Journal of Pharmacy Management - Jul 2021

Journal of Pharmacy Management • Volume 37 • Issue 3 • July 2021 improve peer support for isolated practitioners, and this has been highlighted particularly during the pandemic where social distancing measures have restrictednetworking opportunities. Virtual platforms and networking apps were used to communicate with colleagues and seek advice. • Clinical support It was recognised that ECP need to be supported in more complex or challenging clinical roles, but this is not always possible. “…we had these challenges, people will come and say can we put a new pharmacist responsible for this ward and I should have said, well, if we don't, well who is going to cover that ward because we haven't got, you know, loads of people that can… Having said that, you know there are some very specialist areas that we wouldn't put a brand-new person in” • Supervision The role of an educational supervisor was said to be an important component of support for ECP. Supervisors can provide 1:1 tailored support to individuals and escalate areas of concern. Underpinning this however is the need for supervisors to have the appropriate skills and training to provide this effectively. “I've got other people who are supporting the training and I have noticed that. Sometimes there's a little bit of over expectation about what these people can do when they come to us [ECP on rotation to a specialist setting], and I don't know whether it's because the trainor/trainers that we have perhaps haven't got that breadth of experience of understanding” Flexibility and inclusivity It was acknowledged across all sectors that pharmacists who may need working adjustments may struggle to transition into another role or sector. On-call, weekend and shift working were seen to be a barrier for this sub- group in some sectors. Motivation was alsomentioned as a key attribute influencing pharmacists’ success in moving into a sector, in relation to their ability to learn outside of working hours. This may be difficult for pharmacists who are unable to commit any additional learning time outside of core working hours. “she would say I don’t have a computer so I can’t learn about these things, I have childcare issues, she wasn’t your traditional pharmacist that qualifies” Often pharmacists who need flexible working hours find this possible in community sector where they can work on a locum basis. Cross sector experience Cross sector experience was discussed in detail and examples of placements and rotation patterns were evident between all sectors. It was noted that cross sector placements between hospital and community were not as common as other combinations and the reasons for this were suggested as opportunistic. It was clear that cross sector experience helped to gain familiarity with other sectors, and this therefore made transition easier. Cross sector placements and rotation feedback were often said to be highly positive and of great value. This corresponds with reports found in the North School of Pharmacy andMedicines Optimisation Visit report. 7 Portfolio working was highlighted as a positive promoter to increase staff recruitment and retention. It was noted that as well as providing educational and experiential benefits to ECP, employers also gained benefit from creation of these links. They reported that ECP gained transferrable skills such as providing better transfer of care and having more awareness of the patients journey across the wider care system. ECP also bring experiences and knowledge from other sectors into the host placement which promotes cross sector learning. It was suggested that locumwork within a community pharmacy may be undertaken primarily for financial reasons and not for educational benefit. This pattern of working however supports the workforce flexibility. It was noted that this is often undertaken by those who already have had experience of working in community as it may be easier for them to transition into this role as they have prior experience within this sector. Familiarity Lack of familiarity was noted to hinder transition and provide a challenge for ECP moving into new roles. This involved a lack of familiarity with multiple elements including: • Environment • Role 88

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