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New global report details trend in advanced roles for pharmacists

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Dusseldorf • 1 October 2015

The first ever international overview of the extent of the advanced and specialised roles that pharmacists are undertaking, and the mechanisms supporting these developments, was presented at the World Congress of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences today. The information is contained in a new report, “Advanced practice and specialisation in pharmacy: Global report”, produced by the International Pharmaceutical Federation Education Initiative (FIPEd).

“Around the world, pharmacists’ roles are becoming more diversified. Some countries are recognising this by area of specialty practice in a sector or clinical area, others are identifying advanced performance using evidence-driven, developmental frameworks; so there are a variety of means to recognise practice beyond that seen at initial registration,” said co-author Kirstie Galbraith.

The report gives access to information from 48 countries and territories, including case studies that outline trends in policy development related to advanced and specialised roles, such as the development of national definitions, criteria and professional recognition systems. For example, in over 40% of the countries, formal post-nominal credentials are available to recognise an advanced or specialist pharmacy practitioner. Mandated requirements for pharmacists to have achieved a formal level of advancement or specialism in order to provide some services are also emerging. In Switzerland, for instance, it will soon be mandatory for pharmacists in charge of a community or hospital pharmacy to hold a recognised post-registration title.

Almost 60% of countries have frameworks for advanced and specialised practice either available or in development, the report reveals. “Assurance of competency that is commensurate with advanced practice is a clear message to civil society that pharmacists possess this expertise. This report contains the most comprehensive collection of data relating to advanced and specialised roles, and countries can use it in their professional workforce development,” Ms Galbraith said.

The report serves as important information for the World Health Organization and its work on transformative education for health professionals. “The information contained in this report is vital to help identify workforce needs that directly impact on universal health coverage and the achievement of targets such as the millennium and sustainable development goals. This is all in the interest of patients, health systems and the profession,” added Professor Ian Bates, co-author of the report.


Notes for editors

FULL REPORT: “Advanced practice and specialisation in pharmacy: Global report” is available here.

ABOUT FIP: The International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) is the global federation of national associations of pharmacists and pharmaceutical scientists, and is a non-governmental organisation in official relations with the World Health Organization. With 132 member organisations FIP represents more than three million experts in medicines, supporting the responsible use of medicines around the world.

ABOUT FIPEd: FIPEd brings together all of FIP’s education actions. Its purpose is to ensure that education and training provides the foundation for developing pharmaceuticals, pharmaceutical services and the profession in order to meet societal needs for medicines expertise.

ABOUT the World Congress of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences: The 75th annual World Congress of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences is being held in Düsseldorf, Germany, from 29 September to 3 October.


Lin-Nam Wang, communications manager,
International Pharmaceutical Federation
Tel +31 70 302 1987

Last update 5 July 2018

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