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Pharmacists ‘angry’ at mistakenly receiving GPhC remediation notices

GPhC: Some pharmacists received remediation emails by mistake
GPhC: Some pharmacists received remediation emails by mistake

Pharmacists have been left “angry” and “disgusted” after mistakenly receiving emails from the GPhC warning they have been placed in remediation for not submitting CPD records.

Three pharmacists who chose to retire this year and informed the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) of their wish to be voluntarily removed from the register later received emails warning they had been placed in remediation for not completing their revalidation records, they told C+D last week.

One of the individuals, National Association of Women Pharmacists (NAWP) president Anita White, received confirmation from the regulator of her request to be voluntarily removed from the register in September.

However, she then received “lots of email reminders” to complete her revalidation by October 31. Having failed to do so, she was then told she had been placed in “remediation”.

“It does say you still might get prompts to do your revalidation, but in the early hours of November 1, [I received] an email saying: ‘You are in remediation’,” Ms White explained.

“I’m very disappointed. I’m retiring, I am not coming off the register for any other reason,” she said.

“It’s a cliché, but it leaves a nasty taste.”

“Angry, disgusted and disappointed”

Hazel Baker, a locum pharmacist for over 40 years, informed the GPhC of her decision to retire in September, but was left “annoyed” when she also received notice that she had been placed in remediation for not submitting revalidation records by October 31.

Another pharmacist – who asked to remain anonymous – told C+D that receiving the GPhC’s email made them feel “extremely angry and this passed to disgust and disappointment”.

They had also successfully completed their removal process, after informing the GPhC of their intention to retire at the end of the year.

However, “I received no less than five reminders of the need to reregister before October 31. On November 1, I received the now infamous email stating that I had missed my revalidation deadline and I was now in remediation”, the pharmacist told C+D.

“I have done my best to uphold the honour and professional standards of pharmacy for more than 40 years. The GPhC should look after its members or the number of pharmacists will continue to fall,” they added.

GPhC: “Incorrect emails sent”

The GPhC stressed to C+D that the retired pharmacists “have not been mistakenly placed in remediation, but due to an issue on the system, they received an incorrect email”.

“We would emphasise that our records clearly show that the pharmacists have voluntarily left the register and we are working to resolve the issue that meant they incorrectly received remediation emails,” the regulator added.

The GPhC records will continue to show that these pharmacists have not completed their records for this year, the regulator explained. If they wished to rejoin the register in future, the pharmacists would then need to complete their revalidation records for this year.

637 in remediation

According to the GPhC’s council meeting documents published earlier this month (November 5), 637 pharmacists and pharmacy technicians were placed into remediation in the three months to September, “because they either submitted partial or no revalidation records”.

“Only eight letters of notice of removal have been sent,” the GPhC said.

Speaking exclusively to C+D last week, GPhC chief executive Duncan Rudkin said the regulator would look at cases on an individual basis, if registrants have wrongly been placed in remediation.

“If we've made a mistake, just as we would expect of a pharmacy or a pharmacist, for example, we [will] put our hands up and do whatever we can to rectify that,” he told C+D.

Which standards should you consider for your reflective CPD account? See C+D's example

Have you received an email from the GPhC regarding your revalidation records?

Joan Richardson, Locum pharmacist

Two days ago I received an apology from the GPhC saying that they are trying to fix the issue but have not been able to do so as yet so I may well receive more notifications from them!  However these will not have any impact on my record!!!!!

This morning I log into my emails to find one informing me of my imminent removal from the register!  I need to log into myGPhc to read the letter and see what action is required on my behalf!  I now wonder which will come first my voluntary removal or my striking off for failure to upload my CPD!

PoPeYe- Popeys Car Wash, Community pharmacist

Tim B, Joan, Caroline, everybody really, very well said.

I'm one of the aforementioned sent this ridiculous e-mail. I requested voluntary removal late September, was careful about filling in and sending the online form and now have self doubts as to what they are doing with it.

