Consultant pharmacists should be independently credentialed, say proposals

Nina Barnett, joint chair of the Consultant Pharmacist Short Life Working Group

Consultant pharmacists would be independently credentialed if proposals for the development of the role are introduced, following a consultation on draft guidance.

Updated guidance for the development of consultant pharmacist posts, which was produced by the Consultant Pharmacist Short Life Working Group and reviewed by the All England Chief Pharmacist Group, is aimed at those wanting to create consultant pharmacist posts, anyone seeking to become a consultant pharmacist or people just wanting to find out more about the role.

Among its proposals are that consultant pharmacists should spend 80% of their time on clinical practice, leadership, education or research; that a process should be created for developing people wanting to become consultant pharmacists; and that robust job-planning processes to maximise the impact of consultant pharmacist expert practice are put in place. 

Other important recommendations in the guidance include a process for developing individuals wanting to be appointed as consultant pharmacists; post-approval processes to consider the level of practice expected of post-holders; and assessments of the impact on the healthcare system and succession planning.

The title of consultant pharmacist was recognised by the NHS in 2005 with the publication of the then Department of Health’s document 
Guidance for the development of consultant pharmacist posts
.

“The refreshed guidance recognises that there have been significant changes in NHS since the original guidance was produced in 2005,” said Nina Barnett, joint chair of the Consultant Pharmacist Group.

“Therefore the guidance is being updated in line with the current and emerging drivers for change within the NHS.

“The guidance will enable the further development of consultant pharmacist posts, using a strategic approach to meet population needs, with robust assurance processes to ensure consistency across roles and to provide assurance as to the competence of individuals.”

The proposed guidance recommends that pharmacists wishing to be appointed to a consultant pharmacist role undergo an independent credentialing process and demonstrate “mastery in the expert practice leadership and collaborative working relationship clusters of the Advanced Pharmacy Framework”.

The credentialing process should be evidence based, educationally rigorous and have input from appropriate, defined experts, the guidance adds.

“To enable the further development of consultant pharmacist posts, robust processes are needed to ensure consistency across roles and to provide assurance as to the competence of individuals,” it says.

“These processes will help enable the appropriate deployment of consultant pharmacists which will, in turn, support better outcomes from treatment for patients, the public and the NHS.”

The consultation is open from 4 September 2018 to 30 September 2018.

Last updated
Citation
The Pharmaceutical Journal, PJ, September 2018, Vol 301, No 7917;301(7917):DOI:10.1211/PJ.2018.20205400