Collaboration is key to being a community health destination, writes Jacqui Hagidimitriou
In the age of fast-paced change in pharmacy, those who innovate will continue to adapt to the new terrain.
Consequently, our aim at TerryWhite Chemmart Samford is to always be ahead of the curve and one of the ways we have succeeded in this is with our collaboration with local health professionals.
We have always fostered a strong sense of community, with such events as the annual Samford Health Expo becoming an ever-increasing presence amongst our clientele and also local health businesses, who realise the advantage of forging an alliance with our pharmacy. These inter-specialty collaborations are not just a yearly event however, and we are constantly seeking to find ways to form mutual connections amongst doctors and allied health in our area.
In September, I headed up an information evening in the pharmacy for the public on the latest in pain management, at which we also had a local GP and physiotherapist speaking from their perspectives.
The attendees were able to learn about the OTC changes to codeine while also covering topics such as addiction, personalised medicine, manual therapies and chronic pain management. The GP had recently joined the local surgery and was impressed with our new clinic setting and service offering.
A collaboration like this brings benefit to the public in the way of unique service provision, as well as strengthening the ties between local health professionals.
Our continued presence in the community allows other health professionals to be aware of what we have to offer and more and more we are seeing more referrals to us for unique services that we provide, such as my role as a natural medicines pharmacist.
My next collaboration will be with a local counsellor to put together a seminar and program for women experiencing menopausal symptoms, as this is an area that responds well to lifestyle, diet and holistic treatment.
We have state of the art clinic rooms which we utilise for our consultations, increasing the professional image we present to the community.
While it can be daunting to begin something that people don’t expect to find in a pharmacy, what we have experienced at Samford is the richness that comes from being the local health destination with a wide range of services available to the public: a hub where customers know they will receive good advice and be connected to a range of options for their healthcare.
We are looking forward to continuing to develop our collaborative health offering in the local community in 2018.
Jacqui Hagidimitriou is a pharmacist at the award-winning Terry White Chemmart Samford and winner of the Bioceuticals Integrative Medicine Award.