Our department has an excellent reputation for the training and support we provide.
There are essentially three career stages for hospital pharmacists:
1. Pre-registration pharmacists
Following the completion of the four-year pharmacy degree, we work with Health Education Kent, Surrey and Sussex (HEKSS) to provide a pre-registration year. Then, in order to become a qualified pharmacist, entrants must successfully pass an exam set by the General Pharmaceutical Council. Due to the high standard of training provided the Trust, we have recently agreed to increase our number of pre-reg’s from three to four.
2. Foundation years
For the first three years after qualification, we support our pharmacists through the Foundation Programme, overseen by HEKSS in conjunction with the Universities of Brighton and Medway. At the end of this time, successful candidates will receive the Diploma in Pharmacy Practice.
During Foundation Stage One (first two years), our pharmacists undergo structured three-monthly rotations giving them experience in medicine, surgery, women and children, cancer, medicines information and patient services. For the final year, Foundation Stage 2 and beyond, our pharmacists get the opportunity to start to specialise clinically, through one-year rotations in for example cardiology, respiratory, paediatrics and intensive care, as well as other areas such as education and training and medicines information. On completion of the diploma, we support our pharmacists to take on further training such as becoming practice supervisors for Foundation Stage 1 pharmacists and becoming an independent prescriber.
On completion of the Foundation years, we support our pharmacists to move into their chosen specialist field.
A person calling themselves a pharmacy technician must be registered with the General Pharmaceutical Council.
Newly qualified pharmacy technicians are supported under a Foundation Framework where they are supported to achieve accreditation to enable them to progress through their career.
- 6 months post qualification – undertake the National Medicines Management Accreditation (NMMT)
- 18 months – 2 years post qualification – undertake the Accredited Checking Pharmacy Technician Accreditation (ACPT) enabling them to final accuracy check medications once dispensed.
Once these main accreditations are achieved pharmacy technicians can then move into specialist roles and undertake accreditations relevant to the area they wish to specialise in, e.g., NVQ Assessing, Internal Verification, Operational Supervisor roles, Cancer Services, Purchasing, Clinical Trials, Ward Services.
Pre-registration trainee pharmacy technicians
Pre-Registration Trainee Pharmacy Technicians (PTPTs) are trained within the workplace and complete a two year training programme of underpinning knowledge and NVQ assessment. The underpinning knowledge (BTEC Diploma in Pharmaceutical Sciences) is delivered via day release at Westminster Kingsway College and the NVQ (Level 3 Diploma in Pharmacy Service Skills (NVQ) (QCF)) is delivered in the workplace and assessed in the form of an evidence portfolio of the trainee’s work.
Full training and competence assessing is provided such that the trainees can work and gain experience in all sections of the Pharmacy Department on a rotational basis under supervision. Rotations include: Dispensary, Stores, Medicines Management, Purchasing, Clinical Trails, Cancer Services, Medicines Information, Mental Health, Boots (outpatients) and Aseptics, as well as training sessions with other healthcare professionals.
On successful completion of both qualifications within the two year period of training and a minimum of 1,260 hours of work experience the trainee is then eligible to register with the General Pharmaceutical Council as a registered pharmacy technician.
All of our pharmacy assistants are required to complete an NVQ Level 2 qualification in Pharmacy Service Skills. This is completed in the workplace and evidence is gathered by completing tasks related to the job role and completing underpinning knowledge tasks in the form of workbooks and competencies. The qualification takes 15 months to complete.
Pharmacy assistants rotate between our Stores, Dispensary and Crawley Dispensary.
Apprentice pharmacy assistant Level 2
Apprentice pharmacy assistants complete the elements of the Level 2 Certificate in Pharmacy Service Skills QCF Apprenticeship, a Qualifications Credit Framework (QCF) a Technical Certificate; Functional skills, and Employment Responsibilities and Rights.
This involves working with an assessor to develop a work-based portfolio; undertaking work based assessments, completing all assignments/projects relating to the Apprenticeship Framework and presenting evidence portfolios for assessment within specified timeframes.
All of the roles listed above follow the Pharmacy department Junior Support Staff Development Programme:
Apprenticeship —-> Pharmacy Assistant —-> Pre-Registration Trainee Pharmacy Technician —->
Foundation Framework Technician —-> Specialist Pharmacy Technician
Publications and poster presentations
We support our pharmacists to publish their work and share it at conferences, such as the UK Clinical Pharmacy Association.
Recent post presentations
Zamir A (2015) Use of MaPPs leaflets. Poster presentation at UKCPA Spring Conference
Charalambus A, Allen JM, Booth S, Dheansa BS (2014) Anti-Factor 10in burns: do burn patients receive adequate anti thrombosis therapy? Oral Presentation at the British Burns Association 47th Annual Meeting, Chelmsford.
Stevenson J, Parekh N, Ali K, Timeyin J, Bremner S; Van Der Cammen T, Allen J, Schiff R, Harchowal J, Davies G, Rajkumar C (2016) Protocol for a Prospective (P) study to develop a model to stratify the risk (RI) of medication (M) related harm in hospitalized elderly (E) patients in the UK. (The PRIME study) BMC Geriatrics 16: 22
Ramon-Lopez A, Allen JM, Thompson AH, Dheansa B, James SE, Hanlon GW, Stewart B, Davies JG (2015) Dosing regimen of meropenem for adults with severe burns: a population pharmacokinetic study with Monte Carlo simulations. Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy 70 (3): 882-890. First published on-line 31 Oct 2014
Allen J.M., Burke-Adams S., Fleming G., Terry G. (2013) Development of a regional prescribing assessment for doctors. The Pharmaceutical Journal 291:123
Hallam, M. J., Allen, J. M., James, S. E., Donaldson, P. M., Davies, J. G., Hanlon, G. W. and Dheansa, B. S. (2010). Potential subtherapeutic linezolid and meropenem antibiotic concentrations in a patient with severe burns and sepsis. Journal of Burn Care & Research 31(1): 207-9.