Improving the review of standard operating procedures: a novel electronic system for compounding pharmacies.
ABSTRACT Since the New England Compounding Center disaster in 2012, the importance of following correct procedures during every phase of customized pharmacy has been a focus of governmental interest and action as well as public scrutiny. Many pharmacies rely on the rote review of standard operating procedures to ensure that staff members understand and follow protocols that ensure the safety and potency of all compounds prepared, but that approach to continuing education can be cumbersome and needlessly time-consuming. In addition, documenting and retrieving evidence of employee competence can be difficult. In this article, we describe our use of online technology to improve our methods of educating staff about the full range of standard operating procedures that must be followed in our pharmacy. The system we devised and implemented has proven to be effective, easy to update and maintain, very inexpensive, and user friendly. Its use has reduced the time previously required for a read-over review of standard operating procedures from 30 or 40 minutes to 5 or 10 minutes in weekly staff meetings, and we can now easily document and access proof of employees' comprehension of that content. It is our hope that other small compounding pharmacies will also find this system of online standard operating procedure review helpful.