Keeping Your Pharmacy Open During The Pandemic, SOP, NHS Regulations, FAQs on Delivery Service
The workload and other pressures on community pharmacy have increased during the outbreak, and for remaining pharmacy staff to stay well and not be fatigued, contractors may need to consider steps to temporarily shorten the working day or have periods of time for staff to recover and catch up with any backlog of work. The same steps may be needed for a period of time, even if the pharmacy team is not reduced in numbers.
NHS England and NHS Improvement (NHSE&I) have already agreed that contractors may make use of opening hours flexibility, as set out in the Community Pharmacy SOP. In addition, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) has recently confirmed that contractors may use relevant provisions in the terms of service on temporary opening hours and closures during an emergency requiring flexible opening hours (primarily paragraph 27 of schedule 4 of the NHS Regulations), which permit contractors to give 24 hours’ notice to NHSE&I of additional or alternative flexible opening days and hours and, if NHSE&I agrees, or at least if it does not object, to provide those flexible opening hours.