TPP Alberta recently issued advice on ensuring TPP pad security. Since December, we have seen a steady number of reports of loss/theft of TPP forms and/or pads.
Loss/theft of TPP pads is an area of concern for a number of reasons, including:
- Your TPP forms are special documents with built-in security features, such as hidden micro-text (“line” above the pharmacy use section), a unique tracking number and heat-sensitive ink. The forms have a financial cost attached and any loss/theft of TPP pads or forms represent wasted resources at minimum. In addition, when poor safety measures allow theft of TPP forms in the first instance, the very purpose for having a secure form to prevent forgeries is defeated.
- Stolen forms can be used to illegally obtain monitored drugs as well as other medicines, either for personal, non-medical use or for the purpose of selling them on the street. Both scenarios can lead to a clinical incident, with the youth being a particular at-risk population.
- TPP forms themselves are items of value which can be sold to a third party for use as described above.
- The forms are imprinted with prescriber identifiers, and lost and stolen forms can expose you to having prescriptions forged under your name at any future time, unbeknownst to you.
It is important to practise security-awareness and develop habits that keep your TPP pads safe. Below are three tips to help you keep your TPP forms secure:
- When not in use, store TPP pads securely, e.g.: under lock and key or in your direct custody.
- Never leave your TPP pad unattended, including in your office, unless safely stored. Your vehicle or bag are not safe storage locations.
- Pay attention not to leave your TPP pad in any location where they may be accessed. If you need to step away momentarily from a patient examination room, remember to take your TPP pad with you.
If a TPP pad, or one or more TPP forms, is lost or stolen, prescribers must immediately notify TPP Alberta and report the stolen pads to the police.
Questions or comments? Email us at TPP.Info@cpsa.ab.ca or call 1-800-561-3899.