Developing revalidation for pharmacy professionals

We began work to develop revalidation shortly after coming in to operation in 2010, in a programme which included research, testing and piloting phases. This page summarises the process we followed to develop the revalidation requirements which were implemented on 30 March 2018

The advisory group

We set up an advisory group in 2014, to advise and provide feedback on the revalidation development work and the proposals. Chaired by Lord Kirkwood of Kirkhope, the group is made up of representatives from more than thirty organisations, including representatives of pharmacy professionals and a patient representative.

The group helped to steer all aspects of the work through regular workshops. The advisory group’s  insights have significantly influenced the proposals over the course of the development programme.

Find out more about the advisory group


Before and during 2015 we carried out various forms of research, including desk research and commissioning studies, to understand more about:

  • the outcomes we are trying to achieve
  • how other healthcare regulators were working
  • the theory and practice behind activities like peer discussion, and
  • how our present approach to CPD was viewed by pharmacy professionals and our reviewers

We also reviewed  work done by the previous regulator, the RPSGB, and consulted with other regulatory bodies including the General Medical Council to see what we could learn from them.


After our research in 2015 we used the evidence we collected to test the proposals with more than 200 pharmacy professionals from a range of roles and contexts of pharmacy practice.

We evaluated the results and found that the proposals were largely effective, but that we had more work to do to make our expectations clearer and provide support to pharmacy professionals. We applied what we learnt when developing our pilot.


In 2016 we began a pilot with over 1300 volunteers from a range of roles and contexts of pharmacy practice. Over eight months the volunteers used draft guidance and examples that we produced to complete:

  • their entries for revised CPD recording
  • a peer discussion, and
  • an early version of the reflective account

During the pilot we held an online workshop for volunteers to find out which parts of the pilot were working for them, which could be changed and their proposals for improvements. We used their feedback to improve the proposals that we make in this consultation.


During and after the pilot in 2016, Solutions for Public Health (SPH) carried out an independent evaluation of the pilot.

SPH began their work by reviewing the outcomes we were aiming to achieve, and designed an evaluation approach based on these. Using a range of methods, SPH collected data about how pharmacy professionals took part in the pilot arrangements and what they thought about them.

In their independent report, SPH found that the proposals largely had the impacts we expected and in some cases some especially positive outcomes. There were areas for improvement in the design of the proposals and we have taken these on board in our proposals.

Equality and diversity

In all stages of our development work we have considered whether there are any significant equality implications, either positive or negative, for registrants or members of the public.

We have worked with a wide range of audiences and have made sure that our testing involved a sample of pharmacists and pharmacy technicians that broadly reflected the profession as a whole. We have not identified any significant negative equality or diversity implications in our proposals and expect there to be a positive benefit for patients and the public.