Pharmacists are forced to check tens of thousands of prescriptions every week which contain the wrong doses, quantities and instructions for medicines, data suggests.
In just one week 44,500 prescriptions had to be double-checked in 4,409 pharmacies across England, according to Pharmacy Voice which represents community pharmacy owners.
Inaccuracies on the prescriptions even include the wrong drugs and incorrect strengths and quantities.
Pharmacy Voice said the prescription “incidents”, recorded during a one-week audit at each of the pharmacies last year, are typically resolved by a telephone conversation with the prescriber or the practice team.
Rob Darracott, Pharmacy Voice chief executive, said: “This data shows the value of safety checks carried out in pharmacies and the importance of information transfer between prescriber, patient and pharmacist.
“This is not about GPs failing. It is about teamwork in primary care working well. Your local pharmacy works in tandem with doctors to ensure the effective and safe use of medicines.
“This is all in a day’s work for community pharmacies which check the appropriateness of 900 million prescription items a year.”