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Pharmacist Registration

Pharmacist registration

It is illegal to practise in Northern Ireland as a pharmacist without first being registered with the Pharmaceutical Society NI.

The registration year in Northern Ireland runs from 1 June to 31 May annually therefore to retain registration you will be required to complete the retention process (including paying registration fees) on 1 June every year after first registration.

 

Joining the Register
Re-registration process for former registrants

 

The registration year in Northern Ireland runs from 1 June to 31 May annually therefore to retain registration you will be required to complete the retention process (including paying registration fees) on 1 June every year after first registration.

From 1 June 2018 submission deadlines will be in place for this type of application. Please ensure you submit all components of your application (CPD requirements, CCPS & fee) before 5pm on the day of the deadline.

Submission deadlines for applications to re-join the register

It is important that all applicants to join the register of pharmaceutical chemists are competent to be registered. Competence may be evidenced in a number of ways but always includes evidence of qualification and training.

If you have been registered with another pharmacy regulatory body within the 12 months leading to your application to re-join the register you are required to submit a Certificate of Current Professional Status. A Certificate of Current Professional Status (CCPS) notes your ‘good standing’ with a regulator and outlines details about your registration, i.e. university attended, qualification and pre-registration training details and Fitness to Practise. This will generally be accepted as meeting the evidential standard.

If you have not been registered with another body within the last 12 months but hold recent evidence of CPD compliance you may submit this in the following form:

 

  1. A paper portfolio that details evidence of the previous year’s CPD, covering the 12 months prior to the date of your application; or
  2. Detailed evidence of the CPD which you have undertaken in the jurisdiction of the competent authority where you have previously been established, since leaving the PSNI register; or
  3. A report on any assessment which was undertaken and issued by the relevant pharmacy regulator. Verification may also be requested directly from the relevant regulator by the PSNI.

 

If you have not been recently registered with another body and do not hold evidence of CPD compliance you may find it useful to develop and submit a personal development plan and submit this alongside your application.

A template to help produce this is available here.

If you have not been registered with another pharmacy regulatory body within the last 12 months it is particularly important that you are aware of and comply with your obligations under our Code when registered as pharmaceutical chemist.

You should pay particular attention to principle 5.1.1: Practise only when you are competent and fit to do so.

Should you not submit any evidence, or should the evidence you provide be insufficient to confirm compliance we reserve the right to select your next CPD submission for assessment following registration.

 

Applicants who are no longer on the register and wish to practise in Northern Ireland must first restore their name to the register by completing an

Application to register (former registrants) amended  and Equality monitoring form.

Please complete the Equality monitoring form and return in a sealed envelope marked for the attention of the monitoring officer.

Please note we will require Certificates of current professional status from any regulator you are currently or have previously been registered with whilst you have been off the register in Northern Ireland. You must apply directly to the regulator for this certificate. They will then send the certificate on directly to us.

An applicant is not permitted to practise until they have confirmation that they are registered.

An applicant can further check their registration status by checking the online register 

If paying by debit card please complete a Debit payment form.

Please note the Pharmaceutical Society of NI does not accept credit cards. 

We recommend secure mail for all postal applications.

Registration process for applicants first registered in Great Britain

The registration year in Northern Ireland runs from 1 June to 31 May annually therefore to retain registration you will be required to complete the retention process (including paying registration fees) on 1 June every year after first registration.

From 1 June 2018 submission deadlines will be in place for this type of application. Please ensure you submit all components of your application (CPD requirements, CCPS & fee) before 5pm on the day of the deadline.

Submission deadlines for applications for applicants first registered in GB

Pharmacists who have been first registered in Great Britain  and wish to practise in Northern Ireland, must register with the Pharmaceutical Society NI.

Applicants must complete and submit an Application for registration as a Great Britain qualified pharmacist.

Application for registration as a Great Britain qualified pharmacist and Equality monitoring form.

If paying by debit card please complete a Debit payment form.

Please note the Pharmaceutical Society of NI does not accept credit cards. 

We recommend secure mail for all postal applications.

An applicant is not permitted to practise until they have confirmation that they are registered.

