NHS priorities

Whether it’s to prepare for the next Pharmacy Quality 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

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Palliative care may be challenging issue for you to deal with as a pharmacist, but it is inevitable that you will have patients that are nearing the end of their life. You may not know how to talk to someone who is in the last days of life and you may be unsure of how to approach their carers. This page will help you to gain confidence in having these difficult discussions and allow you to develop your consultations skills so that you can treat these patients and their carers and families with respect and dignity.

CPPE have a number of resources to allow you to broaden your knowledge on this subject. If you prefer learning as part of a group then we have workshops or you could visit the palliative care floor on theLearningpharmacy website. There are also some learning resources you can download from the CPPE website if you prefer. To give you the full picture we also signpost you to some external content that will give you a broader understanding of palliative care treatments.

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The aim of this programme is to support pharmacy professionals to provide an appropriate person-centred pharmaceutical service for people during palliative care, and for their carers.

To facilitate your learning, we have structured the course into six units. Some units are larger than others, but we estimate that you will need to commit an average of three hours of learning for each unit.

  • Unit 1 – Setting the scene
  • Unit 2 – Consultation skills in palliative care
  • Unit 3 – Management of pain
  • Unit 4 – Management of non-pain symptoms
  • Unit 5 – End of life care
  • Unit 6 – Palliative care pharmacy services


24h:00m (for events this includes pre and post event learning)


Learning Outcomes:

On completion of all aspects of this learning programme you should be able to:
  • describe what palliative care is and how national guidance has influenced palliative care services
  • communicate confidently with people and their carers regarding palliative care, respecting their wishes and responding when things go wrong
  • support the management of key symptoms that people might experience during palliative care and at the end of life
  • identify the palliative care multidisciplinary team in your local area and their respective roles
  • explain the role of the pharmacy professional in the care of people who are accessing palliative care within national priorities
  • respond to issues raised with the supply of medicines and products for palliative care without compromising person-centred care.
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Pharmacy professionals may be drawn into or have to initiate various difficult discussions. This 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 Outcomes:

On completion of all aspects of this learning programme you should be able to:

  • idenitfy examples of discussions that are difficult for both you and your patients or service users
  • reflect on how your own values, attitudes and beliefs affect how you deal with dicussions you find difficult
  • describe how developing your resilience can support you in dealing with difficult discussions
  • identify barriers to effective communication in difficult discussions and find strategies to make this easier
  • undertake difficult discussions with patients and service users using relevant consultation skills models.
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Professional curriculum to support members with the knowledge, skills, experience and behaviours to advance in their practice.

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e-Learning for Healthcare programmes on End of Life Care to enhance training and education of health and social care workforce

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Communications training for professionals working in emotionally-charged settings.

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Pharmacists need to understand the range of medicine support that they and their teams can provide to palliative care patients and their caregivers.

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Pharmacists are becoming increasingly involved in palliative care and can be a source of important information and support for patients at the end of life. Health professionals caring for patients with advanced illness should develop skills for communicating with patients, and their families and carers.

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Opioids are commonly administered as part of end-of-life care. Pharmacists should know how to select, initiate and optimise opioids to best meet patient needs.

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This e-assessment is linked with the CPPE Fundamentals of palliative care programme and assesses you on the learning outcomes within that programme.


Why should I do this assessment?

This e-assessment completes the learning you began with the CPPE Fundamentals of palliative care 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 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.
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The standards provide a free, evidence-based framework with continuous learning and simple quality improvement steps. They will help your pharmacy team to gradually build on their existing palliative care provision.

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Read expert information, knowledge and support to help you deliver the best possible care for people living with a terminal illness.

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The monthly updated Palliative Care Formulary online provides essential independent information for health professionals about drugs in palliative and hospice care. It includes unlicensed (unlabelled) indications and routes, and details about the administration of drugs by continuous subcutaneous infusion.

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A free learning resource for healthcare professionals.

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Hospice UK’s Dying Matters campaign is working with you to create an open culture in which we’re comfortable talking about death, dying and grief.

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