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Senior Medicines Advice Pharmacist, NHS SPS Medicines Advice Service

Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
Depending on experience Dependent on experience
Closing date
1 Jun 2023

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Other Health Profession
Band 8A
Full Time
Job summary

We have an exciting opportunity for an enthusiastic pharmacist (Band 8a) to join the NHS Specialist Pharmacy Service (SPS) Medicines Advice (MA) team. This post is hosted by the Liverpool University Hospitals Foundation Trust and based at the Pharmacy Practice Unit (PPU) with opportunity to work remotely. Secondments will be considered.Join us as a senior pharmacist to support and deliver the national SPS MA clinical enquiry answering service and develop SPS website content.You will have a broad and varied role working in collaboration with colleagues across the MAservice and other functions of SPS.

Main duties of the job

- Use your expertise and knowledge of medicines to answer enquires received through the SPS clinical enquiry answering service from NHS primary care health professionals- Advise on all aspects of medicines optimisation and provide a pragmatic perspective- Use advanced clinical interpretation skills to provide accessible and evidence based information about medicines to help other healthcare professionals understand the implications for their patients- Experience using and developing digital solutions produced by SPS such as the medicines compliance aid tool and the medicines monitoring tool- Use your clinical pharmacy skills to inform development of national resources to support best practice- Acquire and develop skills and experience writing content for the SPS website- Build experience of agile working and project management as part of a national team, taking the lead on your individual projects.- Participate in delivering novel ways of working including interactive web-based solutions to enquiries- Benefit from the support of experienced SPS pharmacists in your development and training.

About us

The SPS MA team are specialists in medicines advice, we pride ourselves on being accurate, consistent, relevant and able to deliver our advice effectively and with integrity. We're passionate in all aspects of our work, we want to change things for the better. Are you someone who shares ourvalues? The Liverpool site, in addition to contributing to the national clinical enquiry answering service, is the lead centre for the SPS Dental MA Service and the SPS Horizon Scanning service. Other work includes coordinating and participating in quality assurance for the NHS IV Guide and supporting a North West pilot of the pharmacogenomics PROGRESS study. The PPU also hosts SPS Quality Assurance, Procurement, and Medicines Use and Safety teams as well as Yellow Card Centre North West.To learn more about what we do and what we can offer you and to answer any questions you might have, please get in touch and arrange an informal visit or phone call.For further details / informal visits contact:Christine Randall 0151 794 8117ORHelen Davis 07771772137We are a hosted service and may recruit a remote worker

Job description

Job responsibilities

KEY RESPONSIBILITIESLeadership responsibilitiesThe post-holder will support delivery of a transformation plan for the NHS SPS MA service which includes Information & resources, and either the clinical enquiry or Regional Medicines Optimisation Committee Support Services for England. The post holder will work in collaboration with peers and under the direction of the relevant Associate Hub, and Hub Leads for these functions.

The post-holder will:
  • Support the implementation of strategies and plans for the NHS SPS MA Service for England.
  • Provide medicines advice in line with governance arrangements for the SPS MA Service for England that enable and assure delivery against the NHS SPS service specification as commissioned by NHSEI.
  • Support the transformation of SPS MA Service for England.
  • Maintain a specialist theoretical and practical knowledge of medicines optimisation as it applies across integrated care systems.
  • Where appropriate and under the direction of the Hub Leads or Head of SPS, act as an expert resource nationally for the NHS SPS MA more generally for a range of internal
  • Work as part of a high performing team to deliver the agreed strategy for the NHS SPS MA Service for England.
  • Implement and monitor standards for the provision of the MA service in line with national guidelines/specifications to ensure an effective, timely and safe level of service that meet users needs.
  • Undertake coaching, mentoring, and performance management of direct reports.
  • Utilise your expertise to train others to deliver an expert, high quality, effective and stakeholder focused service to all areas of responsibility.
  • Support the NHS SPS MA team to maintain motivation to consistently meet challenging service and transformation targets.
  • Deputise for the Advanced MA Pharmacist as appropriate and when required.

Service improvement and management responsibilitiesAcross England the NHS SPS MA Service is provided through a workforce located across different geographical sites which are designated to host the NHS SPS. The post-holder will work collaboratively with other Pharmacy Professionals to achieve the objectives of the MA service.

The post-holder will support the scoping, organising and delivering of any changes to service delivery necessary across England in order to meet the ongoing objectives of the SPS MA national service.

Finance responsibilitiesThe post-holder will not have budgetary responsibility but will be expected to help ensure that the budgetary sum is managed appropriately in-year by maximising efficiencies wherever possible.

The post-holder will be expected to support SPS MA Hub Leads to ensure that future transformation of the NHS SPS MA Service is managed appropriately, both in relation to service development and in relation to financial responsibility. This will include helping to ensure that service transformation objectives are met in a manner which is safe, effective and delivers efficiencies.

