The pharmacy technical team is made up of registered and unregistered healthcare professionals, all playing a vital role in medicines management.
Registered pharmacy technicians are required to achieve a BTEC Level 3 Diploma in the Principles and Practice for Pharmacy Technicians. Upon completion, they are able to register with the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) and begin practicing as a pharmacy technician.
Pharmacy apprentices work towards a BTEC and NVQ 2 in Pharmacy Services. Upon completion, they are able to apply for a pharmacy assistant position or trainee pharmacy technician post.
Trainee pharmacy technicians (level 3) and Pharmacy assistants (level 2) complete training that consists of the following:
On the job training. This is assessed by trained in house expert witnesses and external assessors.
Under pinning knowledge provided by an external provider, assessed by formal exams and assignments.
- End point assessment, professional discussion and portfolio review. These are conducted by an external examining board.
Each trainee is allocated an in-house educational supervisor and are supported by mentors from within the technical team.
"Getting the right medicine to the right patient at the right time, safely each time is our most important concern."
OUR PEOPLE, THEIR INSIGHTS - MEGAN LOVEKIN
Megan talks about her experiences as a rotational pharmacy technician at The Dudley Group.
Roles and responsibilities of the
Pharmacy assistants help pharmacists and pharmacy technicians order, prepare and dispense medicines.
They work as part of a pharmacy team under the direction of either a registered pharmacist or pharmacy technician. They work with patients every day and help with their prescriptions answering their questions, either face-to-face or over the phone.
Pharmacy assistants support pharmacy stores and distribution by receiving, loading and unloading pharmacy stock deliveries. They also play a pivotal role in the supply of stock medication to the wards by ordering and delivering medicines.
Key roles and responsibilities of the
"For pharmacy technicians, there is no longer a glass ceiling of progression..."
Pharmacy technicians carry out a variety of tasks. They prepare, dispense, supply and issue medicines to patients. They hold positions in a range of areas which include clinical, operational and management roles. Typical duties include medicines reconciliation, advising patients about medicines on discharge or at the counter, and procuring medicines stock.
Pharmacy technicians are taking on more responsibilities like their pharmacist colleagues. Therefore, the role of the pharmacy technician will continue to evolve. Many are taking on new roles to include preparing and administrating oral and IV medication, as well as operational responsibilities that include managing their pharmacist colleagues.
Keeping uo to date
Pharmacy assistants and pharmacy technicians have the same opportunities as pharmacists to continue expanding their practice and knowledge once qualified.
Pharmacy assistants, if they desire, are able to apply to study and complete the diploma in Principles and Practice for Pharmacy Technicians, or expand their role as a pharmacy assistant and complete bolt-on accredited courses.
Pharmacy technicians are also able to apply for and access courses post –registration, which include clinical triaging, advanced pharmacy procurement and leadership and management.
There is a clear pathway for the technical team. Depending on their qualifications, an individual can either join the technical team as an apprentice or trainee pharmacy technician.
For pharmacy technicians, there is no longer a glass ceiling of progression with higher banded roles being advertised as suitable for either a pharmacy technician or pharmacist.