Certificate IV in Community Pharmacy

This qualification provides the skills and knowledge for an individual to be competent to work in a community pharmacy. Likely functions within the community pharmacy industry for those who achieve this level of competency include maintaining store safety and security, managing sales and customer service, leading and managing staff and managing merchandise and store presentation.

The structure of this qualification recognises the diversity of business models that characterise the community pharmacy industry. It supports multi-skilling and participation in work teams as appropriate to the size and structure of the business.

This qualification is designed to reflect the role of individuals who work relatively autonomously under broad supervision of the pharmacist. They also coordinate and supervise others in the workplace. The role involves the use of a broad knowledge base incorporating some theoretical concepts and requires the identification, analysis and evaluation of information from a variety of sources.

This qualification is suitable for an Australian Apprenticeship pathway.

Job roles

Pharmacy assistant



To achieve a Certificate IV in Community Pharmacy, 33 units must be completed:

all 22 core units

11 elective units. Elective units may be selected as follows.

A maximum of 6 units may be selected from the Elective Units in Group A below.

A minimum of 5 and a maximum of 11 elective units may be selected from the Elective Units in Group B below.

A maximum of 2 elective units may be selected from Group C below.

A maximum of 5 elective units may be selected from elsewhere in the Retail Services Training Package or from any other endorsed Training Package or accredited course. These must be units which are packaged within a Certificate III or IV qualification in the parent Training Package. Training Packages that overlap with Community Pharmacy activities include Health, Business Services and Beauty.

Elective units selected must be additional to those already counted towards a lower level qualification within this Training Package.

In all cases selection of electives must be guided by the job outcome, local industry requirements and the characteristics of this qualification (as per the AQF descriptors).


add topic HLTCSD306B

Respond effectively to difficult or challenging behaviour

add topic SIRPDIS001A

Accept prescriptions and deliver medicine

add topic SIRPPKS001A

Support the sale of pharmacy and pharmacist-only medicines

add topic SIRPPKS002A

Identify, locate and sell products related to allergies

add topic SIRPPKS003A

Identify, locate and sell analgesic and anti-inflammatory products

add topic SIRPPKS005A

Identify, locate and sell cough and cold products

add topic SIRPPKS006A

Identify, locate and sell eye, ear and oral care products

add topic SIRPPKS007A

Identify, locate and sell products for gastro-intestinal conditions

add topic SIRPPKS008A

Identify, locate and sell first aid and wound care products

add topic SIRPPKS009A

Identify, locate and sell products for skin and fungal conditions

add topic SIRPPKS010A

Assist in the management of pharmacy and pharmacist-only medicines

add topic SIRXCCS003A

Coordinate interaction with customers

add topic SIRXIND001A

Work effectively in a retail environment

add topic SIRXINV001A

Perform stock control procedures

add topic SIRXMER001A

Merchandise products

add topic SIRXMGT003A

Lead and manage people

add topic SIRXOHS001A

Apply safe working practices

add topic SIRXOHS002A

Maintain store safety

add topic SIRXOHS003A

Provide a safe working environment

add topic SIRXRSK001A

Minimise theft

add topic SIRXRSK002A

Maintain store security

add topic SIRXSLS005A

Manage sales service and delivery


Community Pharmacy: Dispensary

add topic SIRPDIS003A

Assist in dispensary operations

add topic SIRPDIS004A

Assist in dispensary stock control

add topic SIRPDIS005A

Assist in preparing dose administration containers

add topic SIRPDIS006A

Assist in preparing extemporaneous prescriptions

Community Pharmacy: Product

add topic SIRPPKS011A

Provide information, products and services on asthma

add topic SIRPPKS012A

Provide information, products and services on blood pressure

add topic SIRPPKS013A

Provide information, products and services on complementary medicine

add topic SIRPPKS014A

Provide information, products and services on diabetes

add topic SIRPPKS015A

Provide information, products and services on diet, nutrition and weight management

