How long have you been in your pharmacy role?
I have been in my current chief pharmacy technician role for almost three years.
However, I have worked in South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust pharmacy for 23 years undertaking several roles such as assistant, assistant technical officer (ATO), pre-registration student pharmacy technician, clinical pharmacy technician, acting senior pharmacy technician for stores and procurement, and senior clinical pharmacy technician.
Also incorporated during this time was the rotation through aseptics, outpatients pharmacy, dispensary, and clinical duties, all of which have allowed me to gain invaluable and wide-ranging pharmacy experience.
What qualifications did you need and where did you gain them?
I originally started as an assistant in the store in June 2000, I had no previous pharmacy experience, but this made me realise the career I wanted to pursue.
I went back to college to gain GCSEs in chemistry and human physiology and health which allowed me to apply for the pre-reg student pharmacy technician role.
Whilst I was a pre-reg student pharmacy technician, I gained the qualifications of NVQ level three in pharmacy services and BTEC in pharmaceutical science prior to registering with the GPhC as a pharmacy technician.
During my career at The James Cook University Hospital, I have been given the opportunity to progress by gaining qualifications, which is something that I have very much enjoyed.
I have qualified as an Accredited Checking Technician (ACT), completed modules one to three of medicines management and become a green belt in lean six sigma.
I have also completed a regional training course to become an educational supervisor.
This role involves assessing, supporting, and mentoring candidates throughout their training to complete modules one, two and three of Medicines Management (MM) and ACT.
I continue to support candidates completing MM and ACT and meet monthly with the other educational supervisors.
I am a system administrator for informatics systems within the trust such as Omnicell, Mobileview and Vocera.
I have recently completed the management and leadership courses, human performance practitioner and the exducis code.
Tell us something about your role people might not be aware of…
I am responsible for the planning, organisation, and delivery of pharmacy technical and support services in dispensary, stores and procurement, ward based clinical service and oversee administrative services, education and training and Omnicell.
I am also in-charge for all pharmacy technicians and support workers providing these services within the dispensary, store and clinical services at the trust.
I directly line manage the senior technicians who lead these areas and meet them regularly to support them to ensure the department is functioning at an optimal level.
I work very closely with the pharmacy senior leadership team to drive service improvement across the pharmacy department and organisation to deliver the departmental vision and strategy.
What do you like about working at South Tees in pharmacy?
I really enjoy my job and consider it a privilege to be the chief pharmacy technician in a department and trust I care deeply about and have been very proud to work for, for so long.
Seeing the department and staff continue to grow exponentially fills me with immense pride and I want to ensure that my staff is given all the opportunities I have been afforded to progress in their careers.