60 seconds with Alice Gossington: Pharmacy Technician

What is your role here at the PPU and what does it entail?

I am the new permanent Pharmacy Technician for the ward, taking over from Sabita who has been a great help. My role entails supporting the existing teams in ensuring excellent Medicines Management compliance on the ward, completing Drug Histories and Medicines Reconciliation for newly admitted patients, to make sure that we have an accurate understanding of their medications and assist in the ongoing correct prescribing of these throughout their stay on the PPU, as well as discharge. The current pharmacy team have visions for improving the pharmacy service and private patient experience which I will be involved in.

What is a typical day like for you as a Pharmacy Technician?

Like a lot of healthcare professionals, there probably isn't a typical day as such. However, the bulk of work consists of checking for newly admitted patients to speak with, looking into stock management, supporting the pharmacists with any work that they can hand over, completing required paperwork etc. There is often a lot of detective work involved in gathering correct information from various sources, and you never know what ad hoc queries will crop up day to day.

What made you decide to get into pharmaceuticals?

I never had a strong desire for any specific course at university when I turned 18, so I worked for some time in a local community pharmacy whilst I figured out what I really wanted to do. It turned out that I found medicines very interesting, and I enjoyed working closely with the public. I felt that pharmacy was an area that could lead to development whilst working, whilst serving the local communities and helping to improve their understanding of medications.

What goals do you set for yourself when you come into work?

I try to keep a smile on my face and to remain calm and approachable for colleagues and patients alike with any problems or queries they might have. It's nice to think that the patients can leave with a better understanding of their medicines too.

What do you appreciate most about your line of work?

All of the different professions I get to work with both in and outside of the Pharmacy department, as well as the opportunity to empower patients to become experts in their own healthcare in regards to the medications that they take. I also love the diversity of healthcare teams and learning so much about other cultures from one another, it's beautiful.

How did you celebrate yourself on World Pharmacist Day?

Pharmacy Technician Day is Tuesday 17 October this year, and I will definitely be celebrating myself and other Technicians with cake.

Did you know that 78% of Pharmaceutical Technicians are females? How does that make you feel?

I am proud to be a part of such a strong workforce, where women can support one another in developingโ€‚and play such a vital role in contributing to the community of healthcare workers supporting the public.