Specialty Practice FAQs

Please read these Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) to learn more about Specialty Practice. Please contact the Specialty Practice team if you have further queries.

Specialty Practice caters for all levels of expertise and career stages: 

  • pharmacy students and interns; 
  • technicians and assistants; 
  • early-career, rotational and generalist pharmacists; 
  • emerging leaders and specialists; and 
  • highly accomplished specialists and recognised leaders.

Specialty Practice Groups are the foundation and entry level of Specialty Practice. They are online communities of interested pharmacy students and interns; technicians; early-career, rotational and generalist pharmacists; emerging leaders and specialists; as well as members who are highly accomplished specialists and recognised leaders in the specialty.

Specialty Practice Group members have an online hub of information and resources relevant to the specialty, and discussions where they seek advice, ask questions and share knowledge.

You can progress through any specialty as far as you want to match your practice. 

Join Specialty Practice Groups (SPGs) in all specialties of interest to you or relevant to your practice that you want to keep up to date with and connect with their online community. 

Apply to be a Verified Member (formerly Practice Group member) in SPGs in which you are accomplished and invested and your current practice aligns with, and you want opportunities to work with SHPA and the Leadership Committee on projects. 

Progress to Leadership Committee if you would like to use your expertise to influence pharmacy practice in the specialty, help shape SHPA’s work in the specialty and be recognised as a leader. You will still be a member of the Interest Group and Practice Group.

Specialty Practice Groups (SPGs) are the entry level of Specialty Practice. You can find out more about them and join any Specialty Practice Group by following the links to Specialty Practice in your SHPA member dashbord. 

Once you are in a Specialty Practice Group, you can learn more about becoming a Verified Member (formerly Practice Group member) or Leadership Committee member if you want to deepen your involvement.

No. Participating in SHPA Specialty Practice, at any level, is a free member benefit for all SHPA members.

Yes. All SHPA members, including students and interns, are eligible to join Specialty Practice Groups.

Students and interns cannot be a Verified Member Leadership Committee member. 

Yes. Technician members are eligible to join Specialty Practice Groups, be Verified Members and be elected to Leadership Committees.

Technician members cannot Chair a Leadership Committee, except for the Technicians and Assistants Leadership Committee, which must be chaired by a Technician member.

Yes. There is no limit to the number of Specialty Practice Groups you can join. You can join all that are are of interest to you or relevant to your practice. As your practice changes, you can join more SPGs and leave SPGs that are no longer relevant.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health
Aid and Volunteering*
Clinical Trials
Compounding Services
Critical Care
Dispensing and Distribution
Education and Educational Visiting
Emergency Medicine
General Medicine
Geriatric Medicine
Infectious Diseases
Leadership and Management
Medical Specialties*
Medication Safety
Medicines Information
Mental Health
Oncology and Haematology
Paediatrics and Neonatology
Pain Management
Palliative Care
Pharmacy Informatics and Technology (formerly Electronic Medication Management)
Rural and Remote
Surgery and Perioperative Medicine
Technicians and Assistants
Transitions of Care and Primary Care
Voluntary Assisted Dying*
Women's and Newborn Health

*These SPGs do not have Verified Members or Leadership Committees

Your engagement with Specialty Practice can be tailored to meet your needs. Choose the level of engagement that reflects your practice in each specialty – join all of the SPGs that are relevant to your practice to access the online communities and discussions in these specialties; progress as  Verified Member or nominate for the Leadership Committee in areas you specialise and seek deeper involvement in.  

Members of Specialty Practice Groups who are accomplished and invested in the specialty and want to contribute to SHPA projects can apply to be a Verified Member. 

As SHPA’s pool of member expertise, Verified Members, work with SHPA and Leadership Committees on SHPA projects such as education, publications, advocacy and more. 

Verified Members are members who are accomplished and invested in the specialty, they might be a specialist or on the way to being a specialist, and want to contribute to SHPA projects and help develop pharmacy practice in the specialty. Verifie Members have opportunities to work on education events, publications, standards of practice, advocacy, provide expert opinion and more. 

Being a Verified Member gives you a voice and opportunities to use your expertise, a wider reach and a platform to showcase your skills.

Verified Members are eligible to nominate for election to the Leadership Committee.

Submit a Verified Member application with your CV and information about your expertise and experience in the specialty for review by the Leadership Committee.

As a Verified Member of a Specialty Practice Group you will continue to participate in SPG discussions and support your fellow members of the SPG.

When SHPA or the Leadership Committee is seeking member expertise for projects or expert opinion, the Verified Members of the SPG will be offered opportunities.

As a Verified Member you will be eligible to nominate for election to the Leadership Committee.

You can remain as a Verified Member for as long as you have expertise in the specialty and are intersted in contributing to SHPA projects and influencing practice, provided your SHPA membership remains current.

You relinquish your Verified Member status at any stage by informing the Specialty Practice team

Each Leadership Committees is a dynamic and supportive group of SEVEN passionate leaders elected from the SPG's Verified Members. They meet monthly by videoconference and work with SHPA to develop and influence pharmacy practice in the specialty and support members of the SPG.

Leadership Committee members are elected from the SPG's Verified Members. If you would like to be elected, you can nominate yourself when the call for nominations is open.

A Leadership Committee term is THREE years, members can nominate for subsequent terms. There is no limit on the number of terms a member serves as a Leadership Committee member. 

You can continue to be a member of SPGs during extended leave - including retaining your Verified Member status and serving on Leadership Committees. 

As long as your SHPA membership is current, your Specialty Practice involvement does not need to change, except by your own choice, e.g. if you would be unable to attend or contribute to Leadership Committee meetings as a Leadership Committee member.

Specialty Practice can save you time. Through SPG Discussions you can tap into the expertise of peers and leaders across the country and learn from their practice. Specialty Practice can help you avoid replicating work that has been done already as members frequently share their procedures and guidelines.

SPG Discussions are stored indefinitely and are searchable so, while reading Discussion posts daily is desirable, it is not essential.

Verified Members can choose which projects to be involved in according to their capacity when opportunities arise.

Leadership Committee members attend monthly, one-hour meetings by videoconference, and take on additional roles that are not onerous, e.g. moderating the SPG Discussions or assessing Verified Member applications. More substantial roles, e.g. seminar lead or tutor, author of Standard of Practice are optional.

Yes, if your involvement in Specialty Practice informs your practice, it is CPD. Every time you learn something new, confirm existing knowledge, reflect on your practice, teach another member something – it is professional development and can be included in your CPD record.  

Being a Leadership Committee member is definitely something to include on your CV. Being elected as a Leadership Committee member recognises your leadership and expertise in the specialty.

Adjust your SPG Discussions notification settings to prioritise the SPGs, topics and discussions you want to be notified of, and whether that includes by email.