The Pharmacy Guild of Australia, Queensland branch has won an accolade for its work in mental health and commitment to improving the quality of life of Queenslanders living with mental illness.
The outstanding contribution of individuals, groups and organisations across the state was recognised at the 2016 Queensland Mental Health Week Achievement Awards Luncheon and Presentation Ceremony.
The branch won the Not-For-Profit Organisation Award (Small to Medium 1-100 staff) and also received the Open Minds Earle Duus Memorial Award which is the overarching award given to one of the finalists of the eight award categories.
The Guild worked closely with Partners in Recovery (PIR) organisations to provide mental health education and training to staff at over 100 pharmacies located in the Brisbane North, Brisbane South, Gold Coast and West Moreton Oxley regions.
The aims of the projects were to improve collaborative care between pharmacy staff and mental health support providers; and improve the knowledge, skills and attitude of pharmacy staff to better support people with a mental illness.
Dr Hidy Chan, Professional Practice Pharmacist at the Queensland Branch accepted the award on behalf of the branch.
“These awards confirm the importance of community pharmacies in the delivery of healthcare services and support for people living with mental illness,” Dr Chan said.
“Clinically trained pharmacists are available at convenient hours with no appointment necessary and due to this unique accessibility, can provide vital support in the areas of suicide prevention and mental health first aid,” Dr Chan said.
“They also highlight the importance of collaboration amongst the different social and healthcare sectors to ensure the seamless delivery of care and services for this vulnerable population.”
This year, a record number of nominations were received from an incredible group of mental health heroes, which were judged by five prominent senior professionals, including a previous Achievement Award winner. 22 individuals and organisations were in the running for category honours.