Pharmacy Services Assistant Apprenticeship
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.
On completion of this programme candidates will also be issued with a Buttercups dispensing assistant certificate which meets the GPhC minimum training requirements for dispensing assistants / pharmacy assistants.
To be eligible for apprenticeship funding, the following criteria must be met:
- Learners 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 chief 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 towards the knowledge, skills and behaviours of the standard. 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 the 20% off-the-job training.
- 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.
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 Update
Buttercups is accepting applications with planned starts for any apprentices from late August onwards due to the new funding contract year starting on 1st August 2020.
Non-Levy-Paying (SME) Employers
The Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) have released access to funding for small and medium sized employers via the Digital Apprenticeship Service account. The Digital Apprenticeship Service now allows an employer to reserve funding for a maximum of 10 apprentices.
If you are interested in apprenticeships, please contact us by phone or email to email@example.com for further information on how to start the process to access the funding through the Digital Apprenticeship Service.
As always, we are able to offer non-funded programmes for the training needs of any learners. The following non-funded options are available for non-levy paying employers:
|Apprenticeship programme||Non-funded alternative 1||Non-funded alternative 2|
|Level 2 Pharmacy Services Assistant Standard||Dispensing Assistant Course (GPhC accredited and equivalent to level two)||Level 2 NVQ Diploma in Pharmacy Service Skills OR Level 2 NVQ Certificate in Pharmacy Service Skills (No GPhC Registrant Supervision)|
|Pharmacy Technician (Integrated)||Pharmacy Technician Training Programme||Dispenser Development Programme for Dispensing Doctors (appropriate for dispensing doctors practices, or dispensaries with no pharmacist or pharmacy technician on site)|
Further information on these alternatives including costs and durations, can be accessed via the above links.
Government Employer Incentives
The government has announced incentive payments which are available for employers who hire an apprentice between 1st August 2020 and 31st January 2021. The apprentice must be a new employee to the business, have a contract of employment start date between 1st August 2020 and 31st January 2021 (inclusive) and must not have been employed by the employer within the six months prior to the contract start date. The apprentice must also start their programme with Buttercups Training between 1st August 2020 and 31st January 2021, therefore in January 2021 we will have final deadlines for paperwork submission to meet this requirement.
The grants available are:
- £2000 for any apprentice aged between 16 and 24 on their enrolment to the programme with Buttercups Training
- £1500 for any apprentice aged 25+ on their enrolment to the programme with Buttercups Training
The employer must use the Digital Apprenticeship Service account to apply for the incentive payment. The payments will be split into two payments with 50% received 90 days after the programme start date should the apprentice still be in learning, then 50% received after 365 days. The employer must have the following evidence on file to support their claim:
- Confirmation of the apprentice's date of birth (which will be documented within the Commitment Statement completed for the apprenticeship application)
- An Apprenticeship Agreement (which will be issued after enrolment on the programme)
- Confirmation of an employment contract (responsibility of the employer)
- Confirmation the apprentice is a new employee (responsibility of the employer, this can include payroll evidence or vacancy and recruitment documentation)