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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
Course Details
Online Course Cost
Contact us for current employer contributions
12 Month Minimum Duration
European Social Fund


NHS SBS Approved Framwork Supplier

We are experiencing high demand for apprenticeship enrolments currently, please click here to understand more about how the enrolment process works and the timescales involved to enrol an apprentice.


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 or pharmacy technician
  • Learners must have a right to work and abode in the UK and meet residency eligibility rules:
    • If a UK national, learners must have been ordinarily resident in the UK or EEA for at least the previous three years
    • If an EEA national in the UK, learners must be able to provide evidence that they have obtained either pre-settled or settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme and have been ordinarily resident in the EEA, Gibraltar or the UK for at least the previous three years
    • If a non-UK national, the learner must be able to provide evidence that they have permission from the UK government to live in the UK (not for educational purposes) and have been ordinarily resident in the UK for at least the previous three 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 (maximum 45 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 assessed on an individual basis by specialist tutors
  • 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 will 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.
  • Learners must meet the pre screening criteria in relation to: health and character, current ability and current level of maths, English and science knowledge
  • Learners must have a Workplace Training Supervisor in place for the duration of the programme

Buttercups Training has direct contracts with the Education and Skills Funding Agency to access funding for the Pharmacy Services Assistant apprenticeship.

Levy-Paying Employers

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

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 read the following information pages on the two pharmacy apprenticeship we offer:


Level 2 Pharmacy Assistant Services Apprenticeship
Level 3 Pharmacy Technician Apprenticeship


There are enquiry forms on each page if you would like further information on recruiting or training an apprentice, or would like to start the enrolment process for an apprentice.


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
Level 2 Pharmacy Services Assistant Standard Dispensing Assistant Course (GPhC accredited and equivalent to level two)
Pharmacy Technician (Integrated) Pharmacy Technician Training Programme

Further information on these alternatives including costs and durations, can be accessed via the above links.

Course Features
Functional Skills - developing important Maths and English skills
Regular contact at least every 9-12 weeks for a formal review with adjusted target setting