Council Decisions (July 2018)
The following is a summary of some of the issues discussed and decisions taken by the South African Pharmacy Council (‘Council’) during its meeting held on 11 and 12 July 2018. Other important issues are dealt with as separate articles in this or future editions of e-Pharmaciae.
Applicants with a qualification obtained outside South Africa
The Office of the Registrar received applications from foreign-qualified candidates who wish to be registered as pharmacists or pharmacy support personnel. Council had previously approved Guidelines for persons who hold qualifications in pharmacy obtained outside the Republic, as well as criteria to be used in the evaluation of these applications. In July 2016, Council resolved that pharmacists with foreign qualifications be granted four attempts in each paper and a maximum of four years from the date of approval to pass the professional examinations. After evaluation of the application form and all the supporting documents, applicants requiring registration as pharmacists who meet the criteria must write the professional examination; once successful in the examination, the applicant may apply to register as a pharmacist intern subject to conditions determined by Council. Foreign qualified candidates who meet the criteria to write the professional examination but request registration in a lower category are allowed to register as pharmacist’s assistant learner post-basic. Applicants requiring registration as pharmacy support personnel must complete a module on pharmacy law and ethics with an accredited provider.
In July 2018 Council resolved that-
- Messrs AO Akinboye, KP Kayembe and Ms N Gangata be registered as pharmacist interns after successfully completing the professional examinations and be required to complete a minimum of six months internship in an institutional or community pharmacy. The candidates also be required to complete the pre-registration evaluation, i.e. successfully complete the pre-registration examination, submit six continuing professional development (CPD) entries from compulsory competence standards 1 to 7 and be competent in at least fourof them, and have favourable progress reports submitted by the tutor at 12 and 24 weeks, and the summary of outcomes at 24 weeks, prior to registration as pharmacist;
- Messrs N Joy, KR Taolana, L Thirumalasetti, MM Saleh, IA Bapuji and Mesdames P Lata and II Patel be registered as pharmacist interns after successfully completing the professional examinations and be required to complete a minimum of 12 months internship in an institutional or community pharmacy. The candidates be required to also complete the pre-registration evaluation, i.e. successfully complete the pre-registration examination, CPD requirements, and submit all progress reports, prior to registration as pharmacists.
Criteria for the evaluation of foreign qualifications – content required for the syllabus and the curriculum
Council has approved the Guidelines for persons who hold qualifications in pharmacy obtained outside the republic, as well as criteria to be used in the evaluation of these applications. The Office of the Registrar receives applications for persons applying to be registered as pharmacists in South Africa. Applicants are required to submit information regarding the syllabus and curriculum of the qualification with the application, however, applicants usually send syllabi and curricular with varying content which has made it difficult for the Council to evaluate some of them. On investigation, it was found that the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA) requires that applicants who require recognition of foreign qualifications, submit an academic transcript containing the name of subjects covered in each year of study, the content of each subject, the learning outcomes for the subjects and the assessment criteria/method. Council, however, preferred using “modules” since the South African Bachelor of Pharmacy (BPharm) programme delivers a module-based curriculum. In July, Council approved the Criteria for evaluation of foreign applications which have been updated to include definitions for “module” and “subject” and updated the Guidelines for persons who hold qualifications in pharmacy obtained outside the Republic to be in line with the approved criteria.
Evaluation of foreign qualification for Mr Abel Onwachei
The Office of the Registrar received an application from Mr CA Onwachei who wishes to be registered as a pharmacist in South Africa. Whilst the Office of the Registrar was processing the application for evaluation, Mr Onwachei was found performing the scope of practice of a pharmacist in the dispensary of a pharmacy by a compliance officer. Candidates who apply for recognition of their foreign qualification with Council are not registered with Council until they pass professional examinations and are registered as such. It was also noted that in terms of Chapter 5 of the Pharmacy Act, 53 of 1974, Council has no jurisdiction over persons who are not registered with Council, if a person is found to be performing the scope of practice of a pharmacist whilst not registered as such, such person may be charged with a criminal offence according to Chapter 29 of the Pharmacy Act. Council resolved that Mr Onwachei’s application for registration as a pharmacist be declined as he has contravened Section 29 of the Pharmacy Act by performing the acts of a pharmacist while not registered as such.
Request for an exemption to perform internship for Mr E Matanyaire
The Office of the Registrar received a request from Mr E Matanyaire, who obtained a BPharm qualification from Rhodes University, to be exempted from performing an internship in South Africa. Mr Matanyaire completed internship in Botswana. He is currently working in Namibia, and registered with the Pharmacy Council of Namibia. According to Regulation 14(1)(c)(ii) of the Regulations relating to registration of persons and maintenance of registers, a person may be registered as a pharmacist if they have “completed his or her internship: provided that the council may exempt him or her partially or in full from this requirement on submission of documentary evidence to the satisfaction of council that he or she has undertaken practical training as part of his or her undergraduate studies under the supervision of a provider of a qualification in pharmacy”. The proof of internship submitted by Mr Matanyaire is not from the statutory body in Botswana, but places of employment. Council in July resolved not to approve the request from Mr Matanyaire to be exempted from performing an internship in South Africa. Mr Matanyaire is therefore required to submit documentary evidence of completion of internship from the statutory body in Botswana in order to be considered for the shortened internship period of 6 months.
Any person who has obtained a BPharm qualification in an institution accredited by Council to provide the BPharm programme, and performed their internship in another country, is required to-
- to produce evidence of completion of internship and a letter of good standing from the statutory body in the country where the internship was completed;
- complete a minimum of six months’ internship; and
- complete pre-registration evaluation, i.e. successfully complete the pre-registration examination, submit six CPD entries from compulsory competence standards 1 to 7 and be competent in fourof them; and have favourable progress reports submitted by the tutor at 12 and 24 weeks, and the summary of outcomes at 24 weeks prior to registration as a pharmacist.
Accreditation/monitoring visit instrument for higher education and training (HET) providers
The instrument was piloted in four institutions that had accreditation /monitoring visits in 2017. The instrument was aligned with the Good Pharmacy Education (GPE) standards. In July, Council approved both the accreditation/monitoring visit instrument and the GPE standards for HET providers, as well as the reporting template for the accreditation/monitoring visits.
Accreditation/monitoring visit to Nelson Mandela University for the higher certificate in pharmacy support and the advanced certificate in pharmacy technical support
During the last visit at NMU, the panel members noted that Ms DN Naude nee Gerghe, a pharmacist’s assistant in the category post-basic with a foreign qualification in pharmacy is involved in the training of pharmacy technician students. Ms Naude in 2015 requested Council to be exempted from the requirement to write the professional exam and that she be allowed to register as a pharmacist’s assistant (post-basic). In July, Council resolved that the Good Pharmacy Education standards for higher education and training providers be amended to include that a person who teaches pharmacy practice must be a pharmacist.
Accreditation of short courses: continuous professional development courses by Insight Medicines Information (Pty) Ltd
The Office of the Registrar received an application for accreditation/approval of short courses from Insight Medicines Information (Pty) Ltd for continuous professional development courses. Council in July resolved that the continuous professional development courses be approved on condition that the provider submits the number of notional hours and credits for the learning programme to the Office of the Registrar.