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Surprise Consultation on the Introduction of Pharmacist Apprenticeship in England

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  • Surprise Consultation on the Introduction of Pharmacist Apprenticeship in England

    Hello
    Did you all receive an e-mail with this disturbing news?

    Please go to link below and have your voices heard. Search for pharmacist apprenticeships to find the consultation.


    https://www.instituteforapprenticeships.org/developing-new-apprenticeships/apprenticeship-standard-consultations/




  • #2
    What’s disturbing about it? I skipped through it but haven’t had time to read it all.
    Lively debate is encouraged but please respect the opinions and feelings of others.
    Please help keep the forum vibrant by spreading the work to friends and colleagues via word of mouth or social media.
    Thank you for contributing to this site.

    Comment


    • sparkybw
      sparkybw commented
      Editing a comment
      It’s concerning that they don’t appear to understand what a pharmacist does. They also don’t appear to recognise that many pharmacy technicians don’t work directly under the supervision of a pharmacist. The whole thing reads like some kind of career guide that has been copied from elsewhere but with no thought or understanding of what the words mean.

    • mcitr
      mcitr commented
      Editing a comment
      Head Barista is definitely the funniest spec.

  • #3
    If you step away from pharmacy, the country needs more level 4, 5 and beyond level apprenticeships.

    If it was up to me I would do what Labour were proposing and ban level 2 apprenticeships completely and rebuild level 3 and beyond with much more rigorous inspections. The vast number of level 2 apprenticeships of a low quality does worry and annoy me.

    In terms of consistency, it's not really consistent to yell no to this. There's a nurse associate apprenticeship now, There are even lots of ones vaguely related to pharmacy already such as Technical scientist and Clinical Trials specialist apprenticeship.

    It's also bonkers that the only route to being a pharmacist is an undergrad degree, or magically having a degree from and EEA country converted or holding an equivalent and doing OSPAP.

    Comment


    • #4
      I'm sure that we will soon see 'Apprentice Physicians' too.
      Perhaps we should also try some 'Apprentice Politicians'.
      47 BC : Julius Cesar : Veni Vidi Vici : I came, I saw I conquered.
      2018 AD : Modern Man : I shopped, I clicked, I collected.
      How times change.

      If you find you have read something that has upset or offended you an anyway please unread it at once.

      Comment


      • #5
        The spec appeared to be written by someone who had visited a pharmacy once but has no idea what the degree is actually for.

        Complete absence of technical skills for industry or academia that you pick up at University alongside the clinical practice and medicines management.

        I'm not fundamentally opposed to an apprenticeship but this one essentially has 20% off-site learning over 5 years so in essence the 4 years of the current MPharm programme would be covered in less than a third of the time? Increase the duration to 7 years with 50% off site learning and we're far closer to where we need to be.

        The primary risk here is that the shoe et al will just use the apprentices as cheap labour and not invest in proper development (also the difficult task of removing those who do not have the requisite ability to eventually achieve the title).
        I remember when a blog was an individual boot.

        Comment


        • #6
          Originally posted by Nimrec View Post

          I'm not fundamentally opposed to an apprenticeship but this one essentially has 20% off-site learning over 5 years so in essence the 4 years of the current MPharm programme would be covered in less than a third of the time? Increase the duration to 7 years with 50% off site learning and we're far closer to where we need to be.
          I'm not sure why that is, I know a fair bit about apprenticeships, but in much lower level apprenticeships the 20% is common. As levels 4 and above are so rare I'm not sure how common this is for those. I would make the very bold suggestion that I think the where and the who of the offsite learning is a more important factor than the %. Usually employers moan about off site supervision, in the case of pharmacies, the system is so terrible I suggest that in some cases it might be an improvement.


          Originally posted by Nimrec View Post
          The primary risk here is that the shoe et al will just use the apprentices as cheap labour and not invest in proper development (also the difficult task of removing those who do not have the requisite ability to eventually achieve the title).
          They will exploit it just like pharmacists and not just the chains exploit MPharms, pre-reg's and string along counter assistants and dispensers. This is pharmacy full stop.

          Comment


          • #7
            Devil's advocate, but without tuition fees (or as high fees) and working on the job, are these actually substantial advantages for the person to decide whether they want to do pharmacy or not?

            I know companies will exploit apprenticeships, I bet I am more cynical than anyone else here about level 2 apprenticeships, but there are some interesting possible advantages to the students. The all or nothing nature of pharmacy seems to me to be a very big disadvantage.

            Comment


            • #8
              I have to be honest and say if I left uni with a massive debt and went onto work in retail I’d feel I’d been really ripped off, as I always did when I did locums. To have spent five years actually earning a bit of money would be my preferred choice. If at the end of the apprenticeship a person wants to specialise they could go to uni then. I always felt over qualified when I worked in shops, sorry but that’s how always felt. I don’t think it matters if only 20% of the MPharm is covered because all I ever used was less then 5%.
              Lively debate is encouraged but please respect the opinions and feelings of others.
              Please help keep the forum vibrant by spreading the work to friends and colleagues via word of mouth or social media.
              Thank you for contributing to this site.

