The Pharmacy Services Assistant Standard provides learners with skills and knowledge regarding a variety of pharmacy and medicines services to patients, the public and other professional healthcare teams. The PSA supports the delivery of pharmacy services in a variety of pharmacy environments, covering the following areas:
- Dispensing and supply of medicines and medicinal products
- Team work
- Communication, pharmacy law and ethics
- Person-centred care
- Health and Safety in the workplace
Assessment includes specific knowledge and skills outcomes that are accompanied by behavioural standards which must be demonstrated as part of the apprenticeship across all areas.
This programme meets the GPhC minimum training requirements for dispensing assistants / pharmacy assistants.
To be eligible for Apprenticeship funding, the following criteria must be met:
- Learner must work under the supervision of a pharmacist, pharmacy technician or other accountable healthcare professional
- Learners must live and work in England and have been a resident in the EU for a minimum of 3 years
- Learners cannot be in full time education and must be aged 16 years old or above
- Learners must hold a National Insurance Number
- Learners must hold a contract of employment and be working a minimum of 21 contracted hours per week
- Learners cannot be enrolled onto another government funded programme
- Learners cannot hold a Level 4 qualification or above, unless the qualification is "materially different" from the Apprenticeship in Pharmacy framework. Any queries in relation to prior qualifications and their content in relation to the Apprenticeship programme will be passed to our Principal Pharmacist
- At least 20% off the job training must be delivered, in relation to the apprentice's contracted working hours. Off the job training includes online learning, practical training through shadowing and mentoring, alongside learning support and time spent writing assessments and assignments. Buttercups Training will work with the employer to agree a training plan prior to enrolment. Please note, time within work for any Functional Skills courses must be allowed in addition to this 20% off the job training for the BTEC and NVQ courses.
- Learners must be on programme for a minimum of 12 months from their start date with Buttercups Training if they are contracted to work 30 hours or above. For learners who are contracted to work 21-29 hours per week, the minimum duration of the programme will be extended, pro rata.
Buttercups Training has direct contracts with the Education and Skills Funding Agency to access funding for the Pharmacy Services Assistant apprenticeship. Learners who work 30 hours per week or more must be on programme for a minimum of 12 months before their completion of the programme. For part time learners, the minimum duration must be extended as per the calculations in the Education and Skills Funding Agency funding rules. Upon enrolment, individual training plans are issued which accommodate the minimum duration requirements for the programme.
Buttercups Training continues to have capacity for apprenticeship starts for all age groups (16+). Please contact us to discuss how you can make the best use of your levy pot.
Non-Levy-Paying (SME) Employers
Buttercups Training has funding available for apprentices aged 16 - 18, so applications for 16 - 18 learners can continue to come through to us as normal, provided the apprentice will be 18 or under at the time of their start date onto the apprenticeship programme with us.
For apprentices based at small to medium sized employers we have been given a contract allocation by the government body, the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA), for use for apprenticeship starts up to April 2019. As apprenticeships have proved very popular, we submitted a request for contract growth in July 2018. This month, we received notification from the ESFA that unfortunately our growth request was not approved and therefore as a result we have reached our current contract allowance for learners aged 19+ and do not have funding available for now for any further learners in this age group to enrol onto the apprenticeship programme with us (non-funded options remain available).
Please rest assured that we are dedicated in our work to promote and encourage apprenticeships as an option for training and we will be applying again for growth if the ESFA open another growth request window. We also expect a full contract review and extension for starts from April 2019. For any growth requests we submit to the ESFA, it can add weight to our application if we can provide the names of employers who are interested in apprenticeship funding. If you are happy for us to include your company name on our next submission to the ESFA, please let us know by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. This will not be used for any marketing purposes, it will solely be your company name listed on the application to show the ESFA that there is great demand for apprenticeship funding from SME employers.
In the meantime, we are, as always, able to offer non-funded programmes for the training needs of any learners aged 19+, so please contact us for further information.