A-Z MiCAL Content

The following table is designed to indicate to both trainers and learners the knowledge and skills covered by MiCAL sections:


Learning outcome for user

Using MiCAL

Know how to navigate around the MiCAL programme and complete tasks such as saving/printing work.

Enquiry answering skills:
Introduction to medicines information


Know some of the important roles of the UKMi network.
Know why documentation is required and when to document medicines related questions.

Enquiry answering skills:
Questioning skills

Know the types of communication used in responding to medicines related questions.
Know the elements to active listening.
Know the basic questions to ask common to any medicines related question.
Show what types of questions (open/closed/probing) to ask for various mock scenarios and know why.

Enquiry answering skills:
Where to look for information:

Know the difference between primary, secondary and tertiary resources and show understanding through questioning.
Know resources useful for various categories of medicines related questions.
Show understanding of the advantages and disadvantages of resources through questioning.
Know the basic principles behind the Medline and Embase literature searching database.
Show understanding of MeSH and EMTREE through questioning.
Do a number of literature searches in Medline and Embase.

Enquiry answering skills:
Answering the question

Know why it is important to develop a good answer.
Know the elements that make a good answer.
Show application of the elements that formulate a good answer.

Clinical Tutorials

Know the basic medicines related issues associated with various clinical topics.
Show understanding of these issues through questioning.
(topic range: adverse drug effects, complementary medicine, contraception and hormone replacement therapy, drug abuse, drug administration, drugs in breast feeding, drugs in pregnancy, drug interactions, infections & microbiology, legal and ethical issues, paediatrics, palliative care, pharmaceuticals, psychiatry, renal and liver impairment, and travel)

Enquiry answering scenarios

Do a selection of case scenarios to apply knowledge and skills gained from ‘enquiry answering skills’ and ‘advanced skills’ sections in order to formulate a good answer to the question/issues raised.
Do the MCQ test pre-case scenario to determine level of topic understanding and compare this to the outcome of the post-case scenario MCQ test.
Show how to approach medicines related questions in a logical manner and formulate an appropriate practice based response based on good quality evidence.
(topic range: medicines in breast feeding, adverse drug reactions, travel medicine, pharmacokinetics, IV compatibility, IV administration, drug interactions, complementary medicines, medicines in pregnancy, oral medicine administration, medicines in psychiatry, medicines in liver disease, and covert administration of medicines)

Advanced skills:
Patient Safety

Know the definition of a ‘near miss’ and ‘error’ associated with incidents.
Know the elements for a root cause analysis.
Show understanding of ‘near miss’ and ‘error’ definitions through questioning.
Know a few features of incident reporting systems.

Advanced skills:
Critical appraisal

Know why critical appraisal of primary literature is required.
Know the various types of trial designs used and their advantages and disadvantages.
Do a critical appraisal of a published randomised control trial (RCT) using a CASP tool.
Know the relevance of various statistical measures used in primary literature, e.g. relative risk reduction, etc.
Do various statistical calculations for the RCT assessed.

Advanced skills:
Writing skills

Know what effective writing is and when it should be used.
Know the various types of writing structures commonly used.
Know what things need to be checked or considered when writing.
Know the common pitfalls in writing.
Know how to use the Gunning Fog index
Show how to use the Gunning Fog index through questioning.

Advanced skills:
Calculation scenarios

Know the principles behind common calculations encountered in pharmacy practice.
Do calculations to apply these principles to various scenarios.
(topic range: dilutions of solutions, dilutions of solid preparations, mixing of solutions, displacement values, converting medications, and half-lives)

MiDatabank Trainer

Know how to install the MiDatabank trainer onto a PC.
Know how to create and complete enquiries in MiDatabank Trainer.
Do enquiries based on MiCAL case scenarios in MiDatabank.