Home' Australian Pharmacist : Australian Pharmacist April 2015 Contents Australian Pharmacist April 2015 I ©Pharmaceutical Society of Australia Ltd. 77
Performance level and
Demonstration of advanced professional
practice is intrinsically linked to
the concepts of 'performance' and
'performance level'. Each of these
terms is therefore examined to provide
additional context for how advanced
professional practice is defined.
The competency standards within
the National competency standards
framework for pharmacists in Australia
(the 'National Framework')2 have a
number of elements each of which has
several associated performance criteria.
In contrast, the competency standards
of the APPF are listed in a single column.
To the right of this column are three
columns labelled 'Transition level',
'Consolidation level' and 'Advanced
level' representing three different levels
in the continuum of advanced practice
development. Each column contains one
or several performance criteria for the
competency listed in the first column.
The term 'performance' has been
defined as 'an effective and persistent
observable behaviour. What an
individual actually does as opposed
to what they can do'.3 This definition
is supportive of the concept of
measuring or assessing performance by
applying relevant behavioural criteria.
Performance criteria are noted to 'focus
on key aspects of behaviour and express
what a competent professional would
do in terms of observable results or
behaviours. This allows the competency
standards to serve as the external
measure of expected performance
against which the actual performance of
an individual can be assessed'.1
Within the APPF 'performance level' is
described as 'a level of accomplishment
that reflects the expertise of the
individual based on their training
and experience' and defined as:
A characteristic of professional practice
that reflects the knowledge, skills and
experience of the pharmacist.1
Table 1. Definitions of terms
Terms relating to 'advanced practice'
1a* Advanced practice is practice that is so significantly different from
that achieved at initial registration that it warrants recognition
by professional peers and the public of the expertise of the
practitioner and the education, training and experience from which
that capability was derived.
1b An advanced practice radiation therapist is a 'clinical specialist' or
'expert' who has significant experience and the opportunity to
develop and demonstrate expertise within an area of specialisation.
The role requires a high level of knowledge and clinical experience.
1c The term 'advanced practice' means circumstances in which
a Diagnostic Radiographer or Radiation Therapist performs a
clinical practice, duty or task on a regular basis that is beyond the
established core practice boundaries of their profession. In doing
so the Advanced Practitioner demonstrates clinical leadership and
a high level of knowledge, skills, ability and personal attributes, as
well as professional autonomy and responsibility. These are applied
to a specific, delegated clinical role in order to provide optimum
service quality and patient care.
1d Advanced clinical practice involves high level clinical skills,
knowledge and practice. This advanced clinical capacity is
reinforced and enhanced by its close integration with clinical
leadership skills, applied clinical research and evidence based
practice capacities, and competence in facilitating the education
and training of others. Advanced clinical practice is relevant to
generalist and focussed clinical contexts, as well as profession-
specific situations and situations relating to specific client groups or
1e Advanced scope of practice is taken to mean an increase in clinical
skills, reasoning, knowledge and experience so the practitioner is an
expert working within the scope of traditional practice.
Terms relating to 'scope of practice'
2a The areas and extent of practice for an individual health
professional, usually defined by a regulatory body or employer,
after taking into consideration the health professional's training,
experience, expertise and demonstrated competency.
2b* Scope of practice is a time sensitive, dynamic aspect of practice
which demonstrates those professional activities that a pharmacist
is educated, competent and authorised to perform and for which
they are accountable.
Terms relating to 'extended scope of practice'
3a Extended scope of practice includes expertise beyond the currently
recognised scope of practice of the profession.
3b Extended scope of practice involves tasks which Advanced
Practice Radiation Therapists perform that are outside current
legislation. These tasks require a high level of knowledge and
clinical experience, accredited further education and ongoing
3c Extended scope of practice describes a discrete knowledge and skill
base additional to the recognised scope of practice of a profession
and/or regulatory context of a particular jurisdiction. Any health
practitioner, at any health practitioner level, might undertake tasks
that constitute extended scope of practice for their profession.
* Preferred definitions adopted by the APPFSC.
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