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



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.


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 Objectives:

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.

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


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

The individual floors on this resource may not have been updated for more than 12 months. The next review of this resource will take place in 2023. When working through the hotspot activities on each floor, you should make sure that you are using the most up-to-date guidance and resources available in order to support both you and your team effectively.

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

Communications training for professionals working in emotionally-charged settings.


This e-assessment is linked with the CPPE Fundamentals of palliative care 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 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.
external resource

Dying Matters is a coalition of 12,000 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.


A free learning resource for healthcare professionals.


From 2 - 6 May 2022, communities across the country will come together to talk about death, dying and bereavement.

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