Whenever any person visits a pharmacy, a medicines counter assistant (MCA) is the first person contacted. The success of pharmacy and patient satisfaction is primarily dependent on the expertise of the MCA. In most cases, the MCA will serve the patient without any involvement of the pharmacist.
Thus, MCA’s must be well informed. He or she should have adequate knowledge of products, treatments, and minor ailments. At the same time, MCA’s must understand pharmacy law and must know all the pharmacy related regulations.
With a focus on the MCA, we’re going to compare some of the features of some popular pharmacy training providers such as Mediapharm, Buttercups and the NPA.
The MCA learning path and challenges
MCA’s must have many practical skills and that is why training is vocational. It means that the pharmacy must employee an MCA before he or she can start learning. All this means is that the pharmacy business owner has to be involved in the training of the MCA.
Since it is on the job training, it means that online learning platforms are ideal for MCAs. There are many accredited knowledge providers like Mediapharm, Buttercups, and NPA. Among them, Mediapharm stands out. Platforms like Buttercups and NPA leave the learning entirely on the learner or MCA.
Mediapharm realise that the pharmacy business owner or supervisor should also be involved in the process along with the MCA, as each of them is a stakeholder. If the MCA fails to acquire the necessary knowledge in the required time frame, it is a loss for both parties.
MCAs often fail to qualify on time due to certain factors:
- A need to subscribe to each of the courses separately
- An inadequate support system in place when learning issues occur
- Not enough time to go through all the printed or written materials.
- Lack of awareness about learning needs
To book in a demo with Paul, our CEO, to see how Mediapharm works, click here.
Mediapharm takes these issues into account
Mediapharm differs in a way that we not only better understand the challenges faced by MCAs, but it is the only platform that understands significant issues faced by pharmacy business owners.
- Multiple MCAs: means that pharmacy business owners struggle with time. The running of the business means that time is a major limiting factor. So any software that can help with this challenge is great.
- Keeping on top of training: Trainers and supervisors must know what MCAs are doing, what they are learning and how they are progressing. Mediapharm recognise the needs of business owners and provides them with a complete dashboard so that they have full control over the training of their MCAs.
- Too many skills required by MCAs: learning needs of each MCA may differ, however, when one has to pay separately for each course like in Buttercups, or the NPA costs build up. Mediapharm provides unlimited access to the courses. It means that different courses may be allotted to different MCAs according to the business needs and learning needs of MCA or Dispensing Assistant.
- Uniformity in pharmacy practice: pharmacy business owners require that all patients get the same high level of services each time. Quality of services should be independent of individuals. It can only happen when all MCAs get an equal level of training despite their different needs.
- Pressure to meet regulatory needs: pharmacy business owners are often struggling to meet various regulatory laws. They are the ones who suffer the most if regulatory needs are unmet. It means that the pharmacy business owner should always know about the knowledge level of MCAs. Buttercups and NPA do not provide such information directly to the business owner. Whereas, Mediapharm puts everything in the hands of pharmacy business owners so that they always have access to progress reports for their student.
Platforms like Buttercups or the NPA provide pharmacy training, but they struggle to consider business owner needs. Mediapharm is an all-in-one platform that has taken into account the needs of the business holistically.
How Mediapharm differs from other platforms
It surpasses all the available platforms in ease of use, support, unlimited excess, and complete control over the learning process.
Here are the reasons why Mediapharm should be your choice of pharmacy training platform, especially if you are a pharmacy business owner:
- It is the only subscription-based pharmacy training provider there out there.
- It means that business owners subscribe to the platform, decides the learning needs of their team and gets a dashboard to follow the progress of each team member.
- Real-time reporting is available store-by-store.
So, if there are new training demands for your business, you can immediately customise the training program according to your latest needs. This is a unique feature that is provided by no other learning or CPD platform. That is why the Mediapharm platform is called Learning Management System (LMS), and not just a collection of courses.
It means no worries about compliance, no need to chase your staff. You can decide which courses are compulsory, and which are optional.
- Unlimited access means that once subscribed, you don’t need to worry about hidden expenses. It means that all the courses are available. Best of all, it is a single platform for MCA, DA, and HLP courses.
- Content is the king; no functionality of the platform can replace the quality of content. Here too Mediapharm do better than others as a learning medium, and extensively uses informative videos (not just text), displayable badges, and certificates.
- Support by phone or emails is pretty standard these days. But Mediapharm differs in a way that it provides an online chat box, something preferred by most of the users. One can also book a call with a tutor to clarify difficult to understand concepts. It also has Zendesk integration, a support system already known to many.
- When it comes to reporting, Mediapharm delivers more than competitors. It lets business owners and pharmacists see the progress of individual courses across each individual student. However, what sets Mediapharm apart from others is the availability of a team dashboard, head office dashboard, and automated alerts.
Mediapharm vs Buttercups – An Overview of features
|GPhC and RSPH accreditation||Yes||Yes|
|One platform to access to MCA, DA and HLP courses||Yes||No|
|Blended learning approach (Online interactive modules, offline workbooks, links to further resources, mobile ready)||Yes||Yes|
|Displayable Credly badge and printable custom certificate||Yes||No|
|Instant access (No enrolment delays)||Yes||No|
|Phone and email support||Yes||Yes|
|Online chatbox and facility to book a call with a tutor||Yes||No|
|Individual course progress||Yes||Yes|
|Monthly course summary report||Yes||Yes|
|Follow up calls to overdue stores||Yes||Yes|
|Learner feedback report||Yes||No|
|Head office dashboard||Yes||No|
|Automated alerts and notifications||Yes||No|
Investing in the growth of employees is always a smart idea as it means better-informed staff and happier employees, which finally translates to better business. Well trained staff statistically results in better retention rates too. Organisation that takes part in employee training are more appealing to its workforce. Such an organisation also attracts better candidates.
To summarise, Mediapharm is the only platform which provides unlimited access to the platform. It is the only platform that takes into consideration the business needs of pharmacy owners. In other platforms, learning is the task left to the individual learners with the business owner having no involvement. However, with Mediapharm, the business owner has complete control over the situation. With the help of the dashboard, pharmacy owners know how the team and team members are progressing in their learning efforts at any given time. And the automated alerts to remind the staff to keep learning means you’ll not be on their back all the time.
To book in a demo with Paul, our CEO, to see how Mediapharm works, click here.