This means that an additional 3,332 pharmacists, as well as an extra 2,909 pharmacy technicians, will be able to return to work while the virus rages, the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) announced today (March 27).
It comes after health secretary Matt Hancock asked the regulator to use its “emergency powers…to rapidly register pharmacy professionals to assist in the national response to the current emergency”, the GPhC said.
The temporary register includes those who had voluntary removed themselves from the register or had been removed by the GPhC for non-renewal and did not have fitness-to-practise issues over the past three years. Those eligible for re-registration were given the chance to opt out, the regulator said.
The new temporary workforce will have to adhere to the regulator’s standards for pharmacy professionals, it stressed.
"A significant difference"
GPhC CEO Duncan Rudkin thanked those who had chosen to re-register and provide help to the sector, which is under “significant pressure” because of the outbreak.
“Their contribution will make a significant difference in the response to this pandemic,” he said.
Yesterday (March 27), the GPhC announced it was postponing both of 2020’s registration exams and, alongside the Pharmaceutical Society of Northern Ireland, is looking into granting “a form of provisional registration” for current pre-registration trainees.