NHS priorities

Whether it’s to prepare for the next Quality Payments Scheme deadline, or to increase your confidence in helping people with a learning disability, this section provides topic-specific pages that link to current NHS priorities. This section will support you in keeping your knowledge and skills up to date in order to provide high-quality pharmacy services and be service-ready.

Clinical pharmacy

Our clinical portfolio is expanding on a frequent basis, helping you to advance your knowledge and skills and deliver medicines optimisation in practice for all sectors of pharmacy. From two new focal points a year to our small group learning for hospital pharmacists – Optimise – this section focuses on clinical pharmacy, diseases and therapeutics.

Public health

The public health agenda is embedded in pharmacy, yet topics such as emergency contraception or stop smoking support are as prevalent as ever. As well as our public health workshops, use this section to access a wide range of resources to assure and maintain your competence, all underpinned by the Declaration of Competence system.

Palliative care


This programme focuses on symptoms associated with conditions requiring palliative care management and treatments to manage these symptoms, as well as reflecting on how you can impact on end-of-life conditions.


5h:00m (for events this includes pre and post event learning)

Learning Objectives:

On completion of all aspects of this learning programme you should be able to:
  • explain the aims and approaches of palliative care
  • describe the aetiology of common palliative care symptoms and emergencies and their management strategies
  • advise healthcare professionals about appropriate opioid dose conversions
  • advise healthcare professionals about medicine compatibilities in syringe drivers
  • engage with patients/carers to discuss their condition, choice of medicines, duration and withdrawal of treatment
  • recognise the main sources of psychological distress in patients who have entered the palliative care stage in the course of their illness
  • explain the benefits of a multidisciplinary approach to palliative care pain and symptom management
  • contribute to advanced care planning provision in your local area
  • signpost family members/carers for further advice and support.

This learning programme will help pharmacy professionals to contribute to the delivery of high quality care for palliative patients, including patients with cancer and other terminal illnesses. The programme provides the background knowledge needed to implement a medicines management service in palliative care and provide advice to support patients who are receiving palliative care and their family and carers.

14h:00m (for events this includes pre and post event learning)

Learning Objectives:

On completion of al aspects of this programme you should be able to:
  • define palliative care
  • appreciate the patient and carer’s viewpoint of palliative care
  • state the main symptoms experienced by patients in the palliative phase of an illness
  • outline the pharmaceutical care issues relevant to the management of patients with pain, using the WHO analgesic ladder
  • list and describe the treatment for the non-pain symptoms encountered in palliative care
  • describe the main palliative care models of co-ordinated care.

Pharmacy staff may be drawn into or have to initiate various difficult discussions. Dealing with difficult discussions e-learning programme builds on CPPE’s basic communication and consultation skills learning programmes to help staff undertake more difficult discussions with patients and others.

6h:00m (for events this includes pre and post event learning)

Learning Objectives:

On completion of all aspects of this learning programme you should be able to:
  • identify discussions that are potentially difficult for you or the patient
  • reflect on your own values, attitudes and beliefs and recognise how these may affect how you deal with certain discussions
  • identify barriers to effective communication in difficult discussions and find strategies to make this easier
  • reflect on and plan strategies for conducting competent consultations on a broad range of difficult discussions.
external resource

Why consultation skills are important for all pharmacy professionals


This e-assessment is linked with the CPPE Palliative care focal point programme and assesses you on the learning objectives within that programme.

Why should I do this assessment?

This e-assessment completes the learning you began with the CPPE Palliative care focal point programme. Access and successful completion will contribute to your own personal development plan, be recorded in your My CPPE record and will enable you to complete a CPD entry on the learning. It may also provide evidence for achieving competencies in the RPS Foundation or Advanced Pharmacy Frameworks. If you are working towards completing a Declaration of Competence for a pharmacy service, successful completion of this assessment will provide evidence of your learning.

Work your way around the Palliative care learning topic, taking part in bite-sized interactive challenges that will help you and your team support patients with the management of pain, fatigue, mouth problems and other common side-effects of palliative care.

You can access this learning here: Palliative care - theLearningpharmacy.com

Learning Objectives:

On completion of all aspects of this learning programme you should be able to:
  • provide advice and signposting on self-care and public health
  • explain how you would develop and deliver a successful pharmacy service
  • support a person presenting with a new prescription
  • describe how to advise appropriately a patient requesting an OTC medicine
  • identify and meet the professional development needs of the pharmacy team.
external resource

Our objective is 'to increase awareness of death with a view to helping people make the most of their (finite) lives'.

external resource

Dying Matters is a coalition of 32,000 members across England and Wales which aims to help people talk more openly about dying, death and bereavement, and to make plans for the end of life.

external resource

Communications training for professionals working in emotionally-charged settings.

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