Health Education England (HEE) has announced 67 funded places across two programmes for pharmacy technicians to develop their leadership skills.

In line with the NHS’ Pharmacy technician and pharmacy support staff workforce development strategy, HEE has announced 55 funded places on the Mary Seacole Programme and 12 places on the Rosalind Franklin programme.

The Mary Seacole programme is open to ‘first-time leaders’ who have responsibility for people and services – for instance, pharmacy technicians who line-manage staff, supervise trainees, manage a dispensary day-to-day, co-ordinate rotas, manage projects, liaise with different healthcare professionals or initiate or contribute to change in the workplace.

Meanwhile, the Rosalind Franklin programme is open to mid-level leaders who aspire to lead large and complex programmes, departments, services or systems.

Helen Porter, pharmacy dean at HEE, said: ‘It is so important that for the pharmacy workforce as a whole that these opportunities are available. It recognises the need for a cohort of senior pharmacy technician leaders and the vital contribution they make to patients and health care systems.

‘The Pharmacy Technician and Pharmacy Support Staff Workforce Development Strategy demonstrated the value of post-registration opportunities and these funded places are a response to that.’

Claire Steele, President of the Association of Pharmacy Technicians UK (APTUK) encouraged employers to support pharmacy technicians to undertake this opportunity.

'This is a small step in helping the pharmacy technician workforce in England to develop their skills and advance their careers. We hope to see many more opportunities become available for pharmacy technicians to achieve their full potential now and in the future,' she said, adding that APTUK 'continues to call for equity of access to post registration education and training opportunities for pharmacy technicians'.

Applicants must also be a GPhC registered pharmacy technician working in any sector in England, and be least two years post-qualification.

They must also have, as a minimum:

  • The support of their line manager
  • Availability to attend the mandatory study days
  • Evidence that they meet the eligibility criteria
  • Commitment to use the leadership skills within their area of competence and expertise, for the delivery of NHS services as they emerge

Applicants must apply by midnight on 10 January 2023, and successful applicants will be notified on the week commencing 16 January 2023.