My reason to come off was deliberate, to have a 4 month break after 26 years, be unable to fall into the temptation of doing locum shifts and have a complete break. More consideration needs to be given to this type of philosophy, the concept of it simply being a retirement prospect no longer holds water given the mounting stress of the position. My aim was to use the time for varying things but to also see if I wanted to come back- this farce doesn't encourage me in the slightest! I do NOT want to be struck off because of GPhC incompetence and will have to follow this up and hope that they remember how to communicate. What a sad failure this profession is becoming/ has become in so many ways, at least in Community.

Steven Penman , 2040980. ("retiring").

Chemical Mistry, Information Technology

I did the same after 25 years solid slog, for my sanity more than anything, feeling alot better and not missed pharmacy. You have done the best thing. Good Luck

Leon The Apothecary, Student

Thank you for your 26 years of service to the community.

Caroline Jones, Locum pharmacist

We MUST change the constitution of our governing body so that [the CEO's] post is appointed by election of the membership (real pharmacists) and renewed every 5 years. The pay and perks of this crew should be made public to the paying membership too. That is democracy and it is about time we had some as we deserve so much better than this shambles. 

*This comment has been amended to comply with C+D's community principles*

Caroline Jones, Locum pharmacist

The editing of my post is absolutely absurd and I challenge it fociferously it as it is a denial of the democratic response by a GPhC member in calling for the resignation of Rudkin and the elective appointment of a successor that is less of a persistent embarrasment to the membership. I demand it is reinstated as is as it is not remotely abusive but a candid view (held by so many) of the incompetence of the leadership at the GPhC. It is time for change.

Greatly Pedantic and Highly Clueless, Senior Management

Surely this is a breach of GDPR. 

The GPhC are about as pointless as their revalidation process. 

John Urwin, Community pharmacist

Happened to me last year. When I protested they agreed I had told them of my intention to retire, but shrugged, blamed the computer system and told me I could expect more such emails. They’re really not very good at this regulation stuff!

Paul Dishman, Pharmaceutical Adviser

This regulator is unable to organise a party in a brewery

martin gibson, Locum pharmacist

Well said Paul!


David Moore, Locum pharmacist

I retired from the register last December. My gripe is that you can't retire as such, only be struck off albeit voluntarily.

Joan Richardson, Locum pharmacist


Joan Richardson, Locum pharmacist

I've had one too but laughed out loud and am now waiting with bated breath for them to "remediate" me!  It seems to be typical of the GPhC that the right hand does not know what the left hand is doing - is it really that difficult to annotate the register so that emails are not sent out to the wrong people?

I'm pleased that the regulator will "look at all cases on an individual basis" but I am not holding my breath for an apology.

As for it remaining on their records that I have not completed the revalidation requirements for this year - fine as I have no intention whatsoever of asking to rejoin the register!

In my opinion the GPhC has no care for the welfare of its members and would appear to be unable to organise the proverbial booze up in a brewery!  I stated in my request to leave the register that I have no pride in having been a pharmacist and that I feel that I have wasted my life.  There is no respect for community pharmacists and we are merely the public-facing whipping boys for the health service.

PoPeYe- Popeys Car Wash, Community pharmacist

I couldn't agree more and I hope that everybody in the same boat finds something that they deserve in order to fulfil this part of our lives. Your last sentence pretty much says it all.

Chris Locum, Locum pharmacist

Their remit does not include the welfare of pharmacists. They could not care less as such.

Benie Locum, Locum pharmacist

They're only there to collect the subs. Oh and protect the public.

Tim B, Locum pharmacist

Just like rpsgb before them  they don't give a hoot about members because they think that there will always be someone to replace a pharmacist  who has come off the register. They are under the illusion that pharmacy is a profession that the whole world population wants to come into and their arrogance shows accordingly. GPhC is an organisation infested by lawyers and its self serving behaviour highlights this. Glad I'm out of it. I rue the day that I  chose pharmacy as a career and can echo the sentiments expressed in the above post.

PoPeYe- Popeys Car Wash, Community pharmacist

Good luck, Tim. I am also rueing the day, but wondering if this is a symptom suffered by most in all careers through passage of  time- or if  I've really done myself a disservice by not having the minerals to do this sooner. Hence 4 months of contemplation and examination. And the need to believe in myself and not fear possible consequences. Burn out is burn out.

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