Manslaughter charges against two staff at Boots the Chemists have been dropped after they pleaded guilty to a charge under Section 64 of the Medicines Act 1968 of supplying a medicine “not of the nature or quality demanded”. Miss Lisa Taylor-Lloyd, a pharmacist, and Mr Ziad Khattab, a preregistration trainee at the time of the incident, were fined £1,000 and £750, respectively.
They had been charged with manslaughter after baby Matthew Young died after being given a peppermint water mixture dispensed by them at the Boots branch at Hallwood health centre, Runcorn (PJ, May 30, 1998, p768).
Mr Justice Forbes accepted the pleas after being told that there was a real doubt as to whether Mr Khattab would have had the training to appreciate fully the difference between peppermint water in its concentrated and dilute forms. The court was also told that the Boots branch in question should not have been employing trainees.
The Royal Pharmaceutical Society said that the facts of the case against Miss Taylor-Lloyds would be referred to the Statutory Committee when the case was concluded. The Committee would not have the power to consider the case of Mr Khattab unless and until he applied to join the register.
The Journal will have further details of the case next week and March 18, p427.