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Innovations in Olympic and Paralympic pharmacy services
  1. Mark Stuart1,
  2. David Mottram2,
  3. Trudy Thomas3
  1. 1BMJ Learning, BMJ Group, London, UK
  2. 2School of Pharmacy and Biomolecular Sciences, Liverpool John Moores University, Liverpool, UK
  3. 3Medway School of Pharmacy, University of Kent and University of Greenwich, Medway, UK
  1. Correspondence to Mark Stuart, Flat 4, 139 York Way, London N7 9LG UK; markcstuart{at}

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Medical services have been designed and implemented for a number of major sporting events in the recent years, including Sydney 20001, Athens 20042, Singapore 20103 and Innsbruck 2012.4 Within the published reports from these Games, little or no reference was made to the important role that pharmacy plays within each of the disciplines that constitute medical services.

The health protection of athletes is a crucial role for the International Olympic Committee.5 It is therefore important that medical services at major sporting events, such as Olympic and Paralympic Games are well-planned, comprehensive and robust. Consequently, the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) were tasked with providing these services. The Medical Services for London 2012 incorporated a specialist pharmacy work stream comprising a Pharmacy Planning Committee that had an advisory and operational role for the LOCOG Medical Services. This nine-member committee, under the leadership of Mark Stuart, Pharmacy Clinical Lead, brought national expertise and experience from across the sphere of pharmacy practice. A recently published paper details the work of this committee in developing and delivering pharmacy services for London 2012.6

The objective of the present review was to evaluate the impact of a number of innovative features in the pharmacy services that had not been operated at previous major sporting events.

Aim of the pharmacy service

The primary remit of the Pharmacy Planning Committee was to design and oversee a safe, efficient and accurate dispensary service and to plan a system of supply, storage and management of medicines for use at competition and training venues. This included the design of systems to manage a range of drugs used for emergency medicine, including controlled drugs (morphine sulfate) that were carried by doctors at the competition venues.

In collaboration with the other LOCOG specialist clinical leads, …

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  • Correction notice This article has been corrected since it was published Online First. The article was originally published incorrectly as a Review, but has now been changed to an Editorial.

  • Contributors Each author has equally contributed to the planning and conduct of the work discussed in the review article. As the Superintendent Pharmacist for the pharmacy service discussed, Mark Stuart is responsible for the overall content as guarantor.

  • Competing interests None.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.