Chemist reprimanded but not struck off

PUBLISHED: 13:05 27 March 2007 | UPDATED: 11:43 06 May 2010

A CHEMIST who faced the prospect of being struck off for misconduct has escaped with a reprimand. The decision to allow him to carry on was made after he told Royal Pharmaceutical Society panel chairman Lord Fraser of Carmyllie, QC, that giving a patient

A CHEMIST who faced the prospect of being struck off for misconduct has escaped with a reprimand.

The decision to allow him to carry on was made after he told Royal Pharmaceutical Society panel chairman Lord Fraser of Carmyllie, QC, that giving a patient diazepam without a prescription was his only serious error in 25 years of practice.

"I'm afraid my heart took over and I dispensed it," said Vijay Gandecha. "Since this inquiry was launched I have not had a peaceful night."

Joseph Jiret, representing Mr Gandecha, said: "If he made a mistake he made it with the best of intentions."

He added that the patient had been "craving" diazepam and Mr Gandecha had been under "enormous pressure" to help her feed the craving.

It happened in 2004 when Mr Gandecha, who lives in Millfield Lane, St Ippolyts, was running the pharmacy on the Jackmans estate, Letchworth GC.

Lord Fraser told Mr Gandecha, who now runs the Grange Pharmacy in Letchworth GC, he was free to carry on working even though he had admitted misconduct.

"The situation at the pharmacy was in his words 'chaotic'. That must have included his records. There is ample evidence to that."

Lord Fraser added: "He's been a pharmacist for many years and there is nothing adverse known about him.

"He has been open and frank with us and no actual harm was caused to the patient. We would consider he had shown real insight into his conduct.

"His new pharmacy is well organised - he has been complimented on his arrangements in it. He poses no continuing risk to the public.

"Removal is too stern in such circumstances. We restrict our sanction to that of a reprimand.


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