Pharmacists in their first few years of practice can now apply for professional education and training from providers endorsed by the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS), following the launch of a new accreditation scheme.
The RPS announced it has accredited schools of pharmacy that meet its standards for foundation-level postgraduate education and training. The initiative forms part of the Society’s Foundation Programme, which aims to support pharmacists in their first 1,000 days of practice to develop their skills and knowledge.
The RPS accredited the Cardiff School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Liverpool John Moores School of Pharmacy and Biomolecular Sciences, and a joint application from the Schools of Pharmacy at King’s College London and University College London. The accreditation awards were presented to representatives from the schools during an event on Thursday 4 June at the Royal Society in London to celebrate the second anniversary of the RPS Faculty.
Accredited schools are referred to as RPS Foundation Schools, and
will work with employers to provide
quality-assured workplace education and training courses, mapped to the RPS Foundation Programme, as well as tutor training and assessments based on competency and performance.
Employers that work in formal partnerships with these schools and other RPS-accredited education and training providers will be recognised as RPS Foundation Training Centres.
The RPS Foundation Programme provides an essential framework to underpin the future development and quality enhancement of pharmacists’ practice
The newly accredited schools welcomed the scheme. G
ary Baxter, head of the pharmacy school and pharmaceutical sciences at Cardiff University, says: “The RPS Foundation Programme provides an essential framework to underpin the future development and quality enhancement of pharmacists’ practice.”
The RPS Foundation Programme, launched in 2014, is a workplace education scheme to support pharmacists in any sector during their first 1,000 days of practice. It aims to help pharmacists be competent in their roles and provide better and safer pharmaceutical care. It is also open to pharmacists returning after a career break or changing their scope or setting of practice.
As part of the programme, pharmacists can access support, professional networks and development frameworks in their working environment “to build on the knowledge, skills, behaviours and experiences developed during undergraduate and pre-registration years”, according to the RPS.
The RPS’s accreditation model will also recognise other providers of foundation-level education and training that meet RPS standards; this could include companies, employe
rs and associations. E
mployers not in formal partnerships with the foundation schools can also work with other accredited providers to support their early years pharmacists.