An applicant can further check their registration status by checking the online register 

Registration process for applicants first registered in the European Economic Area (EEA)

The registration year in Northern Ireland runs from 1 June to 31 May annually therefore to retain registration you will be required to complete the retention process (including paying registration fees) on 1 June every year after first registration.

From 1 June 2018 submission deadlines will be in place for this type of application. Please ensure you submit all components of your application (CPD requirements, CCPS & fee) before 5pm on the day of the deadline.

Submission deadlines for applications for applicants first registered in the EEA

Applicants may be required to attend an interview on application.

Pharmacists who have been first registered in the EEA who wish to practise in Northern Ireland (including pharmacists first registered in ROI) must register with the Pharmaceutical Society NI.

Applicants must complete and submit an Application for registration as an EEA qualified pharmacist

Application for registration as an EEA qualified pharmacist and Equality Monitoring Form.

If paying by debit card please complete a Debit payment form.

Please note the Pharmaceutical Society of NI does not accept credit cards. 

We recommend secure mail for all postal applications.

An applicant is not permitted to practise until they have confirmation that they are registered.

An applicant can further check their registration status by checking the online register 

Non-EEA applicants for registration

The registration year in Northern Ireland runs from 1 June to 31 May annually therefore to retain registration you will be required to complete the retention process (including paying registration fees) on 1 June every year after first registration.

Applicants may be required to attend an interview on application.

Pharmaceutical Society NI is governed by the European directive on the free movement of pharmacists in the European Economic Area.   Summary of EU Directive
Currently the Pharmaceutical Society NI does not recognise pharmacy qualifications obtained outside the EEA area.  This is an issue we are to review.

Currently to register in Northern Ireland it would first be necessary to contact the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC), in London, who offer qualifying courses to overseas pharmacists (OSPAP) at six university locations in GB. An applicant would then have to complete the pre registration requirements, which is one year in either GB or NI and then register in Great Britain or Northern Ireland depending on where the pre registration training was undertaken.

Any updates relating to the development of the Non-EU/EEA route of registration will be published in this section of the website.

Appealing a registration decision

Where a determination has been made by the registrar not to register an applicant, an appeal to this decision may be made to the Council of the Pharmaceutical Society NI*. At it’s meeting of 17 January 2017, the Council set out the procedure to be used in such an event.

The Procedure can be found at Registration Appeal’s Procedure 2017. It should be noted that any appeal should normally be made within 28 days of the Registrar’s decision.

To make an appeal against a decision not to register, the applicant must notify the Chief Executive of the Pharmaceutical Society NI, in writing, following the process outline above.

*excluding any notice of decision made via GPhC comparative assessment. Appeals of this nature are made directly to the GPhC.

Registering as a prescriber

If you have completed an accredited Independent Prescriber course and meet the criteria for registration as an Independent Prescriber we can now add the annotation IP against your name on the register if you follow the instructions below:

  • Complete and submit an application form: Annotation as an Independent Prescriber;
  • Submit a photocopy of your original certificate confirming completion of an accredited Independent Prescriber course;
  • Provide a fee of £25 payable by card payment form or cheque. Please only send card details by secure postal mail (do not send via email).

Please note the Pharmaceutical Society of NI does not accept credit cards. 

This application will normally be processed within 5 working days.

You will be able to practise as an Independent Prescriber when you have received written confirmation your name has been annotated on the register, which you should retain for your records.

Registration on completion of pre-registration training in Northern Ireland

The registration year in Northern Ireland runs from 1 June to 31 May annually therefore to retain registration you will be required to re-register on 1 June every year after first registration.

For more details on what is required follow the link to Registration in the pre-registration section

Replacement registration certificate

If a registrant has lost or had their certificate stolen they will need to provide written notification to the Pharmaceutical Society NI and pay a fee £5 for a replacement certificate.

A new certificate will be sent to a registrants registered address by recorded delivery.

Please note it may take up to 6 weeks to receive a new certificate.

