Pharmacist recognised for ‘distinguished service’

Pharmacy Guild NSW branch president David Heffernan presenting the award to Veronica Nou

Refugee advocate Veronica Nou has been honoured with an award from the Pharmacy Guild of Australia

The Pharmacy Guild National Council has awarded Sydney pharmacist Veronica Nou with a Distinguished Service Certificate, following a nomination from the NSW branch.

Ms Nou is the owner of two Western Sydney pharmacies: Colyton Centre Pharmacy in Colyton and Morris Care Pharmacy in Oxley Park. She is also a founding members of a group called Mums 4 Refugees, which works to feed, clothe and care for refugee families who have newly arrived in Australia and conducts political campaigning and advocacy.

This Guild award was given for “outstanding contribution to pharmacy and the community”, with particular recognition to Ms Nou’s service to her Western Sydney community and her “tireless work” in assisting refugee families who have recently arrived in Australia, said Guild executive director Suzanne Greenwood.

“Your commitment toward providing asylum seekers with much needed support including initiating free ongoing medication review services and after school care for children is indicative of the passion and dedication our profession so proudly embraces and contributes to our society,” Ms Greenwood told Ms Nou.

The recognition took Ms Nou – who didn’t realise she was in the running for an award – by surprise.

“What a lovely and unexpected pleasure,” she told AJP. “This award is an important acknowledgement by the Pharmacy Guild of the extra hardships that some communities face every day, even before the pandemic hit.

“For people who have to figure out if they can afford their medication and pay the rent, a good pharmacist can make a huge difference to their quality of life,” said Ms Nou.

“So I’d like to thank the Pharmacy Guild for their continued support and encouragement of our work with families doing it tough, and I sincerely hope to see other targeted programs, and other pharmacists, doing what they can to look after the people who trust us to do so every single day.”

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