PCI instructs new institutions to submit SIF using Google form due to technical difficulties with its online portal.

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Following the earlier attempt to invite applications through its portal failing due to some technical issues, the Pharmacy Council of India (PCI) has announced that it will begin accepting the Standard Inspection Format (SIF) from those institutions that are applying for the first time for the academic year 2023–24 on April 26, 2023. The PCI site will be open for new institutions to apply for the 2023–24 academic year from April 3–9, 2023, as the Council had previously declared. Later, it also made the document declarations available for these institutions to upload in order to complete the approval procedure.

On April 13, it was said that the PCI portal for new institutions could not be launched owing to technical difficulties and that revised dates for the portal’s opening for new institutions making their first application will be published shortly. In this regard, the PCI has now made it clear that, in light of the discussions held at the executive committee meeting on April 19, it has decided “to invite SIF from April 26 to May 5, in Google form along with DD (demand draught) as per approved PERC (Pharmacy Education Regulatory Charges) for the institutions applying for the first time for the 2023–24 academic session, as there is technical problem in inviting application through online portal.”

On April 1, the Council announced that applications from new institutions will be accepted in three categories: those that were rejected during the 2022–2023 academic session and must complete only the SIF without the PERC; those that have already received approval for the 2023–2024 academic session and must complete only the SIF with the PERC; and those that plan to apply for the first time for the 2023–2024 academic session. Later, it was added that the institutions that had received approval during the 2022–2023 academic session and were then granted approval for 2023–2024 based on the Supreme Court order from February 17, 2023, and other similar orders, who needed to fill out only SIF without PERC, fell under the category of institutions that could submit applications during the time frame.

Seven regulations, including the Education Regulations, 2020 (for Diploma Course in Pharmacy), the Bachelor of Pharmacy (B.Pharm) Course Regulations, 2014, the Master of Pharmacy (M.Pharm) Course Regulations, 2008, the Bachelor of Pharmacy (Practise) Regulations, 2014, the Minimum Qualification for Teachers in Pharmacy Institutions Regulations, 2014, and the Pharmacy Practise Regulations, 2015, were previously informed to the applicants.

The PCI has developed the Schemes, which are available on the Council website under the procedure/forms tab, for the purpose of considering authorisation of the D.Pharm and B.Pharm courses. According to the programmes, it is a need for new institutions applying for the first time to submit a No Objection Certificate from the State government as well as the affiliation consent of the examination authority for the 2023–24 academic session for the B.Pharm course. The institution must submit the aforementioned message from the State Government as documentary evidence in the event that the State government has discontinued the issuing of NOC for beginning pharmacy courses.

It is required that new institutions applying for the first time receive the Examining Authority’s consent to affiliate for the academic year 2023–2024 for D.Pharm courses. The documents must be in English, have the Principal’s signature, and be legible, it was added. The PCI has made a number of payment mechanisms, including payments, available for the PERC payment. In order to ensure the financial security of the institutions’ stakeholders, it was further stated that the security deposit was not relevant at this time. The PCI stated in its earlier circular soliciting the applications that “…all pharmacy institutions are requested to make sure that they are able to obtain the statutory documents and submit the same along with the online SIF.”

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