A yellow cover document from the NHS Specialist Pharmacy Service proposes a nine-point plan to minimise exposure to potentially dangerous systemic anti-cancer therapies.

The ‘Guidance on Handling of Injectable Cytotoxic Drugs in Clinical Areas in NHS Hospitals in the UK’ summarises the findings of a working group set up by the NHS Pharmaceutical Quality Assurance Committee.

The purpose was to examine the issues and provide guidance to all clinicians and healthcare workers involved with administering cytotoxic chemotherapy including nursing staff in oncology and haematology, aseptic pharmacy teams, hospital senior management and outsourced cleaning and service providers.

The recommendations set out simple measures to reduce exposure risks including stopping the de-spiking of empty bags, advice on using appropriate personal protective equipment and training in cytotoxic handling.

The document is available to download via https://www.sps.nhs.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/Guidance-on-Handling-Cytotoxics-Ed-1-July-2018.pdf