National Foundation Trainee Pharmacist Recruitment Scheme
Terms of Participation and Managing and Maintaining Quality

Funding and Recruitment Polices

All foundation trainee pharmacist posts must recruit via the National Recruitment Scheme (NRS). No places are available outside of this route.

Employers will accept the applicants allocated to them following assessment and ranking, subject to standard pre-employment checks. All applicants will be recruited in accordance with the nationally agreed person specification and Professional Attributes Framework. This includes:

applicants who require less than full time working. The GPhC defines less than full time working as at least 17.5 hours per week worked over at least three days a week

applicants requiring completion of training according to the GPhC interim Learning Outcomes (for example OSPAP applicants)

Employers will be responsible for undertaking pre-employment checks and for issuing appropriate contracts of employment and are expected to contact trainees as soon as reasonably possible after allocations have been announced.

Employers will pay at least the minimum salary for entry to the NRS, which is currently £20,821 for a 35-hour week (adjusted for actual hours worked) and will honour the advertised salary and contracted hours as displayed in their programme information on Oriel. Should this salary fall below the threshold for the National Living Wage by the time the trainee begins their training, the salary must be increased accordingly (see here:

The advertised salary will not be subject to further deductions upon payment to the trainee (for example, charging the trainee for external training provision payments). For clarity, the trainee should be paid the full salary as indicated in the programme information on Oriel (or pro rata if the trainee is working less than full time)

Employers will be responsible for immigration related checks / appropriate visa sponsorship. If a trainee requiring Skilled Worker Visa sponsorship is appointed, those Employers advertising as a sponsor on Oriel will pay at least the salary stipulated by the Government at the time of employment, regardless of the salary stated at the time of application to the NRS. Should a trainee be appointed who does not require a Skilled Worker Visa, the salary stated at the time of application to the NRS must be honoured.

To support consistent inductions and appropriate allocation of staff, Employers should ensure trainees begin their training on a suitable date within the below windows:

Summer window: 14th July 2025 to 4th August 2025

Autumn window: 20th October 2025 to 10th November 2025

Regulatory Requirements

Employers must ensure that their allocated foundation trainee pharmacist trains at an approved Training Site and follows an approved Training Plan that allows them to meet the GPhC Learning Outcomes for the Foundation Training Year

In accordance with GPhC requirements, Employers must ensure that the trainee will have access to:

a Prescribing Learning Environment

a Designated Supervisor

a Designated Prescribing Practitioner

Employer Programme Information

Employers will be responsible for:

providing detailed programme information as per the NRS registration process

checking the accuracy of their programme information on Oriel

Employers will not withdraw programmes from the NRS once advertised unless in exceptional circumstances. Typically, programmes are displayed on Oriel in the June of the year prior to the training programme commencing.

Some programmes require trainees to work across multiple practice settings and with multiple Employers. For these programmes, one lead Employer must be identified. It is the responsibility of the lead Employer to work with and share information with other Employers within the same programme. This information will include, but is not restricted to, allocated trainee details, programme information and communication about the NRS.

Employer Information and Communication

Employers agree to the Oriel privacy policy (available at the foot of the Oriel website homepage)

Employers agree to receive communications relating to the NRS

Employers agree to receive communications relating to subsequent Foundation Training Year activity and relevant NHS England workforce planning and training initiatives

Managing and Maintaining Quality

Employers must engage with the NHS England Workforce Training and Education (formerly Health Education England) Quality Framework

Employers must use the NHS England Foundation Trainee Pharmacist Assessment Strategy

Employers must use the NHS England Foundation Trainee Pharmacist E-portfolio

Employers must undertake Disclosure and Barring Service Checks (DBS) for all allocated trainees

Employers should ensure that all allocated trainees complete Equality and Diversity, Safeguarding Vulnerable Adults and Children and Information Governance training appropriate to the role being undertaken

Employers will support trainees to complete the National Education and Training Survey (NETS) or equivalent as directed by NHS England Workforce, Training and Education, to ensure ongoing feedback on the training programme

All designated supervisors must comply with the requirements of the NHS England Workforce, Training and Education standards for supervisors

All trainee pharmacists will be provided with dedicated time each week for development e.g. study time, intra- and inter-professional development, and reflection

What the NHS England National Recruitment Office will be responsible for:

Management of applications via the national recruitment system (Oriel)

Confirmation of eligibility of applicants through the longlisting process

Management of interview/assessment centres

Applicant communications

Management of offers to applicants

Release of successful applicant information to employers

Evaluation of the recruitment process