Advanced Training Residency

Are you ready to take the next step? SHPA is currently developing its Advanced Training Residency (ATR) Program, the next stage in structured and accredited national training programs for hospital pharmacists.

Consultation on the Common ATR Framework has now closed. The ATRs were launched at Medicines Management 2019 (MM2019), the 45th SHPA National Conference. 

What does the program offer Residents?

Ideal for practitioners with 3–7 years of foundation hospital experience, this two-year program will give Residents the opportunity to:

How will the program be structured?

SHPA has developed a core framework which will support development across all practice areas. It was made available to SHPA members for consultation in September 2019.

The core framework includes:

  • an outline of the core features pharmacy departments require in order to deliver an ATR pathway
  • activities and workplace-based assessments to support and demonstrate the Resident’s attainment of the required knowledge, skills, experience and behaviours to practice at a level equivalent to Advancing – Stage II
  • tools and templates to support the program.

Access the ATR Common Framework and Evaluation and Assessment Matrix.
Links to tools and templates - coming soon.

Practice Area Pathways

The ATR program will launch with an initial four model Practice Area Pathways:

  1. Oncology and Haematology
  2. Geriatric Medicine
  3. Medicines Information
  4. Critical Care

Further pathways will be developed in 2020, however hospitals may deliver their own training ATR program in practice areas outside these pathways by adapting SHPA’s core framework.

How do I become an Advanced Training Resident?

Your first step is to obtain a position in an accredited workplace with an SHPA-approved ATR pathway. SHPA does not allocate or appoint Residents. Some sites advertise Advanced Training Residency positions specifically, others appoint Residents from a pool of existing staff members.

If you are an Advanced Training Resident, click here to register with SHPA. Registration provides you access to a suite of resources and tools through SHPA’s Residency Program Hub (see 'Resources and tools')


What is the SHPA Advanced Training Residency (ATR) program?

SHPA’s two-year Advanced Training Residency (ATR) program is targeted towards pharmacists with general foundation level expertise and experience in hospital practice seeking to advance their practice towards the APPF Consolidation Level (Advancing – Stage II) and provide expert care and service delivery in their defined practice area.

 Who is the ATR program for?

The ATR program is idea for pharmacists with three to seven years of foundation hospital experience. Prospective Advanced Training (AT) Residents may have:

  • Completed an SHPA Foundation Residency, or

  • Obtained Stage I Advancing Practice credentialing with a minimum of 2 years’ hospital pharmacy experience, or

  • Equivalent experience, defined as at least 2 years post-registration hospital pharmacy experience, in an environment that provides suitable broad foundation experience for the relevant ATR practice area.

Pharmacists with more than seven years of experience may also be suitable for an ATR if they are moving into a defined or specialised area of practice that is new for them.

Pharmacists may be interested in undertaking an ATR program if they:

  • Have prior experience in a defined practice area and are seeking to specialise or advance their practice, or

  • Have been recently recruited to a senior pharmacist/leadership role without significant experience in the area and are in a position to undertake an ATR program to support their professional practice and development in their new role (the workplace may design an ATR program specifically for the pharmacist and their new appointment).      

The above reasons are examples only. SHPA anticipates there will be other circumstances to which an ATR is suited.

 What pharmacist roles are suited to ATRs?

Each ATR must have a defined practice area which can be generalist or specialist in scope. Pharmacy departments developing their ATR programs should align any specialty areas to the SHPA Specialty Practice Streams ( It is up to the individual pharmacy departments to determine the ATR pathways they wish to implement (based on organisational needs) and the recruitment processes.

How will the program be structured?

Each individual’s ATR will be based upon one of the following documents:

  • SHPA ATR Common Framework: This is a generic developmental pathway that can be adapted to any practice area

  • SHPA Practice Area Framework and Knowledge Guide: This is a suite of documents that contextualizes and expands the Common Framework to defined practice areas

The SHPA ATR Common Framework can be applied to any ATR practice area to facilitate advancement. Where an ATR pathway maps to an existing SHPA model Practice Area Framework and Knowledge Guide, these should be used in lieu of the Common Framework to inform and develop the local ATR.

Advanced Training (AT) Residents may not necessarily have defined rotations – their workplan will align strongly with the defined practice area and have a minimum of 18 months of the two-year program spent in a working environment directly linked to this area. AT Residents will also be supported by a pharmacist mentor (Advanced Training Mentor) with expert practice in the area and have input from an external mentor (e.g. specialist medical practitioner, senior nursing staff, etc) to provide external support and insight into their role and performance.

Assessment and evaluation of Resident performance development over time will be in accordance with the evaluation tools outlined in the SHPA Advanced Training Residency evaluation and assessment matrix.

 Who can be Advanced Training Mentors?

The Advanced Training (AT) Mentor for a given ATR pathway is required to demonstrate performance at Advancing – Stage II (Consolidation Level) or above in a practice area highly relevant to the ATR. If Advancing Practice credentialing has not been obtained, the proposed mentor will need to submit evidence demonstrating equivalent experience, which will be assessed by SHPA for approval.

The AT Mentor is likely to be a senior pharmacist currently engaged in the practice area within the organisation, who will be directly supervising the AT Resident. One AT Mentor may provide support to more than one AT Resident if appropriate and practicable. If the organisation does not have a suitable senior pharmacist to lead the AT Resident, a mentor can be identified from another health network in Australia (preferably within the same state). Any sites unable to identify a suitable mentor should contact the SHPA for guidance.

 Still have questions?

Please refer to the FAQs – SHPA Residency Programs for more information or contact



Apr 2019SHPA commences development of the ATR Common Framework and Tools
Aug 2019

SHPA recruits three specialist pharmacists to assist with developing the following ATR Practice Area Pathways:

  • Geriatric Medicine
  • Cancer Services
  • Medicines Information
Oct 2019

ATR Common Framework and Tools released to SHPA members for consultation

Specialist pharmacists developing knowledge guides and contextualised frameworks for their specific ATR Practice Area Pathways with input from Specialty Practice Leadership Committees

SHPA reviewing accreditation standards and application process for Residency Programs. New standards will be comprised of:

  1. Residency – Core Accreditation
  2. Program Approval:
  • Foundation Residency 
  • Advanced Training Residency pathways
Nov 2019Advanced Training Residencies launch at the MM2019 conference
Dec 2019Applications for ATR pathways open to hospitals


Specialty Practice Area Framework Development Timeline

By June 2020

Critical Care
General Medicine
Paediatrics & Neonatology

By September - December 2020

Infectious Diseases

By December 2020

Emergency Medicine
Medication Safety
Pain Management
Surgery & Perioperative Medicine

By June 2021

Dispensing & Distribution
Leadership & Management
Mental Health

By December 2021

Compounding Services
Education & Training
Electronic Medication Management
Rural & Remote

In 2022

Clinical Trials
Palliative Care
Transitions of Care & Primary Care
Women's & Newborn Health