Evaluation of the HEE/PWDS General Practice Pharmacy Technician Medicines Optimisation Training Programme

Mary Carter, Kerry Street

Research output: Contribution to conferencePoster

Abstract

Introduction
In 2019, Pharmacy Workforce Development South (PWDS) collaborated with Health Education England (HEE) Primary Care Training Hub (Wessex) to develop a competency based training programme for pharmacy technicians working in General Practice (GP). The programme consisted of competencies and underpinning knowledge to meet the evolving roles of pharmacy technicians working in primary care and was informed using the results from work undertaken to identify the learning needs of pharmacy technicians working in GP practices1. This work identified the need for relevant learning and competency assessments. The programme was launched in November 2019 and a formal evaluation took place in October 2020.

Project Aim and Objectives
The aim of the project was to undertake a formal evaluation. The objectives for this evaluation were to understand the following aspects of the pilot training programme:
1) The relevance of the competencies and underpinning knowledge to the pharmacy technician role in primary care
2) The appropriateness of the assessment strategies and methodology
3) The local assessment burden on the educational supervisors
4) The ease of use and understanding of the programme structure and contents
5) The effect of the COVID19 pandemic on trainee progression through the training programme

Results
The COVID 19 pandemic resulted in a low survey response rate from educational supervisors (18%, n=4), ad hoc feedback was used to support the results. Response rate from trainees was 64% (n=14). 100% (n=4) of educational supervisors felt that the competencies in the programme were very or extremely relevant to the GP pharmacy technician role. 75% (n=3) felt that the observation assessment methodology was correct.
85.7% (n=12) of trainees felt that the underpinning knowledge requirements were very or extremely relevant to the skills assessed. 42.9% (n=7) felt that the reflective content of the programme was relevant but excessive. 85.7% (n=12) found the programme resources easy to access and use.
The local assessment burden felt by the educational supervisors was evident in the free text areas, in particular time the taken to review and feedback on written evidence in the e-portfolio. It was clear that the COVID pandemic had impacted on the trainees progress with reduced opportunities for training and assessment due to pandemic related activities (e.g. COVID vaccination centres).

Discussion and Recommendations
The evaluation provided evidence of the value and need of a competency based programme for pharmacy technicians working in GP practices. Educational supervisors were confident that the programme brought assurance through assessment of competence. Based upon the evaluation, revisions have been made to the HEE/PWDS General Practice Pharmacy Technician Medicines Optimisation Training Programme. Attention has been paid to assessment burden and alignment with APTUK/PCPA National Competency Framework for Primary Care Pharmacy Technicians2 and an application for approval/credentialing against this framework was made in September 2021. This ensures the provision of a programme that is fit for purpose, relevant and quality assured against a recognised national standard ultimately supporting safer patient care.

References & Acknowledgements:
1) GP Pharmacy Technician Learning Needs Survey – August 2018 https://primarycaredorset.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/GP-Pharmacy-Technician-Role-Learning-Needs-Report-2018.pdf
2) APTUK/PCPA National Competency Framework for Primary Care Pharmacy Technicians at https://www.aptuk.org/news/national-competency-framework-for-primary-care-pharmacy-technicians
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 25 Sep 2021
EventClinical Pharmacy Congress -
Duration: 24 Nov 2014 → …

Conference

ConferenceClinical Pharmacy Congress
Abbreviated titleCPC
Period24/11/14 → …

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