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The Trainee Pharmacist Foundation year programme is the fifth-year of the initial education and training of pharmacists. This takes place after pharmacy students graduate with their MPharm degree, unless they have opted to participate in a 5-year MPharm with integrated training. It consolidates their initial learning and education, offers on-the-job, practical training in a clinical setting or settings, enabling trainee pharmacists to build upon their pharmacy knowledge, understanding, skills and behaviours, and previous experience, and apply them to enhance their knowledge and skills in preparation for registration.

Pharmacist foundation training is designed to give trainee pharmacists the support, direction, information and resources they need to bridge the transition from studying to registering as pharmacists. 

Most trainees will train in one sector for the full 52 weeks. But there is also the option to train in more than one sector. There are patient-facing sectors, such as community, hospital pharmacy and general practice, and non-patient-facing sectors such as the pharmaceutical industry and academia.

This video acts as a guide on how to look for and choose a foundation placement for trainee pharmacists.

The foundation trainee pharmacist multi-sector rotation programme provides the opportunity to train in general practice in conjunction with hospital or community pharmacy. Places are available across North Central London (NCL) which provide you with the opportunity to spend between three and six months in general practice, in conjunction with hospital or community pharmacy foundation training.  

For more information on places in your local area please email

What are the benefits of training via a multi-sector programme?  

Training through a multi-sector programme provides the opportunity to develop a broader and transferable skillset, work as part of multidisciplinary teams, and receive the support of a wide range of practitioners. You will also be supported by the HEE regional facilitator team, with access to all the HEE assessment strategy tools and e-portfolio to help you achieve the GPhC learning outcomes.

Other benefits include:

  • The training is designed to prepare you for the registration assessment but also to develop the core skills required of pharmacists both now and in the future

  • Training in more than one sector allows you to develop a broader range of knowledge and skills through the different experiences offered in each sector

  • Multi-sector training for pharmacists is recognised as a model to develop trainee pharmacists’ understanding of the different roles of pharmacists across health and care sectors, as well as the roles of professions involved in patient care within the system

  • Gives a better overview of cross sector and interface working

  • Gives opportunity to develop cross sector networks which provide interprofessional clinical and administrative support for optimum management of patients leading to better patient outcomes

  • General practice experience provides opportunity to develop and practice clinical and consultation skills and physical assessment techniques, as well as diagnostic skills including interpretation of investigative procedures

  • Experience the management of both acute and chronic conditions and see first-hand the role pharmacists have in delivering clinical services in general practice, this includes the utilisation of the non-medical prescribing qualification

  • Development of resilient, flexible and adaptable future pharmacist workforce

Please see the attached document developed by detailing the Impact of Post registration Multisector Training on Early Careers Pharmacists’ Professional Practice and Career Development.

Applications for 2023/2024 training placements open in Summer 2023. Recruitment will be via the National Recruitment Scheme, Oriel. You will find more information regarding recruitment on the Student Zone (

Currently, for those wishing to spend the full year in a community pharmacy, they will need to apply directly with the independent pharmacy or organisation. It is anticipated that from 2025/26, this will transition to Oriel, which will become the single-entry route into the trainee pharmacist foundation year.

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NCL's Pharmacy workforce can access the NCL Primary Care Pharmacy Network, which provides peer to peer support for those working in primary care organisations across NCL.

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