Why is clinical support important? 
Good supervision of all health professionals including clinical pharmacists (CPs) is vitally important to ensure their work is safe, assured and that they feel properly supported and developed in their roles - (+ is a must according to CQC) 
 
‘’Although a bit of time is needed, I found that my discussions with our Practice Pharmacist developed both of us - improving patient safety and care within our practice” - Dr Patel 
 
Pharmacists come with a variety of backgrounds and experiences, and therefore have differing knowledge of primary care and how it works. 
Some pharmacists will need more support than others; it is therefore critical to establish what levels of support are required, especially when they start. 
What are the potential benefits of regular support sessions? 
Who is involved in clinically supervising pharmacists? 
It is recommended each CP should have named: 
GP(s) - who they can contact on any day in practice (e.g. duty doctor) for patient queries (other AHPs may support this). 
GP mentor - for regular reviews and debriefs 
These meetings may start as daily and progress to weekly and monthly over time 
Completes work-based assessments as needed 
The GP may be from practice or the PCN. 
Senior Pharmacist Peer Support - providing 1 to 1 mentoring support and group sessions regularly (normally once a month). 
Who else is involved in support? 
Each new CP is expected to enrol on the CPPE training pathway and will be assigned an Educational Supervisor (normally a pharmacist). 
Practice managers should ensure that appropriate supervision provision is in place. 
Clinical directors are responsible for the overview and monitoring of PCN pharmacists. 
Line managers (from employing organisations) - provide advice as well as take on the legal responsibility of employment. 
CPs are encouraged to join local networks for education and peer support. 
 
This summary document compares the differences between the roles. 
What is needed to ensure good supervision? 
Protected time 
An understanding that the sessions are confidential (unless serious concern) 
Brief written records for 1-to-1 and group kept of agreed learning points and actions 
A supervisor who has reflected on own training needs for role 
Plus: 
Recognition across all the team of its importance in developing staff 
What training is available to support GPs? 
It is strongly recommended that all supervisors of pathway pharmacists complete the: 
What other resources / support is available? 
There are supervision resources and training, e.g. mentoring and providing constructive feedback – all available on the Clinical Supervision webpage. 
 
NATH has also secured funding to support clinical supervision - further details to be provided soon. 
The Clinical Supervision Bulletin #1 can be downloaded here. 
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