Every month we will be featuring a pharmacy in our Alliance Link. This month we want to highlight Fiona, Pharmacist at Childers Community Pharmacy.
How long have you been a pharmacist?
I registered as a pharmacist at the end of 2000, which means almost 22 years. My career has mostly been in Hospital and Oncology, with only 2 years in community pharmacy as an Australian registered pharmacist. I spent a few years as a community pharmacist in South Africa before emigrating to Australia in 2004.
What made you want to pursue a career in pharmacy?
The honest answer is that I didn’t know what I’d like to study. My father pointed out that pharmacy would be a great choice for me as I always loved taking care of family members’ ailments and my love for chemistry at school. So much so that I completed my initial First Aid qualification using an oral exam as a 5-year-old!
How long have you been working at the Childers Community Pharmacy?
I will celebrate my one-year anniversary with the team in July.
What has been your proudest moment to date while working at Childers Community Pharmacy?
I have to say that it was the day we reached our 1000th Covid-19 vaccination a few months ago. An achievement for a single pharmacist site that can only be reached with an awesome team behind you!
How are you preparing your pharmacy & pharmacy team for the Cold & Cough season?
Ensure that the team’s knowledge with regards to OTC and pharmacist’s own cold and cough treatments are up to date. Recommending front-of-shop merchandising ie complementary and supportive care that can be recommended during the cold and cough season. And most importantly, ensuring the team all have the opportunity to have their Flu vaccinations.
What do you see some of the benefits are of being a part of Pharmacy Alliance?
The accessibility to a network of knowledge has been fantastic. In the Wide Bay Area, we have also been fortunate to help each other out during Covid staff shortages. Lastly, having a PBM to support business functions is a major benefit.
What is your biggest customer service tip?
Always be willing to go the extra mile, stay patient, and put on your smile. Yes, smile even with a mask on, your eyes will show it!
What do you think your point of difference is as a pharmacy in the Childers community?
We are in a prime position located next to the Woolworths in Childers. All our employees are locals with some of them having been there since the pharmacy opened. Customers love to be greeted by name plus we offer free deliveries.
Reflecting over the last 2 years of COVID-19 challenges – what has been the biggest opportunity?
The ability of pharmacies to deliver Covid-19 vaccinations, and more recent supervised RATs, especially in regional areas where customers can either not travel to the next town or have to wait 2-3 weeks to see the doctor.