COVID-19 (Coronavirus)

This webpage contains COVID information for patients and pharmacists

This page was updated on: 22 May 2020

It is important that everyone has access to accurate information about the coronavirus, understands what protections to take and follows the public health recommendations from the Department of Health and the HSE. We aim to keep this page updated as we liaise with the public health authorities.

PSI information

PSI regulatory approach and changes to operations

On 19 March, we outlined how we would operate differently in view of the exceptional and challenging circumstances faced in responding initially to the rapid onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. In doing so, we suspended some of our regulatory functions, such as progressing formal complaints through the statutory complaints process. After nine weeks, we believe that it is now appropriate, and in the public interest, that we recommence these processes. We are doing this in the interests of all parties, both complainants and those who are subject to complaint. As always, we remain committed to ensuring a fair approach for all parties involved and to balancing proportionate regulation with our duty to ensure public safety. We continue to review all other aspects of our regulatory responsibilities and we will keep you updated as to further changes as decisions are made. (22 May 2020)

Message from PSI Registrar - How PSI is regulating and operating during the delay stage of the COVID-19 response. (19 March 2020)

Joint communication from the PSI’s President and Registrar

This communication highlights some key messages for pharmacists, pharmacy owners and pharmacy staff, and acknowledges the challenges that pharmacies are facing at this time. It also provides clarity about how the PSI will carry out its role as regulator in light of the challenges presented by COVID-19 to our health service.

Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Joint statement to pharmacists, pharmacy owners and staff from the PSI President and Registrar. (12 March 2020)

On 24 April, the President and Registrar shared this message with PSI registrants and all those who support the provision of pharmacy care, in acknowledgement of the professional pharmacy response in the face of the global pandemic. 

PSI and HSE Joint Guide on the home delivery of medicines by public servants and volunteers during the COVID-19 pandemic

During the current public health emergency, there will be greatly increased need for medicines to be delivered to patients, particularly the more vulnerable members of our communities who are cocooning at home. While some pharmacies routinely provide delivery services, it will be a new development for others to be involved with Covid-19 delivery services. There is a significant national community effort organised to facilitate those deliveries, which may be provided by staff of public bodies, local authorities, An Post, An Garda Síochána, pharmacy staff members and/or voluntary organisations or groups. Each local authority (council) has established a Community Response Forum to coordinate COVID-19 related community supports, including volunteers to support those remaining in their homes.

The PSI and the HSE have published joint guidance to support patients, volunteers and pharmacists with the safe delivery of medicines at this time.

Prescription Regulation Amendments and Guidance

Minister for Health Simon Harris has signed amending regulations to facilitate how prescription-only medicines, including controlled drugs, can be supplied to patients by pharmacists during the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure continued care and treatment for patients and to reduce some of the burden on prescribers and the broader healthcare system.

To assist pharmacists and prescribers, the PSI, Medical Council and HSE have published joint guidance setting out the amendments to the legislation for supply of prescription-only medicines during the Covid-19 pandemic. We have also developed frequently asked questions and answers to assist pharmacists when supplying prescription-only medicines during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Find additional information in the dedicated COVID-19 information for pharmacists and pharmacies.

Emergency Restoration Process

In line with the Emergency Measures in the Public Interest (COVID-19) Act 2020, a new restoration route has been introduced to the Pharmacy Act, referred to as a Section 77 registration. This enables former PSI registrants, including pharmacists and pharmaceutical assistants, who either voluntarily withdrew from the register or were removed due to non-payment of registration fees, to have their registration restored. Previous registrants will find details about the process, the application form and guidance here. There is no fee for Section 77 applications. Successful applications will be placed on the Register for a temporary period only.

Information resources

To support the sharing of accurate and up-to-date information as the situation in Ireland evolves, we strongly recommend that you visit these websites frequently as the most appropriate sources for the latest and most relevant information, guidance and resources available:

Read information for patients and the public on COVID-19Read information for patients on COVID-19

COVID-19: How to contact us

Our office is closed and our staff are working remotely. We have altered how we are working as we aim to maintain a responsive and timely service. All of our departments are operational and can be contacted during business hours.

Until further notice please correspond with us by primarily by email, or by telephone. Postal correspondence should be avoided and may be subject to delay in response. Our reception phone line is available from 09.00 to 17.00 each weekday. How to contact us.

During this time, we ask registrants and registration applicants to: