Barnet Primary Care Training Hub have been leading the way in developing a strong, expanding pharmacy workforce dedicated to primary care. The Training Hub facilitates collaborative working across different pharmacy sectors, in the community, hospitals, CCG and primary care. We also have a key role in supporting pharmacists with their learning and training needs, organising regular lunchtime meetings.
Pharmacy Student Training:
Starting the end of July 2020, we have had 8 pre-reg students in Barnet who will split their training between community pharmacies and GP practices. We organise joint virtual tutorials to establish a peer support group.
Practice Based pharmacists:
We now have more than 30 practice-based pharmacists working across Barnet. This includes pharmacists attached to Primary Care Networks (PCNs), who work across a number of practices within a PCN, as well as non-PCN pharmacists. We have recently established a peer support group where pharmacists can share best practice and discuss challenges. We hold regular ‘virtual’ meetings.
This has developed from the Clinical Pharmacist in General Practice Programme which began in January 2018 with five pharmacists working across 13 different GP surgeries across Barnet. This was part of NHS England’s Clinical Pharmacists in General Practice Programme. This is a 3-year scheme with the aim of supporting and training clinical pharmacists working in general practice and fulfilling the Five Year Forward View commitment of delivering a pharmacist per 30,000 of the population. Clinical pharmacists work in General Practices as part of a multi-disciplinary team and be involved in medicines management/optimisation as well as develop patient facing roles such as long-term disease clinics, polypharmacy reviews and minor illness.
Barnet Training Hub has also been leading on applying for a training grant to support the development of a cross-sector trainee pharmacy technicians. The application has been successful and there will be 6 trainee pharmacy technicians starting working jointly in Barnet practices and either community pharmacy, or the Royal Free Hospital shortly. The trainees have been in post since February 2021. The Training Hub will coordinate the training and developmental needs across the different sectors, as well as facilitating peer support groups. Trainees will be invited to join the existing Pan Barnet educational meetings along with the prescription clerk training.
Pre Registration Trainee Pharmacy Technicians (PTPTs)
HEE released funding for a Cross Sector Pre Regristration Trainee Pharmacy Technicians after a successful pilot iniative of the programme in 2020 – it is part of the NHS aim to increase the Pharmacy workforce. Barnet Primary Care with the support of the Training hub made a successful bid for 6 PTPTs who have been in post since Feb/Mar 2021. They are completing their apprenticeship training in a combination of GP/Community Pharmacy/Hospital settings for 24 months working as part of the Primary Care workforce. They are supported in their workplaces by the staff including a placement supervisor and an Educational Supervisor who assists them in putting their studies into action in the workplace. They are also included in additional training to integrate them into Barnet Primary Care such as the Pan Barnet Learning Events, the Pharmacy Lunchtime Learning and Prescription Clerk Training.
HEE has released more funding for another run of the programme and we have been successful in our bid for another 5 PTPT’s to hopefully start in role early 2022.
In 2019 the training hub ran a successful Prescribing Clerk programme to upskill GP receptionists. It was co-designed and delivered by faculty pharmacy, non-clinical and GP educationalists plus the CCG’s medicines management team (MMT). Prescribing is the most common patient-led intervention and is the second highest area of spending in the NHS. Surprisingly, receptionists and administrative staff who make an important “hidden” contribution to quality and safety in repeat prescribing in general practice are not given any formal training. Barnet Training Hub felt that it was important to address this and focus on training on to empower practice staff to process repeat prescriptions efficiently (reducing the practice workload), safely (reducing harm to the patient) and cost effectively (reducing waste).
Due to Covid-19 we were not able to run the programme in 2020 however it was decided to design a virtual programme for 2021.
The Prescribing Clerk 2021 cohort was successfully run online. The faculty pharmacy, non-clinical and GP educationalists plus the CCG’s medicines management team (MMT) delivered 6 online sessions to just over 30 attendees from March to July. The sessions were well attended and focussed on prescribing clerks in action in the practice and how they are an essential part of the prescribing process advocating for the patient and practice in clear process, clear communications and clear assistance to all. We are in the process of evaluating the whole course now and looking to how to improve it for the future whether online or in person.
If you would like any more information about any of these projects please contact Pharmacy Lead, Femeed Padhani firstname.lastname@example.org