Research and innovationThe post-holder would be expected to undertake and promote research & development, where such activities support the broader strategic objectives of the SPS MA. They will also be expected to support the development and delivery of innovative approaches to the delivery of the SPS MA Service. This will include the following:
  • Support transformation of the NHS SPS MA Service such that it is provided consistently and equitably across England and is aligned to NHSEI commissioning expectations.
  • Support achieving economies of scale, reduced duplication, and increased ability to meet commissioner and user needs as part of the national NHS SPS specification.
  • Support developing and implementing qualitative and quantitative measures to determine performance against the organisational strategy.
  • Gathering, analysing and critically appraising service data as a crucial component of determining both the baseline state and the success of future transformation plans.
  • Working with SPS MA Hub Leads to ensure appropriate transformation of the SPS MA services.

Management responsibilitiesThe post-holder may have line management and oversight responsibility for a small number of pharmacists based in their base centre and staff who deliver elements of this service on other geographical sites which are designated to host elements of the NHS SPS. This may include dealing with difficult situations involving significant changes to the roles and responsibilities of some individuals and as such may require the post-holder to support formal consultation processes where necessary.

The post-holder is expected to manage, train, appraise and set direction for pharmacy professional(s). The post-holder will:
  • Directly manage, undertake individual appraisals, and agree objectives.
  • Ensure appropriate supervision of more junior staff within the teams.
  • Participate in, and take responsibility for, regular training of the NHS SPS MA colleagues as appropriate.
  • Directly supervise the work of colleagues, particularly as it pertains to the work of the NHS SPS MA Service
  • Work in a multi-disciplinary way with various stakeholders

Information Management skillsThe post holder will be expected to have an intermediate level of proficiency with Microsoft Office software packages. They will also be expected to have an intermediate level of proficiency using other software packages that support efficient, national team operations (e.g. MS Teams, MS OneDrive, MS SharePoint, NHS Futures).

They will also be expected to have some familiarity with the bespoke software package, MiDatabank, and to understand the strengths and limitations, as well as to develop and implement its role to enable transformation of t h e NHS SPS Medicines Advice service.

The post-holder will support the implementation and maintenance of the digital solution to support operational management of the NHS SPS MA Clinical Enquiry service, as appropriate. They will also be expected to have some familiarity with the operational aspects of developing content for the SPS website.

Key working relationships and accountability

The post-holder will:
  • Be accountable for their own actions and those of any staff that they line manage.
  • Manage their own work under the direction of the SPS MA Advanced Pharmacist, or SPS MA Associate Hub Leads.
  • Support the transformation of the NHS SPS MA Service.
  • Represent the NHS SPS MA at a range of meetings with stakeholders, commissioners and providers from across the NHS as required.
  • Be expected to act largely independently, with minimum input from senior pharmacists, and to behave and act in a manner consistent with the values of the NHS SPS.
  • Be an expert in the delivery of at least one of the three arms of SPS MA (RMOC, clinical enquiry answering or developing information and resources), and be credible across a wide range of stakeholders, commissioners and providers.
  • Where appropriate and necessary, the post-holder will be expected to provide medicines advice relating to a specialist service.
  • Support the Advanced MA Pharmacist to work with a range of diverse stakeholders across pharmacy and elsewhere; these will be both regional and national colleagues. Such individuals may have different views on how particular projects and pieces of work should be taken forward. They may also have differingagendas and areas of interest. Asserts own view and position assertively and with reference to the problem being addressed. Seeks to find consensus where possible. Knows when to refer to the relevant SPS Advanced MA Pharmacist, or SPS MA (Associate) Hub Lead where appropriate.
  • Maintain concentration for prolonged periods of time, while writing, checking or evaluating information.
  • The post-holder would be expected to deputise for SPS Advanced MA Pharmacist when necessary.

Other aspects of the role

The post-holder would be expected to have key relationships across the Specialist Pharmacy Service. At time, relationships will be expected with, but not confined to, senior Medicines Optimisation and pharmacy field:
  • NHS SPS Senior Management Team
  • UK Medicines Information
  • Lead specialist clinicians in both primary and secondary care
  • Clinical Commissioning Groups/ Integrated care Systems
  • NHS England Regional Chief Pharmacists
  • NHS England Regional Medical Directors
  • NHS England Medicines Policy Unit
  • Area prescribing committees
  • NHS Improvement National Safe Medication Practice team

Person Specification

Education/ Qualifications


  • Pharmacist (Registered with the General Pharmaceutical Council)
  • Post-graduate diploma in clinical pharmacy or other relevant field, e.g. management, or equivalent experience of working in specialist area


  • Post-graduate qualification, i.e. MSc, in clinical pharmacy, or equivalent experience
  • Post graduate qualification in evidence-based healthcare, or equivalent
  • Post-graduate level original research and/or publication in an area relevant specifically to the delivery of Medicines Optimisation

Knowledge & Experience


  • In depth knowledge of Medicines Optimisation as it pertains to both primary and secondary care
  • Significant experience delivering medicines advice to health care professionals, its current provision across England through SPS, and its role in supporting Medicines Optimisation
  • A clear understanding of project management
  • Experience of working in a complex matrix type working environment within a diffuse national organisation


    Any attachments will be accessible after you click to apply.


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