The training needs, attitudes and experience of pharmacy support staff in Northern Scotland

Sarah M. Smith, Margaret C. Watson

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

5 Citations (SciVal)


Objective: The purpose of this survey was to explore: attitudes towards training; experience of training; and training needs of support staff in hospital and community pharmacies in Northern Scotland. Method: A postal questionnaire was sent to hospital and community pharmacies in the five regions of Northern Scotland. The intended respondents were community pharmacists, community pharmacy support staff, hospital pharmacists, and hospital pharmacy support staff. Key findings: Data were collected from 105 (62.9%) community pharmacists, 463 (57.0%) community pharmacy support staff, 19 (90.5%) hospital pharmacists, and 88 (83.8%) hospital pharmacy support staff. Pharmacists and support staff in both settings: agreed that support staff currently receive insufficient training; were in favour of support staff receiving training; and agreed that training enhances both the confidence that support staff have in themselves and the confidence that pharmacists have in their staff. Barriers to training for support staff included: lack of availability of local relevant courses; lack of time in the working day; distance to training events; insufficient staff levels to enable staff to participate in training; and the financial cost of training. There was considerable variation in respondents' preferences for format and frequency of training. Conclusions: Pharmacists and support staff in hospital and community sectors have positive attitudes towards training for support staff. Future training initiatives need to address barriers to training and accommodate different preferences for training format and frequency where possible.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)191-197
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Pharmacy Practice
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacy
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Health Policy
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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