BPS approves ambulatory care designation; explores new specialties

April 20, 2011

The Board of Pharmacy Specialties announced at its April meeting that the official designation for pharmacists who pass the ambulatory care pharmacy specialty certification exam would be Board Certified Ambulatory Care Pharmacist.

The Board of Pharmacy Specialties (BPS) announced at its April meeting that the official designation for pharmacists who pass the ambulatory care pharmacy specialty certification exam would be Board Certified Ambulatory Care Pharmacist. These pharmacists will carry the designation BCACP.

Ambulatory care pharmacy is the newest BPS specialty. The first examination, which will be offered at 45 locations worldwide, is on October 1, 2011. Candidates will be tested on 5 domains including direct patient care; practice management; public health; retrieval, generation, interpretation and dissemination of knowledge; and patient advocacy. Candidates can obtain a complete content outline for the examination at: http://bpsweb.org/specialties/AmbulatoryCarePharmacy.pdf.

In other news, BPS recently approved role delineation studies in pain and palliative care, critical care, and pediatrics to determine if these 3 practice areas are based upon specialized knowledge of the pharmaceutical sciences, as well as specialized functions routinely performed in these proposed specialties. BPS will follow the criteria outlined in BPS Petitioner’s Guide for Recognition of a Pharmacy Practice Specialty should the delineation studies yield information that the 3 practice areas be recognized as specialty practices in pharmacy. This process, which culminates in the administration of a certification exam, takes about 3 years.

BPS announced the formation of a practice analysis task force for pain and palliative care pharmacy. It will also post a call for nominees for the 10-member practice analysis task forces for the proposed critical care and pediatrics specialties. Appointments will occur in June and the role delineation studies in critical care and pediatrics will begin in July.

“The conduct of the 3 role delineation studies demonstrates the active commitment of BPS to recognize pharmacy specialties and certify pharmacists’ knowledge and skill at the advanced practice level. The exploration of new specialties is consistent with the increased interest and recognition of BPS specialty certification over the past 5 years where the number of board certified pharmacists has doubled,” said William M. Ellis, BPS executive director.

For more information on BPS activities, including applying for the 2011 examination, visit www.bpsweb.org.