Response to the HEFCE-HEE consultation on future supply of pharmacy graduates

15 November 2013

The Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) and Health Education England (HEE) conducted a review of the supply of pharmacy graduates to the pharmacy workforce in Autumn 2013.

The supply / demand ratio of trained pharmacists has shifted over recent years - from a position of shortage in 2010 to one of potential over-supply within England over the next twenty years. The modelling which predicts over-supply only considers the value of pharmacy graduates to the pharmacy workforce, but pharmacy can be a useful entry point to other careers requiring scientific thinking and skills. An over-supply against likely recruitment needs in the NHS is therefore not necessarily a ‘bad’ outcome; though it is important prospective students understand their future employment opportunities and make informed decisions.

Our preferred solution to the supply of pharmacy graduates would be to continue allowing the market to determine outcomes.  If appropriate market mechanisms are not in place or are not functioning effectively then it may be necessary to consider a control on UK/EU student intakes, with intake limits determined on the basis of quality of provision. If controls are to be considered then these should not cover other international students.

Response to the HEFCE-HEE consultation on future supply of pharmacy graduates

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