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Medicines counter assistant

Since 1996, anyone working in a pharmacy who supplies medicine as part of their role must undertake an accredited medicines counter assistant course.

A medicines counter assistant is involved in the sale of over-the-counter medicine and works under the supervision of a pharmacist. A medicines counter assistant is trained to offer advice on common ailments and must know when to refer a customer to a pharmacist.

Medicines counter assistants must complete an accredited medicines counter assistant course, or the relevant units of a GPhC-recognised dispensing assistant or pharmacy technician course.

The length of the course varies between programme providers, however, as a guide, the course is normally between three and six months in length. The GPhC requires that a medicines counter assistant has completed training in a maximum of three years.

For more detailed information on the GPhC's training requirement for those who work on the Medicines Counter please see the relevant policy below:

Training requirement policy for Dispensing Assistants and Medicines Counter Assistants