessment System during the pre-registration process. Hospital pharmacies were not visited as part of the advisory visits.

Past Information Events

To provide information and support in the roll-out of the Pharmacy Assessment System, we held 12 information events in various locations around the country in October and November 2016 and again in March 2017. You can view the event presentation and other resources that we have available.

If you have any questions or feedback on the Pharmacy Assessment System, you can email us on inspectionproject@psi.ie.