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New programme to enhance pharmacists' prescribing skills in Wales

Published 09 April 2024

Health Education and Improvement Wales (HEIW), in collaboration with The Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) is proud to announce a new comprehensive learning programme tailored to support pharmacists in Wales to deliver the Pharmacy Independent Prescribing Service (PIPS) with confidence.

The programme is designed to equip pharmacists, mainly in primary care settings, with the essential knowledge, skills, and confidence needed to provide excellent patient care. However, pharmacists from various practice settings are also encouraged to register and participate.

The content for each session has been written by practising pharmacist prescribers or general practitioners using their expertise and experience in prescribing, education and training. Each session will delve into conditions commonly encountered in community pharmacy practice.

Key features of the programme include:

Clear learning objectives: Participants will learn to diagnose common conditions and minor ailments, identify red flag symptoms, know when and how to refer patients to other healthcare services, and treat common conditions and minor ailments.

Blended learning approach: Sessions will be delivered as six separate two-hour workshops incorporating presentations, knowledge quizzes, group activities, case study discussions, and Q&A sessions with experts.

Accessible locations: Sessions will be delivered as in-person workshops across North Wales, Mid and West Wales, and South Wales.

Expert design: The programme has been designed by pharmacists from the RPS education and professional development team, who have a wealth of experience in developing flexible, high-quality, learner focussed learning experiences.

Elen Jones, Director for Wales at the Royal Pharmaceutical Society said:

“I’m delighted to welcome this collaboration with HEIW which will empower pharmacists across Wales to deliver high-quality prescribing services to our communities.

“I’m particularly pleased to acknowledge the invaluable contribution of prescribing pharmacists in Wales in helping to shape the content of this programme. Through collaboration with Community Pharmacy Wales, feedback was obtained which has ensured its relevance and effectiveness in meeting the professional development needs of pharmacists.

“The programme's focus on common conditions and minor ailments aligns perfectly with the everyday challenges faced by pharmacists in their practice. By equipping pharmacists with the knowledge, skills, and confidence to treat specific conditions as prescribers, we are not only enhancing the quality of patient care but also strengthening the role of pharmacists as vital members of the healthcare team.”

Margaret Allan, Pharmacy Dean at Health Education and Improvement Wales said:

“HEIW is committed to developing education and training for the pharmacy workforce which ensures that we meet the ambitions of Pharmacy: Delivering a Healthier Wales.

“Through our collaboration with the RPS on this series of events for pharmacist independent prescribers, we hope to improve confidence in prescribing and equity of access to the provision of the PIPS across Wales.”

The programme sessions can be booked on HEIW's e-learning platform, Y Ty Dysgu.