This section provides information for pharmacy professionals about health assessments. The GPhC may need to conduct a health assessment if the information we receive about a pharmacy professional's health indicates that their fitness to practise may be impaired.
When should I declare a health matter?
The GPhC needs to become aware if you are suffering with a health condition which is impairing or may impair your fitness to practise. In relation to ill-health this means that your ability to practise safely may be affected and there may be a risk to patient safety, or if your health condition may prevent you from undertaking any of the regular tasks carried out by a practising pharmacist or pharmacy technician.
The GPhC does not need to be informed if you are unfit to work for a limited period of time due to a physical health condition or if you have a health condition that is under control and for which you are receiving appropriate treatment. If in any doubt you should always declare health matters to us.
If you make a health declaration you will need to complete the Fitness to Practise — Something to declare form. You should also ask your treating doctor to complete the Health Information Form and return this to us together with your declaration form.
When the GPhC receives information in relation to your health we may need to:
- Request further information from you in relation to your current health; and/or
- Request further information from your treating doctor in relation to your health; and/or
- Request that you undergo a medical examination
In certain cases we may require a pharmacy professional to attend a medical examination. This medical examination will be carried out by a medical assessor nominated by the GPhC.
The purpose of the medical examination is to obtain further information regarding your health situation and an opinion from an appropriately qualified healthcare professional as to whether the physical or mental health condition could impair your fitness to practise.
The GPhc will write to you to request that you provide consent to be medically examined, as well as details of your GP and any other treating doctors. The GPhC will pay the costs of the medical examination, and the costs of obtaining copies of medical records. The GPhC will forward medical records, and any other relevant information, to the medical assessor who will carry out the medical examination. Please note that these records are treated confidentially and will be destroyed when the matter has been finalised.
Medical Assessor's Report
Following the examination, the medical assessor will prepare a report and send a copy of the completed report to the GPhC. This report will include information such as details of your past medical history, current medication and treatment, the investigations the medical assessor carried out in relation to your health and a diagnosis. The report will also contain an opinion regarding your fitness to practise. The GPhC will also provide you with a copy of this report.
Referral to a Fitness to Practise Committee
Once the GPhC receives the medical assessor's report, the Registrar will consider the contents of the report and will determine whether or not the case meets the criteria for referral to the Investigating Committee.
In cases where a registrant is very unwell and poses a risk to the public or to themselves, the Registrar may make a decision that the case should be referred directly to the Fitness to Practise Committee to consider whether it is necessary for the protection of the public or otherwise in the public or the registrant's interests, for an interim order (for suspension or for conditions to be attached to their registration) to be imposed.