GPhC explores potential benefits of covert surveillance powers

In a recent minute of meeting, the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) explored the implications of its unique authority under the Regulation of
Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA), granting powers for covert surveillance.

Although never utilized, the GPhC is obligated to maintain appropriate policies for such actions.

During a recent meeting, the pharmacy regulator discussed that the use of RIPA be brought to a future Council workshop to discuss issues including the “ethical
implications of having and using the powers, the possible use of RIPA in online pharmacy investigations and retaining the powers to deal with future scenarios as
yet unknown”.

Led by Chief Executive and Registrar, Duncan Rudkin, the discussion underscored the importance of having robust oversight mechanisms in place.

The inspection report provided assurance that the GPhC’s policies align with regulatory requirements.