The Foreign Pharmacy Graduate Orientation Programme – FPGOP is a training exercise and examination conducted by the Pharmacists Council of Nigeria for pharmacists trained outside the shores of Nigeria to enable them to practice as pharmacists in Nigeria.
The FPGOP programme is only for candidates who passed through a recognised foreign pharmacy school to test their knowledge and train them on pharmacy laws and code of ethics, pharmacy practice in Nigeria.
They also acquainted the candidates with topics on tropical diseases and conditions (those obtainable in Nigeria), especially for those pharmacists who trained outside Sub-Saharan Africa.
How the FPGOP runs
They divided the FPGOP into two major programmes.
- The Regular Programme: This is a programme for pharmacist graduates with less than five years’ experience after graduation. The training is a 6-week programme.
- The Online Programme: This programme is a 3-week training for pharmacists who already have practicing license in their country of residence. The pharmacist must have at least five years post-qualification experience.
The PCN has also made the programme to run in two cycles per year. The first cycle runs from April to June, while the second cycle runs from August to September. It runs for approximately 6 weeks.
All the foreign-trained pharmacists must undergo this training before starting their one-year compulsory internship.
How to apply for the FPGOP Programme
All candidates who want to undergo this training should visit the PCN office. They must first write an application for participation in the FPGOP programme. The application letter has to be submitted together these necessary documents:
- A duly completed Application Form;
- O Level result (with five (5) credits passes in English, Language, Mathematics, Physics, Biology and Chemistry)
- Two (2) passport-size photographs
- Degree Certificate
- Birth Certificate / Age Declaration
- Original copy of Academic Transcript
- Certificate of Registration or Annual license to practice (Online programme);
- Evidence of payment.
Before the final submission, download the application form from the PCN portal and fill. There are two application forms to choose from depending on your programme:
Attach and submit the written application, the 8 required documents, and the filled application form for FPGOP to the PCN office.
PCN will review your application, and if you meet the requirement, the registry will notify you of acceptance.
Every candidate must state the center they want to undertake the training in their application.
The payment of $900 is for the regular programme. It amounts to 369,000 Naira, if we use the PCN exchange rate of N410 to a Dollar in 2021.
The online programme payment is the sum of $1500, which equals to N615,000.
*Note: The documents submitted must be the duly signed photocopies. However, the transcript must be the original copy.
Every candidate must apply before a stipulated deadline that is communicated by PCN. You can make every enquiry about any issue at the state office of PCN.
The fees you pay do not cover for accommodation and feeding. It is the duty of the pharmacist to cater to his/her welfare during the training.
The PCN has rotated the programme across the six geopolitical zones of the country. Each cycle of this training has two centres – one from the North, and another centre from the South.
In the April/June batch of 2021, The Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Benin, served as the center in the South. Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Bayero University, Kano was the place for North.
The second cycle that took place from August to September, The North Centre was the Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Ilorin, Kwara State. The Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Port-Harcourt, Rivers State served for the South.
There are up to many centers across the country for this programme.
FPGOP Interview, Lectures and Examination
There is accreditation of candidates before the commencement of lectures. On the opening day of the programme, there is a welcome address by the council and the introduction of Deans of pharmacy schools in Nigeria.
They interview each candidate on the first day. Each pharmacist faces a panel of 3 interviewers and will have to answer some basic questions on pharmacy knowledge, school projects, school attended. This is a measure by PCN to reduce the incidence of fake certificates.
The six-week training comprises classroom lectures and practical works in the laboratory. The courses are Clinical pharmacy, Pharmacology, Pharmacy Law or Forensic Pharmacy, Pharmaceutical Chemistry, Pharmaceutical Microbiology, Pharmacognosy, and Pharmaceutical Technology.
Lectures take place from 9 a.m to 3 p.m every day with the exemption of the weekend. Candidates might have to buy lecture notes, Pharmacy Law Book in Nigeria, Laboratory manual for Pharmaceutical Chemistry, Technology and Pharmacognosy.
The examination is a 100 Multiple-Choice Questions, and four Theory questions (to answer three)
At the end of the programme, PCN inducts successful candidates in Abuja and they can now go for internship training.