The General Pharmaceutical Council, the pharmacy regulator, is appealing to all pharmacy technicians who have taken time off to have children or are working overseas to get in touch.
From 1 July 2011, it will be a legal requirement for pharmacy technicians to be registered with the GB regulator and it wants to make sure experienced professionals don’t miss their chance to register under special arrangements which end on 30 June 2011. After this time, many may need to start from scratch to work as a pharmacy technician in Great Britain.
The Council says compulsory registration strengthens patient protection by ensuring only those who are properly trained and under a duty to maintain high standards are able to support pharmacists with the billion or so prescriptions dispensed in Great Britain every year.
Duncan Rudkin, GPhC chief executive, said: “There’s never been a statutory register of this professional group before, so it’s very difficult to know how many technicians are out there and not currently working. We know that the majority of pharmacy technicians are women, so if they have taken time off to have children, for example, we want them to be aware of this deadline. It is important that if women are thinking of returning to practise in the near future they should consider joining the register before the deadline.”
Details of registered pharmacy technicians are available to check online, along with those of pharmacists and pharmacy premises www.pharmacyregulation.org.