Barts Health NHS Trust
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My name is Tase. I am a hospital pharmacist.
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As a hospital pharmacist, my job at the moment deals with the high cost drugs,
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and I am responsible for how those drugs are brought
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into the hospital for use and ensuring that they’re used in the correct way.
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We also look at the drugs that are delivered direct to people’s homes.
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So those are very, very specialised drugs as well.
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Hospital pharmacists do lots and lots of other things.
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So I started off as a clinical pharmacist working on the wards
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directly with doctors.
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That was a really exciting, enjoyable time for me.
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I got a lot of pleasure out of it because you could see
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the impact of my work on the patients straightaway.
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When you do become a hospital pharmacist there’s so many other things that you can do.
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So I’ve spent some time in the manufacturing unit
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and this is where we make the medicines in a sterile environment
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for the patients to use.
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And that’s the joy of being a pharmacist
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is that you get to do so many different things.
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At school, the GCSEs that I did were just a varied
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mix of GCSEs. And at A-level
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I decided to keep my options open by doing
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biology and chemistry and taking an A-level in French.
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I wanted to use a mix of my chemistry
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and to really focus on the chemistry aspects of things,
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and pharmacy was flagged as one of those subject areas
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where I could still do that and still be involved with people
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and with patients and still work very closely with patients.
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So that’s why I chose pharmacy.
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First and foremost as a pharmacist, the strengths that you really need
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and the skills that you really need are attention to detail.
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You literally hold people’s lives
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in your hands when you get those medicines and give them to them
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so you have to be absolutely sure what it is that you are either dispensing
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or you are having a discussion with a doctor to prescribe.
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You have to take in a lot of information, be able to process that information
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and make a decision from that.
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And bear in mind, you’ve got a patient who is at the end
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of all those decisions that you make to do with their medicines,
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and you’ve also got to have quite good people skills.
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So being able to have a conversation with the patients and help them
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to understand their medicines and how to use their medicines
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in the right way is really, really important
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Try and get experience, maybe work in a local community pharmacy.
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Do Saturday jobs in a local chemist or pharmacy
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even just working in somewhere like Boots
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working alongside a pharmacist or pharmacy technician.
“You have to take in a lot of information, be able to process that information, and make a decision from that. And bear in mind, you’ve got a patient who is at the end of all those decisions.”
Tase wanted to combine her love of chemistry with the chance to work with patients so a pharmacy degree was a great fit. She is now responsible for how high-cost drugs are brought into the hospital and ensuring that they’re used in the correct way.
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More information about Pharmacists
The UK average salary is £28,758
There are 37.5 hours in the average working week
The UK workforce is 47% female and 53% male
- Prepares or directs the preparation of prescribed medicaments in liquid, powder, tablet, ointment or other form following prescriptions issued by medical doctors and other health professionals;
- Advises health professionals on the selection and appropriate use of medicines;
- Highlights a drug’s potential side effects, identifies harmful interactions with other drugs and assesses the suitability of treatments for patients with particular health conditions;
- Checks that recommended doses are not being exceeded and that instructions are understood by patients;
- Maintains prescription files and records issue of narcotics, poisons and other habit-forming drugs;
- Liaises with other professionals regarding the development, manufacturing and testing of drugs;
- Tests and analyses drugs to determine their identity, purity and strength;
- Ensures that drugs and medicaments are in good supply and are stored properly.
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