National workforce survey launched – make sure you respond

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National workforce survey launched – make sure you respond

August 3, 2017

*Please note, the survey deadline has been extended to Friday 13th October 2017*

Community pharmacy contractors* across England will recently have received emails from NHS England asking them to participate in the first ever national community pharmacy workforce survey. If a pharmacy contractor has not received an email regarding the survey from NHS England, they should email england.cpws@nhs.net.

The online questionnaire about the pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, medicines counter and dispensary workforce in each pharmacy is being conducted for Health Education England (HEE). The survey is designed to inform the commissioning of future education and development programmes for community pharmacists, pharmacy technicians and the wider team.

To complete the survey, contractors should use the unique, secure log-in, they will have received by email, to access the survey. Contractors have until 30th September 2017 to complete the survey.

Commenting on the launch of the survey, Alastair Buxton, Director of NHS Services at PSNC said:

“We encourage all contractors to complete the survey. This is the first ever national workforce survey and the data collected through it will inform future commissioning of clinical education and development of the whole pharmacy team.

Additional education and development for the whole pharmacy team will support the sector’s ambition to radically enhance and expand the personalised care, support and wellbeing services that community pharmacies provide, as described in the Community Pharmacy Forward View.

It is therefore important that contractors complete the survey so that HEE has the information it needs to properly plan future training and development initiatives.”

* Asda, Boots, Lloyds, Morrisons, Rowlands, Superdrug, Tesco, and Well have already completed the survey centrally, so pharmacies within those companies will not receive a request to complete the survey. Pharmacies in London and the Thames Valley area (Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire) have previously completed a similar survey, so they will not receive a request to complete the survey.

Further information on the survey

HEE is the national leadership organisation for education, training and workforce development in the health sector. It works to ensure the workforce has the right skills, behaviours and training, and is available in the right numbers, to support the delivery of excellent healthcare and drive improvements. For example, HEE funds the work of the Centre for Pharmacy Postgraduate Education (CPPE).

This is one of several schemes linked to further clinical education and development for pharmacists and pharmacy technicians which have been commissioned by HEE working in collaboration with NHS England. The wider schemes, which will be informed by the community pharmacy workforce survey, will be funded by an initial £15 million investment from the Pharmacy Integration Fund up to March 2019.

The survey is being undertaken by an independent research company called Marketing Means (UK) Ltd, and NHS England will send the survey invitation (on behalf of HEE) by email directly to  contractors. This will contain a clickable link which will take contractors straight to the questionnaire, which is hosted on a secure website.

For most pharmacies, the questionnaire should take approximately 15 minutes to complete. HEE have developed a crib sheet which can be used to collate information on pharmacy staff before you complete the online questionnaire:

Workforce survey crib sheet

Potential ways in which the data might be used by HEE are:

  • to inform the commissioning of education and training for the wider primary health care team including community pharmacy;
  • to support education investment decisions by HEE;
  • to establish differences and shortages of skill mix in different areas and share good practice; and
  • to support understanding of the capacity and capability of the workforce in the community pharmacy sector as part of transformation plans being delivered by Sustainability and Transformation Partnerships (STPs).

The responses to the questionnaire will be treated confidentially, and aggregated data will be reported to HEE. All survey processes are consistent with the requirements of the Data Protection Act.

In the case of pharmacies which are part of a group, HEE will report survey participation and non-participation to the group’s head office, if requested to do so.

If you have any queries, please contact:



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