Independent/Supplementary Prescribing, PGCert Postgraduate prospectus

  • Available for pharmacists, nurses and allied health professionals (AHPs)
  • Fully accredited by GPhC, NMC and HCPC
  • Standard programme for community pharmacists, nurses, and AHPs
  • Clinically enhanced programme for hospital and mental health pharmacists

UCAS points



various years distance learning



There are two versions of this 8-month PG Certificate programme: standard and clinically enhanced. Both versions are part-time, distance learning programmes and enable a wide range of healthcare professionals to qualify as non-medical prescribers. Pharmacists, nurses, physiotherapists, podiatrists and therapeutic radiographers can qualify as independent prescribers while dietitians and diagnostic radiographers can qualify as supplementary prescribers. The qualification gained meets the standards set by the respective professional/regulatory bodies.

Nine study days at the university cover communication and diagnostic skills, the legal, policy, professional and ethical aspects of prescribing, pharmacology, and patient assessment and monitoring. The emphasis on each skill or aspect of non-medical prescribing is tailored to meet the needs of the different professions that we cater for. Students also spend 90 hours shadowing prescribers in clinical practice working in their chosen specialist area. Students on the clinically enhanced version of the programme also spend 20 hours of clinical skills practice.

See Medway School of Pharmacy website for more details of each version of the programme. Standard: and Clinically Enhanced:

Not sure you are ready? Try our Preparing for Prescribing (P4P) short courses first.

Level 6

Nurses can choose to study at Level 6 rather than Level 7. Those who study at Level 6 gain institutional credit (45 credits at Level 6). The two levels are taught together and are mapped to the same requirements as validated by the NMC but there is variation in the academic outcomes and expectations and are marked accordingly. There are four compulsory courses to complete.

Postgraduate Certificate (PG Cert) - Standard Programme

The full Level 7 programme gains you 60 credits and the award of a Postgraduate Certificate. There are four compulsory courses to complete. You can take the programme as a standalone Postgraduate Certificate in Independent/Supplementary Prescribing, or as one pathway into the Medicines Optimisation programme by studying prescribing as either the first or second year of the Medicines Optimisation postgraduate diploma. See PG Cert/Dip/MSc Medicines Optimisation for more details.

Postgraduate Certificate (PG Cert) – Clinically Enhanced Programme

The clinically enhanced version of the prescribing programme has been commissioned by the NHS and designed for hospital and mental health pharmacists and has an emphasis on clinical skills. There are two compulsory courses to complete. As with the standard programme you can take the programme as a standalone Postgraduate Certificate in Independent/Supplementary Prescribing, or as one pathway into the Medicines Optimisation programme. See above.

Who we are

The programme is run at the Medway School of Pharmacy by academics and healthcare professionals active in clinical practice. All of the team are qualified Non-Medical Prescribers.

What you'll study

PG Cert Independent/Supplementary Prescribing P11173

  • Non-medical Prescribing in Context (15 credits)
  • Safe and Effective Prescribing (15 credits)
  • Consultation and Decision Making (15 credits)
  • Putting Prescribing into Practice (15 credits)

PG Cert Independent/Supplementary Prescribing (Clinically Enhanced) P11173

  • Independent Prescribing in Practice (40 credits)
  • Clinical Health Assessment and Diagnostics (20 credits)

Practice Credit Prescribing (Independent and Supplementary) Level 6  P13583

  • Background to Non-Medical Prescribing (10 credits)
  • Prescribing Safely and Effectively (10 credits)
  • Embedding Prescribing in your Consultations (10 credits)
  • The Practice of Prescribing (15 credits)

Entry requirements

  • Registration with the appropriate professional/regulatory body (NMC, GPhC, PSNI or HCPC)
  • Appropriate experience in the area of practice in which applicant will be prescribing
  • The ability to study at academic Level 6 or Level 7
  • At least 2 years' post-registration clinical experience (pharmacists)
  • At least 3 years' post-registration clinical experience (nurses and AHPs)
  • Appropriate numeracy skills
  • Support from the sponsoring organisation confirming service need and access to appropriate supervised practice, and a prescribing budget to meet the costs of prescriptions on completion of training
  • A named designated medical practitioner who will facilitate, supervise and support the student during their clinical placement
  • AHP and nurse applicants must have a Disclosure and Barring Service check no more than three years old.

Extra information


Assessment (standard programme and level 6)

  • Course 1: Case study assignment, legislative essay
  • Course 2: Numeracy exam, multiple choice exam, pharmacology seen essay examination,
  • Course 3: Evidence based assignment, practical assessment
  • Course 4: Narrative based on portfolio entries covering 90 hours in clinical practice and attendance of period of learning in practice.

Assessment (clinically enhanced programme)

  • Course 1: Legislative essay, pharmacology essay, evidence-based assignment, practical assessment, portfolio of evidence (completed guide to the placement, a log of hours, reflection on progress, mapped to professional competencies and standards as required by the GPhC.)
  • Course 2: OSCEs, students will take six OSCE stations

Professional recognition

On successful completion, the school will notify the appropriate professional/regulatory body (GPhC, NMC or HCPC) that you have qualified as an independent/supplementary prescriber.


There is high and rising demand for both non-medical prescribing nurse practitioners and pharmacists in GP surgeries or other primary care settings. There are also enhanced career opportunities for radiographers, physiotherapists and podiatrists with the prescribing qualification.


Distance learning with nine compulsory study days at the university. Plus 90 hours in clinical practice.

Fees and finance

Your time at university should be enjoyable and rewarding, and it is important that it is not spoilt by unnecessary financial worries. We recommend that you spend time planning your finances, both before coming to university and while you are here. We can offer advice on living costs and budgeting, as well as on awards, allowances and loans.

Find out more about our fees and the support available to you at our:

Come and get a feel for what learning and life is like with us.

Next Open Day

Open Day dates

Apply now and begin your journey.

How to apply

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