Recent developments

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Chapter: Hospital pharmacy : Work force development

Clinical pharmacy became well established in UK hospital pharmacy practice during the 1980s as a result of both the profession’s aspirations and government policy.


Recent developments

 

Clinical pharmacy became well established in UK hospital pharmacy practice during the 1980s as a result of both the profession’s aspirations and government policy. The role of pharmacists and support staff in managing medi-cines, both at organisational and individual levels, was seen as being crucial to delivering clinical and cost-effective treatment. This led to a drive to improve the training of pharmacists in clinical knowledge and skills at undergraduate, preregistration and, predominantly, at postregistration levels.

 

As a result of the change in role of hospital pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, supported by additional post-basic qualification training and accreditation, took on wider roles and more delegated authority.

 

Hospital pharmacy services are still underpinned by the traditional spe-cialist roles such as those in technical services, quality assurance and medi-cines information. There is, however, an increasing emphasis on the development of clinical specialities, a change driven by a variety of profes-sional pharmacy organisations, such as UK Clinical Pharmacy Association and the College of Mental Health Pharmacy, as well as by the inclusion of advanced and specialist practice by the Department of Health in the frame-work for consultant pharmacists.3

 

Alongside these significant developments in practice there have been a number of changes in teaching, learning and assessment. The Competency Development and Evaluation Group describes a set of competency frame-works, based on qualitative and quantitative research findings that can be applied to both general and advanced practice. It has provided a tool to define and measure performance standards of practice.

 

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