I started working in Boots near my hometown at the age of 16 as the Christmas temp on the perfume counter.
After Christmas, an opening for a Saturday counter assistant within the branch came up and I was offered the role. During my years with Boots I progressed to become a trained dispenser. I then moved to a busy independent pharmacy, completed the pharmacy technician course, and then undertook the accuracy checking technician course. I enjoyed working in community pharmacy and loved the fast-paced environment, getting to know the patients, and providing support to the pharmacist.
The next step in my pharmacy career was a senior pharmacy technician role within NHS Forth Valley. The role in purchasing, storage, distribution, and I.T. was completely different to anything I had done previously and involved staff management, robotics and the management and distribution of stock. During this time I was given the opportunity to complete an HNC in Pharmaceutical Services Development and Management. This course allowed me to develop my management skills including communication, problem solving, and self management.
I moved to Aberdeen in October 2016 for my current role as Pharmaceutical Services Improvement and Development Manager. This was a newly developed role within the Pharmacy and Medicines Directorate and I was extremely excited that my previous pharmacy experience and qualifications met the entry criteria for the role.
The role involves the development, implementation, and delivery of pharmaceutical services across NHS Grampian, promoting quality improvement and supporting other development across the health board.
In the past year, I have had the pleasure of meeting a number of the staff working within the community pharmacies in Grampian and seeing the excellent pharmaceutical care that they deliver to patients. I have also had the opportunity to work with many different health professionals to help develop and improve different elements of pharmacy services such as smoking cessation, minor ailments, and influenza immunisation.
My favourite part of my role is supporting community pharmacies in any way that I can, being involved in the development of services available within community pharmacies and meeting pharmacy staff to find out how they are delivering services within their pharmacy.
I love my job and really enjoy the different elements of the role. I look forward to continuing to develop community pharmacy service and working with pharmacy teams and colleagues to ensure that patient centred care is always at the heart of our pharmacy services.
My personal ambition as a pharmacy technician is to never stop learning and push my career as far as it will allow me to take it. Who knows maybe the Director of Pharmacy or Chief Pharmaceutical Officer?
Stacey Anderson is a Pharmaceutical Service Improvement and Development Manager working in NHS Grampian.