Medicines counter assistant course

The NPA’s market leading Medicines Counter Assistant (Interact) course meets the minimum training requirements outlined by the GPhC for staff working on the medicines counter. This fully accredited course provides essential knowledge required to sell medicines over the counter and provide appropriate healthcare advice. Interact provides flexible learning at a pace that suits the pharmacy and the learner. Every learner has their own copy of the complete course materials, empowering them to study, learn and have their own personal reference source of information when supporting customers and patients.

  • Supports the learner to improve product knowledge and develop confidence on the medicine counter.
  • Course materials can be used as a personal reference source when supporting patients.
  • All course materials are sent together, providing flexible learning at a pace that suits the pharmacy and the learner.

Medicines counter and dispensing course

This  new course meets the minimum training requirements outlined by the GPhC for staff working on the medicines counter and undertaking dispensing activities.  It has been designed to help students ease into their role and gain confidence in the dispensary and over the counter.

This course is accredited by the GPhC, and it provides learners with the skills and knowledge relating to legal aspects and procedures within the dispensary, as well as common over-the-counter knowledge.

Health Care Assistant Course

Efficient pharmacies require support staff who are qualified to work behind the counter, as well as in the dispensary. This course develops confidence behind the counter and in the dispensary, providing the appropriate skills and knowledge to prepare for the challenges of both roles.

Topics include:

1. Working in a pharmacy. Here you will learn about the pharmacy team, the NHS and the importance of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs).

2. Communicating with customers. Here you will learn about customer care and how to communicate effectively.

3. Law, regulations and health and safety. Here you will learn about the laws relating to medicines, poisons and health and safety.

4. Receiving a Prescription. Here you will learn how to receive a prescription, procedures and records related to them and the actions to take if the prescription is not valid.

5. Giving out a prescription and counselling. Here you will learn about your role when issuing prescribed medicines and how and who to refer to when necessary.

6. Pain. Here you will learn about pain and the treatments available to treat it as well as common minor ailments causing pain.

7. Coughs and colds. Here you will learn about coughs and colds, their symptoms, treatments, questions to ask, advice, as well as reasons to refer.

8. Gastrointestinal problems. Here you will learn about gastrointestinal problems, their symptoms, treatments, questions to ask, advice, as well as reasons to refer.

9. Summer and travel health. Here you'll learn about the medicines required by travellers, to treat and prevent disease.

10. Skin, hair and feet. Here you will learn about problems associated with skin, hair and feet, their symptoms, treatments, questions to ask, advice, as well as reasons to refer.

11. Ears, Eyes and Mouth.Here you will learn about problems of ears, the eyes and mouth, their symptoms, treatments, questions to ask, advice, as well as reasons to refer.

12. Women's Health. Here you will learn about the common minor ailments suffered by women, how to treat them effectively and when to refer.

13. Baby care. Here you will learn about the common minor ailments suffered by children, how to treat them effectively and when to refer.

14. Healthy Lifestyles. Here you will learn about promoting wellbeing and healthy lifestyles to the public as well as some of the healthy messages you can deliver.

15. Assembling a Prescription. Here you will learn how to assemble of a prescription, storage and labelling

16. Calculations. Here you will learn about the common calculations required in the pharmacy.

17. Ordering, receiving, storing and issuing stock. Here you will learn about effective pharmaceutical stock management.

Medicines Counter Assistant Course

Anyone working in a pharmacy who supplies medicine as part of their role must undertake a GPhC accredited medicines counter assistant course. Unregistered pharmacy staff must be enrolled on a training programme within three months of commencing their role and the programme must be completed within a three-year time period.

Medicines Counter Assistants are the first people customers interact with in a community pharmacy. It is their job not only to advise patients correctly about their health needs but also to act as brand ambassadors for the business. They need the knowledge and confidence to talk to customers and promote the pharmacy as a hub for healthy living advice and care.

This course is designed to help pharmacists support colleagues to be able to confidently advise customers on common ailments and know when to refer to a pharmacist. Colleagues who successfully complete this course will achieve the recognised qualification of Medicine Counter Assistant.

Medicines Counter Assistants course

The Support Staff Course for Medicines Counter Assistants (MCA) covers communication skills, the classification of medicines, the use of 2WHAM questions, handling prescriptions, abuse and misuse of medicines, referral to the pharmacist and product knowledge covering a wide range of symptoms and complaints encountered in pharmacies.

  • Develops confidence at the medicines counter
  • Provides in-depth product knowledge and advanced communication skills

Healthcare assistant course

The Support Staff Course for Pharmacy Healthcare Assistants takes learners through the practical and legal aspects of working in a dispensary and on the medicines counter. It covers knowledge and skills from both the Support Staff Courses for Dispensing Assistants and Medicines Counter Assistants.

  • Develops confidence behind the medicines counter and in the dispensary.
  • Provides the appropriate skills and knowledge to prepare for the challenges of both the Dispensing Assistant and Medicines Counter Assistant roles.