              Comment


              • #9
                Originally posted by admin View Post
                I have to be honest and say if I left uni with a massive debt and went onto work in retail I’d feel I’d been really ripped off, as I always did when I did locums. To have spent five years actually earning a bit of money would be my preferred choice. If at the end of the apprenticeship a person wants to specialise they could go to uni then. I always felt over qualified when I worked in shops, sorry but that’s how always felt. I don’t think it matters if only 20% of the MPharm is covered because all I ever used was less then 5%.
                The modern world is a very harsh place. It is madness having a debt of £74,000. A problem of all degrees, some will say that pharmacy is different as it's four years, but there are many other undergraduate master's degrees, particularly in engineering.

                30 + pharmacy schools
                £74k debt
                Community controlled by big companies
                Heavily non-unionised sector
                Sizeable EEA and non-EEA pharmacists.
                Allied with a retail sector
                Relatively tiny industrial sector
                ultra competitive NHS sector

                A nightmare.

                Comment


                • #10
                  Originally posted by admin View Post
                  I have to be honest and say if I left uni with a massive debt and went onto work in retail I’d feel I’d been really ripped off, as I always did when I did locums. To have spent five years actually earning a bit of money would be my preferred choice. If at the end of the apprenticeship a person wants to specialise they could go to uni then. I always felt over qualified when I worked in shops, sorry but that’s how always felt. I don’t think it matters if only 20% of the MPharm is covered because all I ever used was less then 5%.
                  +++1

                  Comment


                  • #11
                    Originally posted by admin View Post
                    I have to be honest and say if I left uni with a massive debt and went onto work in retail I’d feel I’d been really ripped off, as I always did when I did locums. To have spent five years actually earning a bit of money would be my preferred choice. If at the end of the apprenticeship a person wants to specialise they could go to uni then. I always felt over qualified when I worked in shops, sorry but that’s how always felt. I don’t think it matters if only 20% of the MPharm is covered because all I ever used was less then 5%.
                    I agree with most of your sentiment. The problem is that "pharmacist" is a protected title. You're either a pharmacist or you're not. I feel that lowering the bar so someone can just be a community pharmacist would drag everyone else down to the lowest common denominator.
                    I remember when a blog was an individual boot.

                    Comment


                    • admin
                      admin commented
                      Editing a comment
                      I know what you’re saying but if you think of doctors there’s large differences in their skills and training. On one hand we have GPs then up to consultations, surgeons etc. If you trained for years to be a surgeon then only did the odd few stitches in primary care wouldn’t you feel you’d wasted all that time and training, of course you would.

                  • #12
                    Here in Cambridge area, we have excellent GPs. Several ladies are GPs while their husbands are consultants. There a few GPs who were registrars but failed to get a consultant post. The excellent local schools and proximity of Addenbrookes make the area very attractive to drs. We have an ex ENT registrar working in our surgery. He sees the ENT pts. Currently treating my wife for Menieres and me for nasal problems.
                    johnep

                    Comment


                    • #13
                      Underemployment, which isn't a universally used term, is sadly common throughout the UK and developed world.

                      A big ONS report a few years ago saying that 1/3 were in the wrong job with half overqualified and half underqualified (mentioned in relevance to this thread).

                      The relevance of the protected title is that without it, pharmacists would be on £10 an hour.

                      Some hospital pharmacists who've done the diploma can get a bit cranky in community if they are underused. I think this is a completely fair enough point, the diploma is a postgraduate qualification and quite different environment.

                      Comment


                      • admin
                        admin commented
                        Editing a comment
                        I aways felt over qualified when I just had a BSc. when I worked in retail, which I did for years, and still do when I do locums. It’s not so much the qualification but more the feeling no of why did I learn all that stuff to do this job?

                    • #14
                      Is it a generational thing admin ? I'm a millenial and whilst I obviously felt I was underutilised in pharmacy, so is everyone in there from the cleaner up to the hospital pharmacist, even counter assistants without GCSEs, it's just how it is. I did enjoy pharmacy, even retail pharmacy. But I also expect to be working till I die, likely for minimum wage, and most people I know in 2019 have two degrees. In 2014, not the case, 2019, this is something that's changed.

                      What I'm doing now doesn't even use my undergrad degree. A lot of people ask me saying oh it must be so much better, but seriously, it doesn't! It uses some A-level stuff. I suppose it uses the degree skills in some ways, but I'm one of those annoying people that think there are many people who didn't go to university walking around with these skills. There are stats for all sorts of graduate stuff out there usually quotes around 50% of people being in graduate jobs, I am always sceptical as I think people tend towards the 'did you use some stuff vaguely related degree in your job/further studies' and this is for me probably something like 5-10% of the graduate population.

                      I did meet gen-X pharmacists and the odd baby boomer. The views expressed by them were very much along what you've said. Most of the pharmacies I've worked in had staff with degrees and some of the X-ers were quietly sympathetic to it, it just sucked for everyone. Did meet a very odd boomer pharmacist who was from London who was a total knobber to staff members and started saying ridiculous things to people about A-levels/degrees saying they didn't have them otherwise they wouldn't be working there. I found it very odd one day when he had a go at another staff member, because he was going on about living in London where the % of graduates is near double what it is in some other cities, so he must be the very wrapped up in his own life.

                      Comment


                      • #15
                        When I first applied to the shoe back in 1950, I was told that they preferred people with Higher Schools Certificate (A levels) for their healthcare counters.
                        johnep

                        Comment

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