Fees associated with registration

 

Fees as at 2018/19
Registration
Registration fee £398.00
Retention on the register (1st June annually)
Retention on the register £398.00
Restoration to the register
 
Penalty fee charged in addition to the retention fee, for default in payment of retention fee. £75.00
Fee charged in addition to the registration fee, for restoation of name to the register following removal by Statutory Committee £121.00
Pre-Registration
Registration fee £206.00
Retention fee £10.00
Examination fee £174.00
Resit examination fee £174.00
Misc Fees
Lost/Replacement certificate £5.00
Indemnity Requirements for Registration and Retention

 

Professional indemnity arrangements for pharmacists in Northern Ireland

 

Professional indemnity arrangements for pharmacists in Northern Ireland

It is a statutory requirement of registration for practising pharmacists in Northern Ireland to have an appropriate professional indemnity arrangement in respect of liabilities which may be incurred in practising under the Pharmacy (Northern Ireland) Order 1976, Article 11A.

An indemnity arrangement may comprise—

(a) a policy of insurance;

(b) an arrangement made for the purposes of indemnifying a person; or

(c) a combination of the two.

Pharmacists also have a personal responsibility to ensure that they have an appropriate professional indemnity arrangement in place for activities undertaken by them or under their control under Standard 2.1.7 of the Professional standards of conduct, ethics and performance for pharmacists in Northern Ireland (2016).

Standard 2.1.7 Ensure that all professional activities undertaken by you, or under your control, are covered by appropriate professional indemnity arrangements.

 

The requirement for an appropriate professional indemnity arrangement can be met via an employer’s arrangement for those who are employed or by having an individual professional arrangement or a combination of the two.

A pharmacist seeking to join, be restored to or be retained on the register must declare in writing, at the time of application or retention, that they have or will have a professional indemnity arrangement in place by the time they begin to practise.

The requirement for having professional indemnity arrangement is linked to registration and a pharmacist who is unable to complete the required declarations or, in some circumstances, provide supporting evidence may have their application for registration, restoration or retention refused.

Where the Registrar intends to refuse an application for registration, restoration or retention on the register, or where the Registrar intends to remove a name from the register, the pharmacist has a the right of appeal to the Statutory Committee in accordance with procedures set out in Article 10 of The Council of the Pharmaceutical Society of Northern Ireland (Indemnity Arrangements) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2014.

You can view ‘frequently asked questions’ about this requirement below.

Please note that the Pharmaceutical Society NI cannot offer advice on what type and level of professional indemnity arrangement is appropriate.

Professional guidance and advice on professional indemnity arrangements should be sought, where appropriate, from a professional body, trade union or defence organisation, or specialist insurers/advisors.

Professional indemnity arrangements and Fitness to Practise

 

Professional indemnity arrangements and Fitness to Practise

 It is the responsibility of pharmacists to ensure that they have or will have a professional indemnity arrangement and that it is appropriate to their area of practice.

Whilst in the majority of circumstances failure to hold an appropriate professional indemnity arrangement means that an individual who is unable to complete the required declarations or, in some circumstances, provide supporting evidence may have their application for registration, restoration or retention refused, in some circumstances failure may be treated as misconduct. In these cases, the Registrar must consider, in accordance with Pharmacy (Northern Ireland) Order (1976) Schedule 3, paragraph 5(1) whether to refer the matter to the Scrutiny Committee or (where regulations under paragraph 5(1) of that Schedule so provide) to the Statutory Committee.

 The Registrar will consider initiating a Fitness to Practise investigation, if he / she believes a pharmacist:

  • has made a false declaration that they have a professional indemnity arrangement in place while practising;
  • registered or renewed their registration with the Pharmaceutical Society NI but has cancelled their professional indemnity arrangement and has failed to put an alternative professional indemnity arrangement in place; or
  • has a professional indemnity arrangement which is not appropriate for their practice, as set out in Pharmacy (Northern Ireland) Order (1976), Article 11A.

 

Frequently asked questions: Professional indemnity arrangements and your registration/retention

 

I am employed as a pharmacist. What will the requirement mean for me?

 It is anticipated that most pharmacists meet this requirement as many work in a managed environment where they are indemnified by their employers.

As the indemnity declaration, which is required as part of the application for registration, restoration or retention, is made by the pharmacist, they are required to check that their employer’s indemnity arrangements cover the full scope of their practice.

I am a self-employed pharmacist. What will the requirement mean for me?

 Self-employed pharmacists must ensure that they will have an appropriate professional indemnity arrangement in place.

