CHS1 Receive and store medication and products


This standard covers receiving and storing medications and products in a variety of settings, such as hospitals and nursing and residential homes.

The medication and products may be from a number of different sources including the individuals who have been prescribed the medication, and from pharmacy.

The storage of medication includes stock rotation, maintaining suitable conditions and disposing of out of date stock.

It does not include the storage of controlled drugs.

Users of this standard will need to ensure that practice reflects up to date information and policies.

Version No 1

Knowledge and Understanding

You will need to know and understand:

  1. the current European and National legislation, national guidelines, organisational policies and protocols in accordance with Clinical/Corporate Governance which affect your work practice in relation to receiving and storing medication and products
  2. your responsibilities and accountability in relation to the current European and National legislation, national guidelines and local policies and protocols and Clinical/Corporate Governance
  3. the duty to report any acts or omissions in care that could be detrimental to yourself, other individuals or your employer
  4. the importance of working within your own sphere of competence when and seeking advice when faced with situations outside your sphere of competence
  5. the importance of applying standard precautions to the receiving and storing of medication and products and the potential consequences of poor practice
  6. A working knowledge of the various methods of good practice and general hygiene in respect of yourself and storage facilities
  7. the different places and environmental conditions required for the storage of medication, including why some medications require special storage conditions and others do not
  8. the importance of not overfilling drug fridges to allow air to circulate freely
  9. some categories of medication such as “over the counter” and “prescription only”
  10. the types of problems which may occur during the storage of medication and the appropriate action to take
  11. the safe methods of handling medication and products
  12. the procedures for the disposal of out of date, damaged or part used medication and the relevant record keeping
  13. the consequences of acting outside the limits of your role and competence
  14. the need to record information in connection with medication storage and security
  15. the importance of keeping full and accurate records and the consequences if this is not done
  16. the importance of immediately reporting any issues which are outside your own sphere of competence without delay to the relevant member of staff

Performance Criteria

You must be able to do the following:

  1. apply standard precautions for infection prevention and control and take other appropriate health and safety measures
  2. work within your remit and responsibility
  3. ensure the individual understands the need to inform you of any medication they may have
  4. ensure the safety of the individuals’ medication and care by asking them to hand them over to you for reference to by other staff, and for safe storage
  5. record all medication and products received from individuals in the appropriate documents
  6. tell the individual what will happen to their medication and products
  7. inform other relevant staff about the medication and products received from individuals prior to storage
  8. store all medication and products immediately in the appropriate place in line with legal and organisational requirements and record all actions
  9. ensure that storage conditions are correct for the type of medicine and are in accordance with the manufacturers recommendations
  10. handle all medication safely in accordance with manufacturers instructions and adhering to health and safety practices
  11. where applicable, check any stock you have received from other sources against the correct documents and make the appropriate recordings
  12. where applicable, rotate stock following agreed procedures, referring to dates of prescription and expiry and dispose of out of date stock or unwanted stock in accordance with Clinical/Corporate Governance requirements
  13. where applicable, inform the relevant staff:
    1. if you identify a problem with the receipt and storage of medication or products
    2. when stocks of medication and products are low and need replenishing

Additional Information

This National Occupational Standard was developed by Skills for Health.

This standard links with the following dimension within the NHS Knowledge and Skills Framework (October 2004):

Dimension: G3 Procurement and commissioning
CHS1 Receive and store medication and products
Final version approved June 2010 © copyright Skills For Health
For competence management tools visit tools.skillsforhealth.org.uk