Alice Vanderpol from Moama Village Pharmacy has taken out the title of Pharmacy Assistant of the Year
The Pharmacy Guild of Australia/ Maxigesic Pharmacy Assistant of the Year Award (PATY) took place at a gala ’90s-themed dinner at Sea World Resort on the Gold Coast on Friday night.
Ms Vanderpol said it had been an “absolute privilege” to spend the last few days with the other finalists: Anita Jones from the Northern Territory; Amy Peatling from Tasmania; Phillipa Maika from Victoria; Rebecca Porter from the ACT; Sally Alfieri from WA; Julie Gagliardi from Queensland; and Laura McKinlay from South Australia.
“This journey has brought us so close together, and it’s the calibre of these girls standing up here: they’re winners as well,” Ms Vanderpol said in accepting her award.
She encouraged pharmacy assistants to nominate themselves and each other for future PATY awards.
“You don’t know who you are until you step out of where you are,” she said.
She takes home more than $10,000 in cash, prizes and rewards.
Pharmacy Guild Queensland branch vice president Kos Sclavos said that this year the judges decided to take the unusual step of awarding a runner-up for the national award.
Anita Jones from Amcal+ Palmerston Health Centre Pharmacy in the Northern Territory was named the first PATY runner-up in the competition’s history, taking away a $500 prize.
“She’s been involved in a lot of media, she’s sort of stepped up to the plate in the pharmacy to do a variety of tasks, and as she said today, unless you try, you won’t know what you can achieve,” said Mr Sclavos, praising Ms Jones’ presentation to the conference earlier in the day.
Calvin Mackenzie from AFT Pharmaceuticals, said the company put a lot of store by Australia’s pharmacy assistants.
“We believe very strongly that they are the front line,” he said, saying the bar for the competition is raised every year.
Danielle Offer from Wizard Pharmacy Kelmscott Plaza was awarded the Glucojel Superstar award.
“This award recognises outstanding customer service in community pharmacy, and is awarded to the pharmacy assistant who goes above and beyond for their customers,” said Mr Sclavos.