It has been announced that the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) is to work towards becoming the principal regulator responsible for pharmacy inspections.

Under the new proposals, which are in response to concerns raised through the Red Tape Challenge, the GPhC will, except in certain circumstances, be responsible for inspections through more joined-up working with a set of memoranda of understanding agreed between the GPhC, and the other regulators and authorities by the end of this financial year.

Announcing the developments at the Royal Pharmaceutical Society conference, Health Minister Lord Howe said:

We need a robust pharmacy inspection regime to protect people. This initiative is not about altering or taking away inspection powers from the General Pharmaceutical Council or other regulatory bodies. It is about improving the inspection regime and lessening the burden on pharmacy businesses.


Equally, we need a modern approach to pharmacy regulation which maintains patient safety but also improves quality and professional development.

The aim is to have revised responsible pharmacist legislation in place by the end of 2014.