The PSNC has announced the next raft of criteria for the Pharmacy Quality Scheme (PQS). Team training is at the top of the agenda together with creating corresponding action plans for implementation.
Your team will need to complete six pieces of hefty training. Managing and tracking each team member’s progress is an overhead you probably don’t have time for. Ideally, you’ll want to ensure your team completes their training specified in the PQS with minimum input from yourself. Who wants the admin and conversations about who’s done what plus the paper trail of spreadsheets, certificates and tick sheets?
The PQS for 2020/21 come in two parts:
- Part 1 will act as a gateway for payment and is around being COVID-19-prepared with pharmacy SOPs updated and completed by the team.
- Part 2 has been announced but full details are yet to be firmed up.
However, the specific training that staff will need to complete has been confirmed:
Infection Prevention and Control
- All non-registered pharmacy staff to complete the ‘HEE infection prevention and control Level 1 e-learning and assessment’.
- All registered pharmacy professionals to complete the ‘HEE Infection Prevention and Control Level 2 e-learning and assessment.
- All patient-facing pharmacy staff that provide advice on medicines or health care to complete the ‘PHE Antimicrobial Stewardship for Community Pharmacy e-learning and e-assessment.
Suicide awareness and action plan
- All patient-facing staff must complete the Zero Suicide Alliance (ZSA) training.
- All non-registered patient-facing pharmacy staff that provide health-promoting advice to complete the ‘PHE All Our Health: bitesize training and assessments on Adult Obesity and Childhood Obesity’.
- All registered pharmacy professionals to complete sections 1 and 3 of the ‘CPPE Weight management for adults: understanding the management of obesity training and assessment’.
- Registered pharmacy professionals to complete the ‘CPPE risk management training and e-assessment’.
The PQS identifies most staff in a typical pharmacy as having a ‘patient-facing role’:
Pharmacy staff with a patient-facing role include all registered pharmacy professionals, all pre-registration graduates, dispensary staff, medicine counter assistants, delivery drivers and locums.
So, we’re talking about taking almost everyone out from normal duties to complete the training. Each training item averages between 30-60 mins whereas the risk management course is four hours. So, how can you manage this with minimum disruption to the pharmacy? Especially with the ‘new normal’ business plus the upcoming flu season and winter pressures.
Easing the burden
Having your team on board
PQS gives pharmacy a financial incentive to get involved. However, the team needs to recognise the wider health benefits to the community of learning about topics like suicide prevention and weight management. A team meeting giving context and real-life scenarios can help get your team on board and feel motivated. Help them see how upskilling can also raise awareness of both the pharmacy’s and the team’s expertise in the community.
Allocating training time
Once the team is on board, it’s then about allocating time. Training needs to fit in with rotas, services and any scheduled appointments. Also, think about how you currently allocate time to training. Will you need to adjust this to cater to the additional PQS training? Also, consider how this will fit around pre-reg training or medicines counter assistant training. Keep the whole team aware of the training rota. Use the noticeboard or staff area to display the timetable to help avoid missing training slots.
If you’re still using paper or spreadsheets you may have your work cut out. This is because completing and evidencing formal training sitting on different sites is required. However, the PSNC has created a training record sheet which may help.
In this year’s PQS, the training is sitting on various websites. These sites include Health Education England (HEE), Centre of Pharmacy Postgraduate Education (CPPE) and the Zero Suicide Alliance. Each one requires a staff member to register and pull off completion certificates that you’ve got to then manage and collate offline using spreadsheets and folders. Plus you won’t have sight of who has done what so you’ll need to more involved in chasing up.
Using an online training platform like Mediapharm Academy can help do away with this. Our platform brings all the training material to one place and automatically assigns the relevant PQS training to the right person. Plus, it gives you a dashboard so you can track the completion of the PQS training and chase up those who are behind.
The PQS 2020/21 training requirements are more extensive than before. Given the backdrop of the additional burden of the COVID-19 pandemic on pharmacy’s services such as the NHS flu vaccination, meeting these PQS criteria and earning payments maybe even more of a challenge than before. Careful planning, motivating the team and simplifying the administration of PQS training will help your business succeed and keep your community safe and well.
With Mediapharm, you can get your entire team trained and GPhC certificated for one low price. Click below for a free demo:
This article was written on behalf of Mediapharm by Nicola Hasted from Pharmacy Mentor.