Professional services rooms are defined in Schedule 5F of the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law (NSW) (National Law) as “premises in or on which a person carries on a pharmacy business that involves only –
- the preparation and packaging of drugs, or the packaging of drugs, by or under the personal supervision of a pharmacist, for supply to individual patients or to a health care facility for supply to patients or residents of that facility; and
- the storage of those drugs.”
In New South Wales, professional services rooms can either be within the approved pharmacy premises or they can be separate, but associated with an approved pharmacy premises.
If the professional services room is separate from the associated approved premises, the National Law requires that, during any period in which a pharmacy business carried on in an associated professional services room, and the pharmacy business with which the premises are associated, operate simultaneously, each business must be in the charge of a separate pharmacist who must personally supervise the carrying on of each business.
In New South Wales an approved pharmacy and an associated professional services room are counted as one pharmacy business.
Before establishing a professional services room in New South Wales, whether it is within an existing approved premises or in separate, associated premises, pharmacy owners must apply to the Pharmacy Council of New South Wales for prior approval. The proposed premises will be inspected prior to approval.
Regulation 13 of the Health Practitioner Regulation (New South Wales) Regulation 2016 sets out the standards for approval of professional services rooms including:
- all reasonable steps to prevent public access to the premises are to have been taken;
- the premises, including doors, windows, floors or ceilings, are to be secure to minimise the risk of unauthorised access to the premises and schedules medicines in the premises;
- the premises are to be equipped with a dispensing area of at least 8 square metres (or such lesser area as the Pharmacy Council may approve in a particular case;
- requirements for the lay out and equipment of the premises and the publications to be kept at the premises;
- the premises to be adequately lit and ventilated, equipped with a stainless steel or similarly impervious sink supplied with hot and cold water; and
- requirements for the bench and dispensary barcode scanners.
This article was written by Principal, Georgina Odell. Should you have any concerns regarding the establishment or use of a professional services room in New South Wales, please contact Georgina Odell on (02) 9018 9975 or firstname.lastname@example.org.