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The Misuse of Drugs act & how it applies to Controlled drugs cabinets

A brief interpretation from Pharmacy Medical on the Misuse of Drugs Act

In this Blog we endeavor to outline The Misuse of Drugs act & the parts of the act that concern Controlled Drugs Cabinets. It is not intended to be exhaustive and is written to our best interpretation of the act, however we strongly advise you to seek legal advice and not rely solely on this information.

An interpretation on the Misuse of Drugs Act 1975

The Misuse of drugs act gives general guidance on security measures that should be considered in connection with premises licenced for the storage of Controlled drugs. There are certain standards to be met when dealing with Controlled drugs and the Misuse of Drugs act is a considered a good minimum standard to be applied. It is recognised there are certain circumstances which require appropriate alternative arrangements to be put in place to meet the specific needs of certain businesses and situations. Also some licensees with existing licences, currently have security measures in place which exceed the requirements of The Misuse of drugs act. These may be considered proportionate to the risks involved in handling controlled drugs in their particular circumstances.

The Misuse of Drugs act & how it applies to Controlled drugs cabinets.

Controlled drugs cabinet, CDC-100 with the door closed conforming to the misuse of drugs act

Controlled drugs cabinet, CDC-100 with the door closed conforming to the Misuse of Drugs act

A Controlled drugs cabinets is essentially a container for storing Controlled drugs which is manufactured in accordance with the requirements of The Misuse of Drugs act.

The Misuse of Drugs act sets out the requirements for the fitting of the cabinets which we have covered in a previous blog and also on our web site, click here for more information.

The Misuse of Drugs act requires  a Controlled drugs cabinet be manufactured in a specific way to ensure it is of a suitable level of security to meet the required standard of safe keeping  for a Controlled drug. The Misuse of Drugs act requires that a Controlled drugs cabinet must be built to British Standard 2881:1989 which essentially states a certain degree of attack must be withstood by the unit. British standard 2881:1989 requires that a cabinet must withstand an attack from a table knife for 5 Minutes and not be able to ignite with a cigarette lighter. The cabinet must also be able to withstand a force of 980N when trying to remove it from its wall or floor mount.

I addition to the above the  Misuse of Drugs act requires further criteria to be applied to the cabinet to raise it to a Controlled drugs cabinet, some of which are listed below.

  • Cabinet should be of a fully welded construction.
  • The clearance between the door and the Jam should be a maximum of 3mm
  • Keys should have a minimum of 1000 effective differs.
  • An anchor plate of a least 3mm thick and should be of at least 19355 sq mm
  • The cabinet should be manufactured of not less than 1.5mm thick steel.
  • The manufacturer must include with the Controlled drugs cabinet suitable fixings to attach it to the wall or floor.

We hope this has given you an insight into how The Misuse of Drugs act  applies to Controlled drugs cabinets and that it has been of assistance and interest. Should you require any further information please do not hesitate to contact us 01623 559966 and we would be very happy to help.