Rita is SHPA’s 5000th member

rita skipper
Rita Skipper.

The Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Australia has announced it has surpassed 5,000 members

This makes it Australia’s fastest growing pharmacy organisation, it says, and a rejuvenated leadership is preparing to release a new strategy and vision for Australian pharmacy in the coming months.

In a special video commemorating her unique position as SHPA’s 5000th member, Rita Skipper, Rotational Pharmacist at Flinders Medical Centre in South Australia, explains how her journey to membership was an unorthodox one.

“My interest was always in hospitals, but I started my career as a community pharmacist as I also had a passion for customers and clients and the communication that comes from healthcare in that setting,” Ms Skipper says.

“After a while I really started to miss some of the research and education aspects, so I began the move back toward hospital pharmacy and I rejoined SHPA earlier this year.”

Ms Skipper, who begins in a new role as clinical pharmacist at HPS Pharmacies next week, says she is looking forward to driving her career forward through her SHPA membership.

“I plan to make use of all the resources, join Specialty Practice streams and get to some of the clinically-focused face-to-face CPD seminars,” she says.

“I’m amazed at how much SHPA has grown in terms of services provided since I was first a member in 2011, and I’m looking forward to learning from peers and leaders in the field.”

SHPA Chief Executive Kristin Michaels says the milestone comes in another big year for SHPA, which is preparing to release new strategic directions and a new vision document.

“After our members voted overwhelmingly for a modernised constitution last year, and we welcomed three new expert Board Directors in May, we are ready to build on our comprehensive suite of programs and initiatives, and draw more pharmacists and technicians into our nationwide advocacy to drive the broader profession forward,” Ms Michaels says.

“Our vision for pharmacy practitioner development will articulate the necessary models of care, supported by optimal learning pathways, to support and elevate the capacity and expertise of Australia’s existing and emerging pool of pharmacy talent to meet Australia’s future, demographically-driven healthcare challenges.

“With more advanced pharmacists comes an advanced pharmacy sector, and better health outcomes for all Australians.”

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