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Consultation on Discloure of Fitness to Practise Information

What information should you know and have access to about your local pharmacist and their fitness to practise? This is the key question the Pharmaceutical Society NI is asking, please give us your views. Today we are launching a consultation seeking your views on the content and accessibility of fitness to practise information on our online register and our website.

This is very important to both members of the public and registrants, as for the first time, a registrant’s fitness to practise status (record) will be annotated to their entry on the publicly available register.

In particular, we want to hear your views on proposals to display expired fitness to practise warnings and sanctions on a registrant’s individual record on the public register, and for how long this information should remain available. 

In order to provide clarity and avoid any possible confusion over the status of registrants, the online public register will also clearly show that a registrant is suspended and therefore not able to continue practicing for a period of time.

President of the Pharmaceutical Society NI Ms Jacqui Dougan said:

‘The purpose of fitness to practise processes are not to punish a pharmacist but to risk assess and assure the public that the practitioner remains fit to practise.

We believe the changes being proposed will provide additional protection for patients and the public by making information about any fitness to practise issues much more accessible.

‘However, it is crucial that any changes we make are fair, balanced and proportionate and so we encourage pharmacists and the public to consider the implication of these changes and let us know their views.’

Please note the closing date for this consultation has been extended to 14/5/13.


For further information please contact Gráinne Magee at the Pharmaceutical Society NI on 028 9026 7933 or


Notes to editors

 1.         The Pharmaceutical Society ofNorthern Irelandis the regulatory body for pharmacists inNorthern Ireland.  Our primary purpose is to ensure practicing pharmacists inNorthern Irelandare fit to practise, keep their skills and knowledge up to date and deliver high quality safe care to patients.

 2.         From 1 October 2012, the enactment of the Pharmacy (1976 Order) (Amendment) Order (Northern Ireland) 2012[1] and its associated regulations, enables the Pharmaceutical Society of Northern Ireland to utilise a full range of fitness to practise sanctions. 

 3.         The greater range of sanctions enables the Pharmaceutical Society NI fitness to practise committees to issue formal warnings, suspensions, place conditions on the practise of pharmacists and impose interim orders where appropriate to take the pharmacist off the register whilst a case is investigated.

 4.         The legislative changes also make it possible for certain fitness to practise sanctions to be displayed on the Pharmaceutical Society NI Register.

 5.         The consultation on the disclosure and publication of fitness to practise information seeks views on:

  • the publication and disclosure of specific types of information
  • how the online public register should display historic fitness to practise information in terms of content and duration
  • the disclosure of fitness to practise information to third parties.

6.         For further information and to access the full consultation document and supplementary questionnaire visit the Pharmaceutical Society NI website:

7.         Responses should preferably be returned electronically to Gráinne Magee, by 14 May 2013.