I disagree with the recommendations by the British Pharmaceutical Students’ Association (BPSA) that the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) should make changes in how preregistration trainees are assessed (
The Pharmaceutical Journal 2015;295:72). Some of the concerns from the BPSA included that the June 2015 assessment papers did not reflect current practice and that some questions demanded an inappropriately high level of specialist clinical knowledge.
I agree with the GPhC’s plans to make the registration assessment more clinically oriented. My personal experience in 2007 with the United States Foreign Pharmacy Graduate Equivalency Examination is that there was a high expectation of clinical knowledge and skills. Again, feedback from colleagues who have attempted the preregistration examination in Canada indicates a similar demand for clinical knowledge and skills.
The profession should see this move by the GPhC as an opportunity. Of course, this is not going to be an easy task to accomplish. However, it will be in line with immediate and future expectations of pharmacists providing public health and clinical pharmacy services in GP practices and community pharmacies.
Perhaps we should consider moving some content taught in the postgraduate clinical pharmacy diploma programme in hospitals to the undergraduate pharmacy programme to equip students better for the registration assessment and future practice.
Chijioke O Agomo