The Australian Pharmacy Council (APC) announces their latest initiative aimed at supporting overseas-trained pharmacists by reducing up-front costs associated with the Eligibility Check process.

APC is splitting the initial eligibility fee, effective from March 21, 2024. The existing Eligibility Check fee includes:

  • a verification of qualifications and registration
  • work experience verification (if relevant and required)
  • a Skills Assessment Outcome letter (after candidates pass their exam).

APC is separating this upfront fee to allow candidates to only pay for each service if and when they need them.

APC Chief Executive Officer, Bronwyn Clark says this new approach not only lowers up-front costs but also offers a more personalised experience, putting candidates in control at each stage of their skills assessment process.

"We recognise each candidate's journey is unique, for example, some do not require a work experience verification, and a skills assessment outcome letter is only possible after successfully passing their exam.

"While the total cost for services remains the same, these changes allow candidates to select only the services they need, and only once they need them. This will also allow more time for candidates to gain experience before seeking a work experience verification if they need this," Ms Clark expressed.

All candidates who have paid under the old fee structure will not have to pay again for their Skills Assessment Outcome letter. APC is also retrospectively providing an additional credit to eligible candidates who have submitted and paid for their initial fee since 1 July 2023 and have not received a work experience verification. This ensures that eligible candidates are credited for services they either did not yet receive or require. APC is also reforming the work experience verification process to make it contemporary and better meet candidate and profession needs. This work is ongoing.

"We believe in fairness and transparency, and we care about our candidates' journeys. These pharmacists will make a large contribution to our current workforce, and we are committed to assisting their transition into Australian practice.

"We are focussed on innovation and continuous improvement, ensuring that our processes evolve to meet the dynamic needs of our candidates and the profession," Ms Clark concluded.

Candidates who are directly impacted by this initiative are being individually contacted by the APC with detailed information and guidance specific to their circumstance.

For details about this initiative, see fee changes for Eligibility Checks.

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