add topic SIRPPKS016A

Provide information, products and services to support home health care

add topic SIRPPKS017A

Provide information, products and services on pregnancy and maternal health

add topic SIRPPKS018A

Provide information, products and services on smoking cessation

add topic SIRPPKS019A

Provide information, products and services on women's and men's health

add topic SIRPPKS020A

Provide information, products and services on wound care


Cleaning and Maintenance

add topic SIRXCLM002A

Manage store facilities


add topic SIRXEBS001A

Acquire and retain online customers

add topic SIRXEBS002A

Manage retail brands online

add topic SIRXEBS003A

Manage and promote business to business e-commerce solutions

add topic SIRXEBS004A

Select an e-business model


add topic SIRXFIN004A

Manage financial resources

add topic BSBFIA302A

Process payroll


Human Resources Management

add topic SIRXHRM001A

Administer human resources policy

add topic SIRXHRM002A

Recruit and select personnel

add topic TAAASS401A

Plan and organise assessment

add topic TAADEL402A

Facilitate group-based learning

add topic TAADEL404A

Facilitate work-based learning


add topic SIRXINV004A

Buy merchandise

add topic SIRXINV005A

Control inventory


add topic SIRXMER004A

Manage merchandise and store presentation

Risk Management and Security

add topic SIRXRSK004A

Control store security



add topic SIRXADM001A

Apply retail office procedures

add topic SIRXADM002A

Coordinate retail office

Computer Operations and ICT Management

add topic SIRXICT001A

Operate retail technology

Community Pharmacy: Dispensary

add topic SIRPDIS002A

Deliver prescription medicines to customers outside the pharmacy


add topic SIRXFIN001A

Balance point-of-sale terminal

add topic SIRXFIN002A

Perform retail finance duties

add topic SIRXFIN003A

Produce financial reports

Human Resources Management

add topic BSBWOR301A

Organise personal work priorities and development

add topic TAADEL301A

Provide training through instruction and demonstration of work skills

add topic TAAASS301A

Contribute to assessment


add topic SIRXINV002A

Maintain and order stock



add topic SIRPMER001A

Market and promote pharmacy products and services area

add topic SIRXMER002A

Coordinate merchandise presentation

Management and Leadership

add topic SIRXMGT001A

Coordinate work teams

add topic SIRXMGT002A

Maintain employee relations

add topic SIRXMGT006A

Initiate and implement change

Quality and Innovation

add topic SIRXQUA005A

Maintain operational quality and productivity

Risk Management and Security

add topic SIRXRSK003A

Apply store security systems and procedures


add topic SIRXSLS003A

Coordinate sales performance

add topic SIRXSLS004A

Build relationships with customers

Community Pharmacy: Product

add topic SIRPPKS004A

Identify, locate and sell baby and infant products

Retail Product Knowledge

add topic SIRXRPK001A

Recommend health and nutritional products and services

add topic SIRXRPK002A

Recommend hair, beauty and cosmetic products and services


    Not applicable.

Entry Requirements

Entry requirements

There are no prerequisites for entry to this qualification.

Licensing Information

Not applicable.

Employability Skills


SIR40107 Certificate IV in Community Pharmacy

The following table contains a summary of the employability skills required by the community pharmacy industry for this qualification. The employability skills facets described here are broad industry requirements that may vary depending on qualification packaging options.

Employability skill

Industry/enterprise requirements for this qualification include:


Apply communication skills to provide instruction and feedback, mentor others in the workplace and co-ordinate customer service. Interact with customers who may be elderly, ill or drug affected, often about highly personal and sensitive matters requiring empathy, tact and confidentiality. Be familiar with technical terms used to describe products and/or used in product and health care information.

Problem solving

Solve problems within a framework of established business procedures and protocols and with reference to the pharmacist. Respond to staffing and resource issues, investigate and resolve stock discrepancies and respond to customer requests.

Initiative and enterprise

Use initiative in identifying the most appropriate products and services for customers and maintain current knowledge of product range and market trends. Opportunities for initiative and enterprise occur within established business procedures and protocols and with reference to the pharmacist. Those responsible for marketing and merchandising develop and coordinate promotional strategies for community pharmacy products.


Work closely with the pharmacist and other members of the staff team (according to business size). Mentor workplace procedures and protocols to others, provide leadership and support team members to carry out their role.

Planning and organising

Support the pharmacist in planning and providing a safe and secure work environment and overseeing implementation of work procedures and protocols consistent with legislative, business and customer requirements. Identify and source required resources to support management of sales and customer service. Schedule work activities, co-ordinate inputs of specialist service providers and ensure that the required resources are available for the staff team to deliver business outcomes.


Manage their own time and overseeing or establishing schedules and routines for others in consultation with the pharmacist and/or other staff. Understand the legal context, including the boundaries of the job role and also an awareness of the special requirements for selling medicines and managing scheduled medicines. This involves a detailed understanding of the roles and responsibilities of the pharmacy assistant and how these relate to the role of the pharmacist.


Maintain current knowledge of market trends and products and services that could be sold by their pharmacy. Access a range of sources of information and expertise to update their own knowledge and provide current information to customers. Make current product knowledge available to other team members.


Update and maintain computer-based information and database systems. Sell a range of products including kits, aids and equipment. Understand how these items operate, to assist the customer in appropriate selection depending on their need/capacity, demonstrate safe use and provide information on care and maintenance as appropriate.

Due to the high proportion of electives required by this qualification, the industry/enterprise requirements described above for each employability skill are representative of community pharmacy in general and may not reflect specific job roles. Learning and assessment strategies for this qualification should be based on the requirements of the units of competency for this qualification.

Retail and Wholesale qualifications