The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has today published a guide to help patients access reputable and regulated online doctor services, such as the Pharmacy2U Online Doctor service.
The CQC says that “online healthcare services can be a convenient way to get medical advice, treatment and medicines”, but is concerned that some online doctor services “put patients at risk of harm by selling medicines without doing enough to check they were appropriate”.
Pharmacy2U welcomes and support efforts by the CQC to ensure that patients are aware of the importance of only ever using reputable and regulated online doctor services.
The CQC conducted a rigorous inspection of Pharmacy2U’s online doctor service in early 2017 and found that we are operating to a high standard.
The inspection team included Dr Tim Ballard, a GP and the former Vice Chair of External Affairs at the Royal College of General Practitioners, and Andrew Moss, the CQC enforcement lead for the North of England, and looked in detail at all aspects of our service and its management, from our prescribing decisions to the safety and robustness of our business processes.
Daniel Lee, Superintendent Pharmacist and Chief Operating Officer at Pharmacy2U, said: “We are proud of the clinical quality of our service and of the positive reviews from patients, and will continue to strive to offer the highest quality medical service working within the CQC’s national standards framework.
“All of our GPs are GMC-registered and work in GP surgeries in the UK as well as consulting online.
“They prescribe online with the same careful consideration that they give to patients they see face to face in surgery. All medicines are prescribed in line with strict guidelines from The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence.
“Approved by the Care Quality Commission since 2009, Pharmacy2U has robust systems in place to protect patients, including alerts against duplicate prescription requests and medicine orders.
“However, people should only ever use a reputable online provider of prescription medication.
“Online medical services are a valid choice for patients, who should always check that any pharmacy they use is registered with the General Pharmaceutical Council.”
You can read the Care Quality Commission’s guide to choosing an online healthcare service here.