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Faculty open to pharmacists with two years' experience

Expansion of assessment programme will allow pharmacists with less experience to become members of the Faculty in 2015.

The Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) will expand practice assessments that will allow pharmacists with two to 10 years experience to gain Faculty accreditation in April this year

Source: 67photo / Alamy 

The RPS Faculty will assess and award membership for the first time to pharmacists with less than 10 years’ experience 

In April 2015, the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) Faculty will consider applications for membership from pharmacists with at least two years’ post-registration experience for the first time, it has been announced.

It had been possible for registered pharmacists with at least two years’ experience to access resources and begin building a portfolio for the professional recognition programme, but assessment for Faculty membership was only considered for those with at least ten years experience.

The Recognition of Prior Experience (RPE) assessment route — designed for pharmacists with at least ten years’ experience and required as part of the submission process to join the Faculty — has been available to members since the RPS’s professional recognition programme launched in 2013.

Now, the RPS Faculty has announced it will organise the first Faculty Practice Assessments (FPA) to assess an initial cohort of 21 pharmacists with between two years and ten years’ experience.

These assessments are the alternative route to the RPE for those with less than ten years’ experience, and comprise a case-based discussion with two assessors.

The Faculty is working towards affiliation with 17 professional groups, representatives of which will act as assessors to conduct the FPAs.

A total of 21 pharmacists accepted an invitation to undergo assessment from among 76 pharmacists in this experience bracket that are now eligible for FPA and whom are currently compiling a Faculty portfolio.

The first wave of FPAs are expected to take place at the RPS headquarters in London in April 2015 ahead of the first of this year’s two deadlines for RPS members to submit for assessment, on Sunday 26 April 2015. 

Each assessment will consist of a case-based discussion with two assessors selected from the affiliated group aligned with each pharmacist’s expertise.

This first cohort of pharmacists will test the organisation of the FPA process ahead of a second wave in May.

The next Credentialling Panel will take place on 15 July, when all the results from the first wave will be ratified and new Faculty members announced soon after.

Hannah Wilton, RPS Faculty development lead, says: “Assessments form a recognition of practice by peers which has value and merit for the general public and other members of the profession or professional colleagues. Faculty assessments are a quality-assured process which recognise a practitioner’s attainment of the required knowledge and skills at a particular level of practice.

”The Faculty ensures a robust, quality-assured and equitable process across all sectors of practice. The introduction of the FPA completes the suite of assessments available to all pharmacists and pharmaceutical scientists who have advanced beyond their foundation years.”

The RPS Faculty is now inviting pharmacists who have already begun to build their Advanced Practice Portfolio to participate in the second wave of FPAs in May 2015. It hopes to provide full open access for any two to ten years’ pharmacist from 2016.

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal DOI: 10.1211/PJ.2015.20067763

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