The BPSA’s update on the Pharmacy Apprenticeships Meeting and the Process Going Forward

The BPSA’s Update on the Pharmacy Apprenticeships Meeting and the Process Going Forward


On the 2nd May 2019, two members of the Association’s Executive attended a meeting in Birmingham about the proposed pharmacist apprenticeship, with the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education (IfA&TE), and representatives from the following pharmacy organisations:

  • Pharmacists’ Defence Association (PDA)
  • Institute for Apprenticeships & technical Education (IfA&TE)
  • The General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC)
  • Pharmacy Schools Council (PhSC)
  • British Pharmaceutical Students’ Association (BPSA)
  • Health Education England (HEE)
  • Guild of Healthcare Pharmacists (GHP)
  • Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS)
  • Company Chemists’ Association (CCA)
  • National Pharmacy Association (NPA)
  • Pharmaceutical Advisors Group (PAG)
  • An NHS Employer
  • The IfA&TE explained more about where the process is currently.

The current proposal and occupational profile has been developed by a group of pharmacy employers and the IfA&TE are assessing the suitability of this for an apprenticeship. This gave the stakeholders in the room a chance to voice their concerns about this and these were taken by the Institute and passed on to the employer group.

The next steps in this process will be dependent on the Institute’s decision on the suitability of pharmacy for an apprenticeship. If they decide to take this proposal forward then this would start


the process of trying to develop plausible delivery options. It would be the responsibility of the employer group to prove to the Institute that this is deliverable and effective in producing appropriately trained pharmacists. They will also have to prove that they have adequately addressed any valid concerns that have been discovered, before the accreditation and commencement of any apprenticeship scheme.

The BPSA does not currently hold a stance on the creation of a pharmacy apprenticeship, it presents potential pros and cons to pharmacy students, and in the absence of any detail on what the apprenticeship will look like, we feel it is difficult to take an informed stance. Instead we would rather be involved in the process going forward and pass on any and all relevant concerns, before taking a stance if it becomes appropriate. We will therefore be starting a consultation document and asking you to come forward with your concerns and thoughts as more information emerges in the coming weeks.

Before the close of the meeting it was agreed that the present stakeholders, including the BPSA, will meet again having had more time to prepare. A consensus was also agreed that we would urge the employer group to come forward and engage with the stakeholders directly.

We will be updating our members on this going forward and will continue to be involved in the process. We would also refer anyone who has questions about apprenticeships or the development process directly to the IfA&TE website. https://www.instituteforapprenticeships.org/developing-new-apprenticeships/developing-new-apprenticeship-standards-overview/


Andrew Moy

Northern Area Coordinator 2018-19 & Incoming Secretary General 2019-20

northernac@bpsa.co.uk

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