CCA comment: New training launching to expand pharmacy technician role

In September, up to 840 pharmacy technicians will be able to apply for the training – NHS England announced yesterday (16 August).

Malcolm Harrison, Chief Executive of the CCA said:

“We welcome NHS England’s investment in the pharmacy workforce. It is important that all parts of the community pharmacy team gain the skills they need to increase the capability and capacity of the pharmacy workforce.

However, the 840 training spaces only addresses a small part of the overall need. The recent HEE workforce survey reported that there are over 6,000 pharmacy technicians. It is therefore critical that those fortunate enough to benefit from this training can put their new skills to use in practice. This will require the commissioning of new clinical services from community pharmacies.

In our recent ‘Future of Community Pharmacy in England’ report1, we have outlined the need to introduce legislative changes to release capacity and allow the delivery of more patient facing clinical care. Integral to this future is enabling pharmacy technicians to do more as part of the pharmacy team. Allowing pharmacy technicians to supply medicines and services through Patient Group Directions, is one way to achieve this.

Ultimately, we want to see the NHS ambitiously commission further services to ensure the skills of the entire pharmacy workforce, including technicians, are harnessed. In turn, this will provide pharmacy businesses the confidence they need to invest even more in the further development of their pharmacy teams.”

1 – CCA, ‘Future of Community Pharmacy in England’, July 2023, available here.

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