Historic partnership heralds new international advanced pharmacy practice model

Progress towards transnational parity of advanced pharmacy practice has taken a significant step forward with the signing of a historic agreement between the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS; UK) and the Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Australia (SHPA).

The new agreement – as detailed in SHPA’s flagship publication the Journal of Pharmacy Practice and Research and RPS’ Pharmaceutical Journal – will see the RPS and the SHPA collaborating to deliver quality-assured education, training and development opportunities mapped to pharmacist career stages in the UK and Australia, including mutually accredited, two-year advanced practice specialist residencies for pharmacists across a range of practice areas.

Professor Michael Dooley, President of SHPA says in Australia, accreditation of advanced practice residency sites will begin next year.

‘Building a workforce that can deliver a high standard of care across different settings and sectors – hospitals, community, care homes or general practice – while drawing on advanced knowledge of how to best manage complex patient needs is a shared goal of RPS and SHPA.

‘We look forward to progressing this initiative with applications opening in October 2018 and the first intake of pharmacists to SHPA's Advanced Practice Residences taking place in 2019.’

Catherine Duggan, Director at RPS says the partnership acknowledges research on international workforce co-development recently published in the International Journal of Pharmacy Practice.

‘Working together will allow us to share expertise across defined areas of pharmacy practice, delivering mutually beneficial programmes and services.

‘Previous work by the International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) has shown that, at foundation level, there exists a common set of practice-related competencies that are globally applicable[1].’

Professor Dooley says the progress of the partnership will build on the early career Residency Program launched in Australia by SHPA this year, and will provide the model for advanced practice residencies for the future.  

‘We look forward to progressing this exciting initiative over the next two years, broadening opportunities for Australian pharmacists who will have their SHPA credentials automatically recognised in the UK, via the RPS, and vice versa.

‘By committing to developing mutually accredited training and development programmes we believe we can build a transformational model that could be adopted across many countries in the future.’

[1] [1]‘Transnational comparability of advanced pharmacy practice developmental frameworks: A country-level crossover mapping study’’.  Udoh, A., Bruno, A., Bates, I., Galbraith, K.  Int. J. Pharm. Prac. 2017 (in press).

For more information on the RPS-SHPA partnership, contact Kristin Michaels, SHPA Chief Executive

For more information on SHPA Specialty Practice, contact Suzanne Newman, SHPA Member Liaison

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Media coverage

Read more: ‘Why pharmacists need advanced practice specialist residences: the UK–Australia story’, The Pharmaceutical Journal, Wednesday 23 May 2017.