Cookie policy: This site uses cookies (small files stored on your computer) to simplify and improve your experience of this website. Cookies are small text files stored on the device you are using to access this website. For more information please take a look at our terms and conditions. Some parts of the site may not work properly if you choose not to accept cookies.

Join

Subscribe or Register

Existing user? Login

Communication is key

Pharmacists who have trained outside the European Economic Area and whowish to practise in Britain have their English language skills assessedas part of their application to join the Royal Pharmaceutical Society’sRegister

Pharmacists who have trained outside the European Economic Area and who wish to practise in Britain have their English language skills assessed as part of their application to join the Royal Pharmaceutical Society’s Register.

Pharmacists from within the EEA face no such hurdle, even though the Society would like to be able to take on the responsibility of testing them, too (pp204–5).

The question of responsibility is muddied because, although the Department of Health believes it is an employment issue, a recent survey carried out by the Society reveals that nearly two-thirds of employers do not routinely assess candidates’ English skills; many of them assume it has been already done by the Society (p197).

Not surprisingly, a substantial minority of employers admitted in the survey that language difficulties have caused problems.

The free movement of labour throughout Europe is an important principle. But countering the potential risks to patients from misunderstanding a pharmacist’s advice must surely have a higher priority than allowing a European pharmacist to work wherever he or she chooses.

The Society is lobbying to have all this sorted out — a move that is supported by the medical and nursing regulators.

A Government that places such importance on ensuring that health professionals are regulated to protect patients and the public is failing those groups by not demanding that these same professionals can communicate effectively.

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal URI: 10975958

Have your say

For commenting, please login or register as a user and agree to our Community Guidelines. You will be re-directed back to this page where you will have the ability to comment.

Recommended from Pharmaceutical Press

Search an extensive range of the world’s most trusted resources

Powered by MedicinesComplete
  • Print
  • Share
  • Comment
  • Save
  • Print Friendly Version of this pagePrint Get a PDF version of this webpagePDF

Jobs you might like

Newsletter Sign-up

Want to keep up with the latest news, comment and CPD articles in pharmacy and science? Subscribe to our free alerts.