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CPD no-show sees pharmacist struck off and 126 at risk

Professional The GPhC has removed one pharmacist from the register and issued a further 126 pharmacists with warnings for failing to submit the minimum nine CPD entries between November 2012 and May 2013

A pharmacist has been struck off the professional register and another 126 face the same punishment for failing to submit their CPD records, the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) has revealed.

The regulator had removed the pharmacist from the register in July and issued another 126 with notices for failing to submit the minimum nine CPD entries since July 2012, it said in its September 2013 issue of its bimonthly publication Regulate, published on Friday (October 4).

Of the 126 registrants, 15 had not responded to the GPhC's initial letter and had therefore been issued with a notice of removal, the regulator said. Another eight who had written back to the regulator outlining why their entry should remain had been given remedial measures, including one referral to a fitness-to-practise hearing for health concerns and one request for further evidence.

It was still assessing cases where registrants had failed to meet CPD requirements up until May 2013, the GPhC added.

Pharmacists who fail to submit the minimum nine CPD entries a year face removal from the register by the GPhC without a fitness-to-practise hearing

More on CPD

Retrospective CPD: the verdict

Does CPD need a re-think?

NI pharmacists could be struck off without hearing over CPD


The GPhC can remove a pharmacist from the register if they fail to respond to a request to submit their CPD record for review by a particular deadline, under rules brought in 2011. Previously this could only be done through fitness-to-practise proceedings.

In total, 14,100 registrants had submitted their CPD entries during the last review period and 373 had received remedial measures for not meeting all the requirements, the GPhC said.

Is nine a realistic number of CPD entries for pharmacists to achieve?

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Marc Opolo, Locum pharmacist

oh damn !!

Calum Nelson, Locum pharmacist

I would find recording CPD a lot easier if I wasn't required to start filling in the entries before I had even started learning. When I want to know something I don't want to have to sit down first and decide on learning objectives and deadlines and planning out all potential methods and weighing up the pros and cons. That stage usually takes about 30 seconds of me deciding to look something up or deciding to go to a course that has been advertised and emailing the relevant people. The GPhC makes it seem like learning anything must be planned as though you can only find the information in one book in the reference section of a library on the moon.

And afterwards you have to give the whole spiel about what you learned and if you met your learning objectives and if you did all your homework and ate all your vegetables and played nicely with the other children.

"My learning objectives were to learn about diabetes. I went to a course about diabetes. I learned more about diabetes but my objective is only partially complete because I still don't know absolutely everything about diabetes. In future I will learn more about diabetes." One down, eight to go.

It's not a difficult task to do, you just have to fill in enough about any 9 random bits of CPD you do each year. The question is why? Obviously it's important to make sure pharmacists are keeping their skills up to scratch, but this system doesn't ensure that. It just makes sure that you're doing 9 bits of learning a year on pretty much anything to do with pharmacy. It doesn't take any account of people's different styles of learning or the total lack of support for most pharmacists to complete these tasks. Any locum will tell you how hard it can be to find out about training events etc in their local area. Not to mention the cost of taking a day off work unpaid.

At school and university I was just required to learn the syllabus. I didn't have to justify to them how I was going to revise for my exams, whether I was considering using highlighters in my notes or whether I'd put sticky tabs on my textbook chapters. Now with the GPhC I have to show that I'm not trying to learn about medicines management by reading the Haynes manual for a 2001 VW Polo.

I'm happy to show what CPD I'm doing but I just don't see the need to break down every aspect from the very first thought of what I need to learn onwards for their benefit. They want to make sure pharmacists know enough? Try sorting out the MPharm first.

Janice Watkins, Non healthcare professional

I have to e-mail Pharmacists with remittances and it shows that they do not take any notice of those e-mails when weeks later they ring me asking for details of a payment that has gone into their own bank a just a couple of days later.

Pharmacist Pharmacist, Community pharmacist

I think its about time the GPhC launched a phone app to make it easy to record CPD rather than using the cumbersome website

David Sarabowski, Locum pharmacist

I have no problem doing the CPD, its the form filling afterwards that gets my goat. I haven't tackled it online at all, I keep hard copies of all my certificates, I've been reviewed once and got criticised for not filling in the forms properly. If I've done the work and kept the hard copy, the question is can I be struck off for not filling intheir online rubbish. The questionaire has clearly been written by someone who has been givena job then has to justify their existence - bit like the GPC really.