I undertake a combination of self-employed and employed work as a pharmacist.

 Pharmacists undertaking a combination of employed and self-employed work, or if they work for more than one employer, must ensure that they will have an appropriate professional indemnity arrangement in place for each area where they practice.

I am currently not practising will I need a professional indemnity arrangement?

Pharmacists who are not practising are not required to have professional indemnity arrangement in place unless they practise.

Pharmacists returning to practise will be required to obtain and provide evidence, if requested, of an appropriate professional indemnity arrangement prior to returning to practise.

I am a registered pharmacist in Northern Ireland, but I work as a lecturer, not in direct healthcare. How does this affect me?

The statutory requirement is for all registered pharmacists who are practising in Northern Ireland to have a professional indemnity arrangement in place.

In such circumstances, a pharmacist must ensure that their employer’s indemnity arrangement is appropriate and relevant to the pharmacist’s scope of practice.

What about Good Samaritan acts?

  A Good Samaritan act is where clinical assistance is given in a medical emergency, which a pharmacist may happen upon in a personal rather than professional situation. The legislation requires a pharmacist to have professional indemnity arrangement for actions or deeds undertaken as part of their employment or self-employment. Good Samaritan acts sit outside this requirement.

However, pharmacists should seek advice from their professional association, union or insurer, in relation to any insurance cover required for Good Samaritan acts.

What is vicarious liability?

The principle of vicarious liability is that an employer can be liable for the wrongs (e.g. negligence) committed by an employee in the course of their employment. It does not mean that the employee is no longer liable for their own negligence including meeting any indemnity requirements.

How will Pharmaceutical Society NI check that a professional indemnity arrangement is in place?

Pharmacists applying to join, be restored to or be retained on the register will be required to complete the indemnity arrangement declaration, confirming that:

  • they have professional indemnity arrangement in place that is appropriate to their scope of practice and can provide evidence of this indemnity cover, if requested; or
  • if they are not practising at the time of the application, that they will have an indemnity arrangement in place before starting to practise.

The Pharmaceutical Society NI will not routinely seek evidence of professional indemnity arrangements but may request a copy of the professional indemnity arrangement or such other information deemed necessary to determine that an appropriate indemnity arrangement is in place within a specified timeframe.

The statutory requirement for pharmacists to have an appropriate professional indemnity arrangement is a condition of registration with the Pharmaceutical Society NI. Failure to satisfactorily complete the indemnity insurance declaration may result in an application to join, be restored to or be retained on the register being refused.

A pharmacist who is practising must promptly inform the Registrar when an appropriate indemnity arrangement ceases, in accordance with Article 6 of The Council of the Pharmaceutical Society of Northern Ireland (Indemnity Arrangements) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2014. In such cases, the Registrar will seek assurances that the pharmacist will not practise until an appropriate indemnity arrangement is restored.

A pharmacist must be able to provide information regarding their indemnity arrangement on request to any person wishing to access their services.

What is an appropriate professional indemnity arrangement?

It is for individual pharmacist to assure themselves of the appropriateness of their professional indemnity cover.

Appropriate cover means that the professional indemnity arrangement in place is appropriate to the pharmacist’s role, scope of practice and the risks involved with their practice. The professional indemnity arrangement must be sufficient to meet the costs of litigation and any successful claim for compensation.

Levels and types of professional indemnity arrangement will vary from professional to professional and advice should be sought from specialist insurers/advisors on the appropriateness of professional indemnity arrangements having regard to the pharmacist’s circumstances.

Pharmacists should ensure that they understand the terms of their Professional Indemnity arrangement and should declare all relevant information to their indemnity provider which may influence a provider’s decision whether to offer cover.

An independent review on the introduction of regulator led indemnity arrangements recommended to the UK government that:

‘Provided that there has been full disclosure of relevant facts, in the event that personal cover for self-employed practice is alleged to be inappropriate, pharmacists should be entitled to rely on the defence that they have acted in accordance with the proposals of their insurer or indemnifier.’[1]

It is anticipated that this situation will apply to complaints received by the Pharmaceutical Society NI.

How will the Pharmaceutical Society NI judge appropriateness?

Pharmacists should assure themselves of the appropriateness of their professional indemnity arrangement.

