The GPhC is consulting on possible changes to allow a greater number of pharmacists to begin their independent prescriber training.
The 8 week consultation is open from 28 September until 23 November 2021.
It seeks views regarding the impact of the proposal on
- pharmacy professional
Proposal to remove 2 year clinical practice requirement
Current pre-requisites to enrol on prescriber courses are 2 years clinical practice and relevant experience in specific clinical or therapeutic areas. The proposal seeks to remove the 2 year requirement.
The consultation also aims to gain reviews on the current requirement for course participants to identify an area as a basis of their learning in clinical or therapeutic practice.
The proposed changes would enable pharmacists to start an independent prescriber course once the relevant experience has been gained. It would take out the 2 year wait which will assist in meeting the demand from both health services and patients.
Pre course assessments
Assessment of the quality of the applicant’s previous experience will still be required. Providers would have to ensure that pharmacists have necessary skills and experience before commencing the course.
The GPhC are ensuring the continued relations with Pharmacy education providers, the statutory education bodies and employers in order to implement new standards for the initial pharmacist education and training. Independent prescribing within the first five years of training will be included in the new standards. Once fully implemented (Summer 2026) pharmacists joining the register at the point of registration will be independent prescribers.
Duncan Rudkin, the Chief Executive of the GPhC outlined the important role played by Pharmacist independent prescribers in meeting changing needs of patients and health services. The GPhC want to provide currently registered and newly-qualified pharmacists the ability to begin their independent prescriber course as soon as the relevant experience has been acquired. The proposed changes to current requirements are intended to enable pharmacists with general prescribing experience the opportunity to enrol. The requirement for course participants to identify an area of clinical or therapeutic practice to focus on during the course is currently intended to remain. However, it would not be a restriction to the specific area of practice upon qualification thus providing Pharmacists more flexibility in future.