Pharmacy in Northern Ireland is a healthcare profession for which registration with the Pharmaceutical Society NI is a requirement to practise. To achieve registration an individual must meet the following criteria.
- Successful completion of a Master of Pharmacy Degree (MPharm), at an accredited UK university.
- Successful completion of one year’s pre-registration training overseen by our Pre-Registration Department. Starting in 2021/22, as part of the reform to the initial education and training of pharmacists, pre-registration training is changing to a ‘Foundation training Year’ operated by NICPLD. Further information is available on our Foundation Training Year page.
- Successful completion of the Pharmaceutical Society NI’s registration assessment.
- Meeting the fitness to practise requirements for registration as a pharmacist.
As part of the registration process, applicants have to make a self declaration of health and character checks are carried out.
There are alternatives routes of registration for pharmacists first registered in GB and in the EEA
Accredited MPharm degrees
The Pharmaceutical Society NI in conjunction with the GPhC accredit pharmacy courses in the two Northern Ireland Universities and accepts the GPhC accreditation of Universities in GB.
A full list of accredited Universities is available here.
Accreditation is the process in accordance with which a course of education and training for registrants or those in training to become registrants of the Pharmaceutical Society NI is approved.
Future pharmacists: standards for the initial education and training of pharmacists in Great Britain (GPhC, 2011) sets out the initial education and training standards for pharmacists training in Great Britain and Standards for the education and training of non-EEA pharmacists wanting to register in Great Britain (GPhC, 2011) is the companion document for non-EEA pharmacists. These standards have been adopted by the Pharmaceutical Society for use in Northern Ireland.
The accreditation of pharmacy courses leading to registration and annotation in Great Britain (GPhC, 2011) sets out the criteria and standards the GPhC will apply to providers who seek to offer an accredited course or an approved qualification or course. These criteria and standards have been adopted by the Pharmaceutical Society for use in Northern Ireland.
The accreditation process itself involves peer review, site visits, provider self assessment and public reports. Course providers must periodically submit for reaccreditation.
(a) The GPhC and Pharmaceutical Society NI jointly accredit courses leading to registration and annotation in Northern Ireland.
(b) The GPhC accredits and recognises courses leading to registration and annotation in England, Scotland and Wales.
(a) Joint Pharmaceutical Society NI/GPhC accreditation teams undertake accreditation assessments in Northern Ireland and make recommendations to the our Council regarding accreditation.
(b) In Great Britain, accreditation teams undertake accreditation assessments on behalf of the GPhC.
(c) A Pharmaceutical Society NI observer may attend Great Britain accreditation visits and make recommendations regarding accreditation matters.
See the list of accreditation Panel members
University Accreditation Reports
Accreditation reports for the two Northern Ireland Universities can be viewed below:
- Ulster University MPharm reaccreditation May 2015 REPORT
- Ulster University Interim report March 2018
- Ulster University Master of Pharmacy (MPharm) degree interim – event report, April 2021
- QUB MPharm reaccreditation May 2012 REPORT
- QUB MPharm Interim March 2015 REPORT
- QUB MPharm reaccreditation April 2018 REPORT
- QUB Pharmacist independent prescribing course January 2013
- QUB Pharmacist independent prescribing reaccreditation REPORT 23 Nov 2015
- QUB independent prescribing accreditation report June 2019
- Northern Ireland Centre for Pharmacy Learning and Development (NICPLD) independent reaccreditation report June 2019
Guidance on student fitness to practise procedures in UK schools of pharmacy
The Council of the Pharmaceutical Society NI has adopted the GPhC’s guidance on managing fitness to practise concerns in education and training.
Post Registration Continuing Professional Development
To remain on the Register of Pharmaceutical Chemists (the Register) pharmacists must complete annual Continuing Professional Development (CPD). This process is overseen and assessed by the Pharmaceutical Society NI CPD team and details of the requirements can be found here.