Guidance on the Provision of Testing Services in Pharmacies

This guidance supports pharmacy owners and pharmacists in the provision of safe and effective testing services whether provided in the pharmacy by the pharmacist or supplied for home use.

Guidance on the Provision of Testing Services in Pharmacies pdf cover

The purpose of this guidance is to support pharmacy owners and pharmacists in the provision of safe and effective testing services to patients and the public. Pharmacists and pharmacies should not provide testing services unless they are satisfied that the requirements of this guidance can be met. 

Technological advances in medical tests and associated medical devices have facilitated the increased provision of testing services in pharmacy for patient diagnosis, monitoring and screening. The appropriate use of such tests and medical devices by pharmacists has the capacity to increase patient access to these services, to allow for patient screening, to improve public health and to enhance inter-professional collaboration. Earlier detection, prevention and improved management of patients’ medical conditions can also be achieved through the responsible use of such tests. However, in order to maximise patient outcomes and ensure patient safety, the provision of such services and any related information must be in accordance with best practice standards. 

One of the duties that the Pharmacy Act 2007 imposes on the PSI is, the duty to take suitable action to improve the profession of pharmacy. The guidance also sets out the standards that must be met if testing services are to be offered in pharmacies.

In the provision of these services, it is essential that patients’ expectations of the standard of care provided by their pharmacist are met and that they can be assured of the quality, accuracy and reliability of such testing.

Additionally, please see the National Near-Patient Testing (NPT) Consultative Group Guidelines for Safe and Effective Near-Patient Testing