The Pharmaceutical Society NI will investigate any complaint made whereby evidence is produced of an inappropriate professional indemnity arrangement.

During the course of an investigation, we will rely upon the advice of appropriately qualified insurance and indemnity experts.

What is the difference between insurance and professional indemnity?

 Public liability insurance can cover compensation claims if you’re sued by a member of the public for injury or damage, while professional indemnity insurance can cover compensation claims if you’re sued by a client for a mistake that you make in your work.

Should I get insurance or an indemnity arrangement?

 To meet the requirements of the legislation, either insurance or a professional indemnity arrangement is acceptable.  However, whichever form is chosen must be appropriate for the nature and risks of your practice.

 Where can I find guidance or support to help me choose an appropriate provider?

 Practicing pharmacists must assure themselves that they have professional indemnity arrangement in place that is appropriate to their scope of practice. The Pharmaceutical Society NI cannot advise about the level and type of arrangement you will need.

Pharmacists should seek advice from their professional body, trade union/defence organisation, specialist insurer (if appropriate) or their employer.

 

[1]  F Scott (2010) Independent review of the requirement to have insurance or indemnity as a condition of registration as a healthcare professional.  Available at assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/216297/dh_117457.pdf .

 

Declarations to the Registrar

Pharmacists are required to make self declarations to the Pharmaceutical Society NI with regard to their fitness to practise. Standard 3.1.6 of the Code of Ethics and Standards (March 2016) imposes upon registrants a professional obligation to:

“Promptly inform the regulator, your employer and other relevant authorities of any circumstances that may call into question your fitness to practise or has the potential to bring the profession of pharmacy into disrepute.”

“Impairment of fitness to practise” is defined at para 4 of Schedule 3 to the Pharmacy (Northern Ireland) Order 1976 (as amended) and includes misconduct, certain criminal or disciplinary matters, deficient professional performance and any “adverse physical or mental health which impairs their ability to practise safely and effectively or which otherwise impairs their ability to carry out the duties of a registered person in a safe and effective manner.”

Registrants are also under a statutory duty to notify the registrar in writing of certain criminal or disciplinary proceedings or investigations within 7 days (see regulation 3 of the Council of the Pharmaceutical Society of Northern Ireland (Fitness to Practise and Disqualification) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2012).

If you wish to make a declaration please use the Self-declaration form.

The declaration should be addressed private and confidential and forwarded to the
Pharmaceutical Society of NI for the attention of the Registrar.

Certification of photographs for applications

When applying to register (excluding former registrants) you must submit a recent passport style photograph (taken within the last 6 months) which has been certified on the back and attached to the application form on the photograph form page.

Your photograph must be certified, signed and dated by a professional person, or a person of standing in the community. Examples include a pharmacist, a university lecturer, a registered solicitor or a licensed Medical Practitioner.

  • The person providing the countersignature must not be related to you by birth or marriage;
  • Neither should they be in a personal relationship with you nor live at your address;
  • The signatory must have known you for at least two years

The certification on the back of the photograph should read: “I certify that this is a true likeness of [applicant’s full name]”

The photograph must be signed and dated by the signatory under the certification

The person certifying the photograph must also complete photograph form section of the application.

Changes to the register

 

Changing your address

Should a registrant wish to change their registered address, they must inform the Pharmaceutical Society NI in writing or via  fax or email, quoting their registration number.

Write to us at:

Registration
Pharmaceutical Society NI
73 University Street
Belfast
BT7 1HL

or email:  registration@psni.org.uk

We will confirm the change of address in writing or by email.

Change of name

 

To change your name on the register please complete the form Change of Name and submit with supporting documents.

This should be sent via recorded or secure postal mail to:

Registration

Pharmaceutical Society NI

73 University Street

Belfast

BT7 1HL

Change of email

Registrants can update the email stored for their registration including membership online services by emailing registration@psni.org.uk, stating:

Full name, registration number and new email.

We will confirm the change of email address by email.

A new password is not needed for membership online services.

Leaving the Register

 

Withdrawing voluntarily from the register

The registration year in Northern Ireland runs from 1 June to 31 May annually therefore to retain registration you will be required to complete the retention process (including paying registration fees) on 1 June every year after first registration.

