The Impact of Clinical Pharmacy on Healthcare

6 min

Exploring the Role of Clinical Pharmacy in Healthcare: Impact & CareersThe primary healt...

James Roberts

By James Roberts

Exploring the Role of Clinical Pharmacy in Healthcare: Impact & Careers

The primary healthcare landscape in the UK is undergoing a transformation. Due to growing demand, a rise in the aging population, and increasing incidences of complex or multiple long-term conditions among patients, including dementia, General Practice, or basic primary care, alone is not proving to be sufficient to meet these demands.

As a result, clinical pharmacy has started playing a significant role in managing these challenges, making it a great career choice as well. Discover how clinical pharmacy shapes healthcare, the importance of its services, and pathways to becoming a clinical pharmacist in the UK. Let’s jump right in!

How to Become a Clinical Pharmacist in the UK

Clinical pharmacists in the UK work closely with the General Practice teams to assist patients, especially older adults, with complex health conditions, including those with long-term diseases. Along with clinical assessments, they also prescribe treatments, help patients with multiple medications, and provide better access to health checks.

To become a clinical pharmacist in the UK, you need to do the following:

  1. Get a degree in Pharmacy

You need to first complete a Bachelor's degree in Pharmacy and then complete a Master's degree in Pharmacy (MPharm). Both Pharmacy degrees are a mix of academic coursework and practical experience, covering related subjects like pharmacology, chemistry, ethics, and clinical practice.

  1. Complete a one-year paid work placement known as a Foundation Training year

During this one year, you get to work under the supervision of a qualified pharmacist in healthcare settings such as a community pharmacy or a hospital, or other healthcare facility. This training gives you practical, hands-on experience for developing all the essential skills needed for a rewarding career in clinical pharmacy.

  1. Clear the Registration Assessment

Towards the end of your pre-registration year, you would need to pass the GPhC registration assessment. This is a test of how much you have grasped and understood pharmacy practices, and the laws and regulations that govern the functioning of pharmacies in the UK. If you want to be eligible to register yourself as a pharmacist it is important to pass this assessment.

  1. Register with the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC)

On successfully passing the registration assessment, the next step involves applying for registration with the GPhC. Only after you are registered will you be officially recognized as a pharmacist and eligible to practice independently in the UK.

After being registered with the GPhC, gaining experience is the next important milestone. Many pharmacists begin their pharmacy careers in either hospital settings or in community pharmacies where they can also hone their clinical knowledge and skills. These real-world scenarios also help them identify their specialization.

It is also a good idea to join professional bodies such as the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) to enhance one’s career as a clinical pharmacist. 

The Role of Clinical Pharmacy Technicians

Clinical pharmacy technicians play a major role in preparing, supplying, and administering medicines. As key members of the pharmacy and multidisciplinary teams, their role in helping patients get the best outcome from their medicines cannot be overemphasized. From liaising with patients and other healthcare professionals to interacting with customers, they ensure the effective and safe use of medicines at all times. Clinical pharmacists also work with the patient's physicians and other healthcare providers to develop and implement an effective medication plan.

Applying their specialized knowledge of the scientific and clinical use of medications, clinical pharmacy technicians assist with the following:

  • Managing long-term conditions

  • Advice for those on multiple medicines

  • Access to health checks

  • Information on ongoing care

  • Communication of special problems

  • Monitoring of dosages

  • Counseling and education on drugs 

Since clinical pharmacists also possess skills in clinical pharmacokinetics and therapeutic drug monitoring (TDM), their expertise helps reduce morbidity and mortality, length of hospitalization, duration of treatment, and the negative side effects of medication therapy.

Providing Comprehensive Clinical Pharmacy Services

Many places in the UK offer comprehensive clinical pharmacy services, including health consultants, medical groups, and research foundations.

 From support with medication management to support with recruitment, training, and supervision of a full GP pharmacy team, many clinical pharmacies provide the entire spectrum of pharmacy-related services. This could include Prescription Management, Medication Reviews, QOF support to boost QOF income and boost patient outcomes, as well as Clinical Supervision Training.

Quad Recruitment UK: Your gateway to a lucrative career in clinical pharmacy

If you are looking for enriching opportunities to kick start a rewarding career in clinical pharmacy, then you’ve come to absolutely the right place! At Quad Recruitment UK, we understand the complex landscape of the clinical pharmacy domain, negotiating clinical pharmacy salaries, as well as the myriad options for job seekers, from entry-level to more senior clinical pharmacy positions. We are committed to helping skilled clinical pharmacy technicians find the best jobs in their chosen domain. So, don’t hesitate to contact us now