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NHS to support newly-trained pharmacists with new £1.5 million investment


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The new initiative is set to create highly-skilled placement opportunities in community pharmacies, GP surgeries, and care homes for freshly graduating pharmacists

In a bid to bolster the educational experience for undergraduate pharmacy students across London, Kingston University has embarked on a groundbreaking project in collaboration with University College London and King’s College London.

This initiative, fueled by a substantial £1.5 million investment from National Health Services England (NHSE), aims to elevate the quality and consistency of pharmacy placements throughout the capital for new pharmacy entrants.

The project is designed to address the evolving standards set forth by the General Pharmaceutical Council (GphC), ensuring that newly-trained pharmacists are well-prepared to meet the demands of their profession.

By standardizing and expanding pharmacy placements, the three universities seek to provide students with a comprehensive and diverse range of “experiential learning opportunities”.

One of the key objectives of the project is to broaden the scope of placement sites across London. This includes placements in various healthcare settings such as care homes, mental health trusts, hospitals, GP surgeries, and community pharmacies.

By exposing students to a wider array of clinical environments, the project aims to enhance their knowledge, clinical skills, and readiness to prescribe medication – a crucial requirement for modern pharmacists.

Moreover, the project endeavors to streamline the administrative aspects of student learning through the development and implementation of an e-Portfolio system.

This digital platform will enable supervisors to efficiently sign off on student learning outcomes, providing greater accessibility and flexibility for students to access their portfolios on smartphones and tablets.

This marks a significant departure from the traditional paper-based logbook method, particularly beneficial given that students are evaluated against 55 learning outcomes.

Additionally, the project emphasizes the “importance of consistent and unified assessment practices across all placement providers”.

To this end, all three universities are committed to “providing training to supervisors”, ensuring that “every student is assessed in a fair and standardized manner”.

Ultimately, this pan-London endeavor, tailored for students enrolled in the four-year MPharm course, seeks to level the playing field for graduates entering the workforce.

By establishing a uniform standard of placement experience and quality assurance processes across London, the project aims to equip students with the necessary skills and competencies to excel in their careers.

With much of the project slated for completion by the start of the 2024/25 academic year, its impact on the future generation of pharmacists is poised to be substantial and far-reaching.


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