Registrants, who wish to be voluntarily removed from the register of Pharmaceutical Chemists in Northern Ireland, may apply to leave in accordance with Regulation 7(6) of the Council of the Pharmaceutical Society of Northern Ireland (Fitness to Practise and Disqualification) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2012. Normally, registrants who are subject to fitness to practise procedures will not be permitted to remove their name from the register by voluntary request.

Each application is processed by the Registrar in accordance with these Regulations.

In order to be removed from the register you must print, complete and submit the Application for withdrawal .  Any registrant leaving by voluntary request must be able to produce evidence they have met their obligations for Continuing Professional Development whilst on the register as set out in the CPD framework.

Please note the Pharmaceutical Society NI will inform the registrant if their application to withdraw from the register has been successful. If a registrant does not receive this confirmation within 7 days of submission they must contact the organisation in writing seeking confirmation of receipt. It is the registrant’s responsibility to ensure that this form has been received.

Below is a list for each calendar year detailing the applications granted for voluntary withdrawal from the register.

Please check the register, phone registration at 02890326927 or email registration@psni.org.uk to check the current status of any pharmacist.

Voluntary removal lists:

Voluntary removals 2019

Voluntary removals 2018

Voluntary-removals-2017

Voluntary-removals-2016

Voluntary removals 2015

Voluntary removals 2014

Voluntary removals 2013

Reporting the death of a registrant

To inform the Pharmaceutical Society NI of the death of a registrant, e-mail, fax or write to us, at:

Registration
Pharmaceutical Society NI
73 University Street
Belfast BT7 1HL
Email: registration@psni.org.uk

Please also submit a certified copy of the death certificate.

Removal of registrants for non-payment of fees

Removal of registrants for non-payment of fees

The registration year in Northern Ireland runs from 1 June to 31 May annually therefore to retain registration you will be required to complete the retention process (including paying registration fees) on 1 June every year after first registration.

All registrants are contacted individually by letter to offer annual retention at their current registered address. It is every registrant’s responsibility to update the Registrar on any change to their address.

The fee is due on or before the 01 June 2017. Statutory notification will be given (normally 01 July), as defined in the Pharmacy (Northern Ireland) Order 1976 to those pharmacists who have not paid their retention fee by that date. Following this notice, the names of those registrants who have not paid their fees are submitted to the Council. The Registrar will request the Council to instruct the removal from the register of those registrants who remain unpaid two months after the statutory notice has been given normally on 01 September. There is an additional fee payable for registrants removed from the register for non-payment of fees before restoration to the register.

Certificate of Current Professional Status

From 1 June 2018 submission deadlines will be in place for this type of application. Please ensure you submit your application before 5pm on the day of the deadline.

Submission deadlines for CCPS applications

Pharmacists currently registered in Northern Ireland who wish to apply for registration to practise in another country require a ’European Certificate of Current Professional Status’ to be sent on their behalf to the relevant registration authority. This certificate will confirm a registrant’s/former registrant’s good standing with the Pharmaceutical Society NI, and also outline details about their registration, i.e. university attended, qualification and preregistration training details.

The certificate is valid for 3 months from the date of issue. Most regulatory authorities request this document as part of their registration process.

This certificate is sent directly to the regulatory authority marked on the application. You will not receive a copy.

We will send confirmation that we have issued the certificate to the regulatory authority on the registrant’s behalf.

Click here for the Application for a CCPS 

Note for pre-registration students: 

A CCPS can only be provided from the day you have been registered. For example if you register on 5 August, the next deadline you will be able to meet will be the 15 August and your certificate will be sent on 3 September. 

In order to register with another regulatory body at the end of the pre-registration year you must initially register with the Pharmaceutical Society NI.  If you do not, you will not meet the requirements for EEA recognition of professional qualifications.

This is detailed in the Directive 2005/36/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 7 September 2005 on the recognition of professional qualifications.

An extract to confirm the position of the GPhC and PSI can be found here.

 

The Pharmaceutical Society NI welcomes feedback on all areas of the registration process, please write to :

Registration
Pharmaceutical Society NI
73 University Street
Belfast
BT7 1HL

Email: registration@psni.org.uk