Mat Patel, Community pharmacist

Well i haven't received my PJ this weekend, now if the GPhC only sends a postal request then this weekend I may not have got it.. That means Im going to miss my recall notice , which means I have a good chance of being struck off, because they're not going accept my reason: I did not receive the postall notice... !
How sad ...


How about "BIg up ya self" for those that passed . Why the negative vibes.....
1/14100 equates to 0.00709%....


Most people I know just copy each other by changing a few words here and there......

It's something the GPHC can show the government that it's introduced


That's what i did and scored 94%

come on you gooners........!!!!!!!!!!

Sue Swift, Pharmaceutical Adviser

Thats amazing for a Non healthcare professional


My middle name..Amazing :)

Reeyah H, Community pharmacist

Is it just me or is the CPD page really boring to fill in on the GPhC site?! Really cumbersome, and looks so old fashioned. It reminds of the basic IT programmes I used to formulate on my Commodore 64!

Stephen Eggleston, Community pharmacist

Having had CPD in place for several years now, I struggle to understand why pharmacists are unable to complete the minimum 9 entries. I have yet to be called for review but feel confident that, should any of my entries not be of the required standard, the GPhC will give guidance to help make keep the correct quality of entry. We all encounter things every day which count as CPD - it's just about writing it down!

Morven - Jayne .s. Kirk,

I agree, I was called for review in 2012 and after the initial panick managed to get everything submitted on time. I now regularly plan CPD .

As a medicines information pharmacist, I consider the majority of my job to be CPD. If I had to document everything on the clunky, lengthy CPD website, I would be reduced to a gibbering wreck within minutes.

Likewise when I was working long, hard days in community, then coming home and doing 2.5 hours revision for a PEBC exam, I was doing an awful lot of CPD. I barely had time to eat, sleep and wash, never mind record it.

Mr CAUSTIC, Community pharmacist

i know 3 pharmacists that have not received their journal this week. when i rang the pj they said they had no more complaints than normal so they did nott think there was a problem. i think the gphc should email as well as post their request for cpd submission. post is always going astray in my area.

K Patel, Community pharmacist

i trust they send an email as well as a letter re submission. if the letter gets lost in the post one might not know you have to submit them. a lot of post gets lost in this area

E simon, Community pharmacist

Apparently, they do not send you an email, only a letter. I enquired about this before setting off travelling abroad for six months, and was told that all I could do to check was to log on to myGPhC regularly, to see if my CPD was being called in... But I'm not sure what I'm looking for...?

Michael Stewart, Community pharmacist

There is nothing at all obvious on MyGPhC regarding call and review (just checked) - we can only assume that if you have been called there is a prominent notice/warning when you log in.

[email protected], Community pharmacist

Lucky we have the students coming thru to replace them isn't it !!!

Crazy that people can be struck off for not tick boxing some forms. Actually not that crazy, just damned typical of our representative bodies.

Keith Seston, Other pharmacist

GPHC are not a representative body and if you cannot comply with this regulation perhaps you have chosen the wrong profession

Michael Stewart, Community pharmacist

I totally agree Keith, there really is no excuse for not completing this minor administrative burden. Every pharmacist must learn something new at least weekly, if not daily. We are just asked to write about 9 of those things. I know CPD is a scary word, but there is so much support out there to help us complete it, how can anyone allow themselves to be struck off over this?

My only concern is maybe the call and review notification is not robust enough if it is relying on Royal Mail alone. You could be struck off for not receiving a letter......

Amal England, Public Relations

Keith, on the contrary, it is the GPhC that is in the wrong profession. I am all for striking off those that don't make the grade or prove their grade. But I don't think the GPhC should have the authority to strike off any pharmacist in the current climate whereby the government and medical groups and multiple slowly suck out the professional and financial element from our line of work under the full backing of the GPhC. The GPhC is a cowboy, it's lost the plot,

Keith Seston, Other pharmacist

GPhC is not a representative body for Pharmacists.If you have an issue with "medical groups and multiple slowly suck out the professional and financial element from our line of work" join a union such as the PDA and stand up to those who are damaging the profession.Unfortunately unless you become more vocal things will carry on as they are

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