An update from the General Pharmaceutical Council on its progress to minimise the risk of potential biases in its Fitness to Practise decision-making.

Equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) has been problematic for the GPhC …

In xx the GPhC adopted a new EDI strategy to improve the situation, saying:

“Equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) is central to everything that we do and is woven into our Vision 2030 and Strategic Plan 2020-2025, which set out our roadmap for the future of pharmacy regulation. Furthermore, it is a key part of our Managing concerns about pharmacy professionals strategy, which Council approved at its meeting in June 2021. We have also recently published our equality, diversity and inclusion strategy (November 2021).”.

It has now provided an update on its progress. The Council report said that in October 2021 the GPhc introduced extra checks at the initial assessment stage “to help minimise and deal with the risk of potential biases in our decision-making” including asking:

  1. whether the professional named in the concern has been referred to us before by the referrer (i.e. the person raising the concern)
  2. whether the professional has raised a concern internally in the period prior to being referred to the GPhC
  3. at the Oversight Review stage we check for details of any other indication of potential discriminatory behaviour against the professional.

Other steps taken include:

  • engagement with the Antisemitism Policy Trust organisation, to deliver bespoke training sessions on antisemitism for decision-makers;
  • reviewed work undertaken by other regulators, including learning from related reports, for example, the Fair to refer report published by the GMC and the NMC’s Ambitious for change report.
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