Pharmacy OSCEs and Competency-Based Assessments

Sharon Haughey, Roisin O'Hare

Research output: Book/ReportBook

Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationLondon
Number of pages229
ISBN (Print)978-0-7020-6701-3
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Bibliographical note

Prescribing medicines to a patient remains the most common intervention made by the National Health Service (
Medicines are crucial for maintaining health, preventing illness, managing chronic conditions and treating acute diseases. Where medicines are not used optimally, patients can end up either not getting the intended benefit or, at worst, suffering adverse effects and in some cases being admitted to hospital.
Undergraduate pharmacy students are required to know how to make and administer medicines, design and deliver medicines as well as diagnose and optimally treat illnesses. Patient care and safety is paramount during the undergraduate degree and beyond into pharmacy practise.
Evaluations of the competence of healthcare professional students, including undergraduate pharmacists, using simulated assessments including Objective Structured Clinical Examinations (OSCEs) and Criterion Referenced Assessments (CRAs) are increasingly commonplace.
OSCEs and CRAs simulate aspects of real-life future pharmacy practise and provide undergraduate students with the opportunity to integrate their knowledge of medicinal chemistry, pharmaceutics, therapeutics, legislation as well as their clinical skills, numeracy, communication, and empathy in order to demonstrate their ability to provide safe and effective patient care.
In terms of employability, it is also important that the pharmacy student develops the ability to ‘think on their feet’. Being able to make a decision, in a timely manner, which optimises patient care is one of the key skills that employers ask for time and time again.
The aim of this book is therefore to provide a resource to support students to develop and practice these key skills. This book is designed as a useful resource for undergraduate students, clinical tutors and those involved in teaching students on an undergraduate pharmacy degree course.

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