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NHSE backs £1.5m scheme to ‘expand’ London MPharm placements

Students on the new scheme backed by £1.5 million in funding will be assigned to “experiential placement sites across London”, including care homes and mental health trusts, one London university announced. 

Three London universities will “work together to standardise and expand pharmacy undergraduate placements across the capital”, Kingston University revealed last week (April 10).

The university will work with University College London and King's College London on the “pan-London project aimed at students on the four-year MPharm course”, it said.

The £1.5 million scheme, fully funded by NHS England (NHSE), will ensure that “all students” across the three schools “are on a level-playing field when graduating and going into the workplace”, it added.

The university said that this will be achieved by “a consistency of placement experience with the same standards and quality assurance processes across London”.

“Much of the project will be completed and in place for the start of the 2024/25 academic year,” it added.


“Experiential” placements


The project “is also set to expand the number and variety of experiential placement sites across London”, Kingston University said.

The new placements, which will be offered at “care homes, mental health trusts, hospitals, GP surgeries and community pharmacies”, will allow MPharm students to “undertake the increased weeks of placements and become prescriber ready”.

From 2025/26, independent prescribing is set to form part of the curriculum for all trainee pharmacists.

“The greater capacity of placement providers will help to make sure all three universities can liaise with their teaching and placement timetables,” Kingston University said.

This will stop students from “competing for the same providers at the same time” and “allow students to get a greater breadth of vital first-hand experience”, it added.

Students will also have “e-portfolios” that “will be signed off by supervisors in a more efficient, sustainable and streamlined way”, it said.

The e-portfolios will be accessible on students’ “smartphones and tablets, rather than the current way of having to document everything in a paper logbook,” it added.

And all three universities will provide “training to supervisors at all placement providers to ensure that every student is assessed in a consistent and unified way”, Kingston University added.

Last month, C+D reported that the need for designated prescribing practitioners (DPPs) to take on trainees in the 2025/26 cohort had led Well Pharmacy to slash its trainee numbers by 75% in England.

Well told C+D that the new requirement has seen the multiple only able to offer “less than 30” placements in England.

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