What are your proudest NHS moments?

31 May 2018

The NPA is looking for your stories ahead of the 70th anniversary of the NHS on July 5

In particular we want to hear about your proudest moment, in relation to your work in and around the NHS.

The stories will be compiled into an e-document and shared with the press. By way of examples, it could be where you have:

  • Made an intervention that made a huge difference to a single patient.
  • Introduced a system or process that made a small difference to a group of people.
  • Introduced a system or process that saved the NHS money.
  • Been the first pharmacist to do a particular thing that is now more common.
  • Opened a pharmacy in a deprived area and created jobs and seen patient outcomes improve.

To share your story email the NPA’s PR manager, Chris Fay, at c.fay@npa.co.uk. Support is available to help shape your story. Meanwhile, here are a selection of some of the stories that are coming in.

Pantea Shahiri, a pre-registration pharmacist at Manor Pharmacy, Wheathampstead, Hertfordshire.

“My proudest moment so far is when we referred a very poorly baby who it turned out had leukaemia. Baby and mum came into the pharmacy one Wednesday afternoon, when I was just a few months into my pre-reg year.

Mum was very distressed and even before I spoke to her I could see baby was a pale and yellowish colour. When I took a closer look I could see he was struggling to breathe and was very cold to the touch. The poor might was trying to hide from the light and was very agitated and stiff. I was concerned it might be sepsis or meningitis. The supervising pharmacist shared my concerns and after we discovered mum had no transport we called an ambulance.

About 45 minutes later the ambulance still hadn’t arrived, but dad had, so we encouraged them to drive themselves. We checked in with Luton and Dunstable Hospital later and were told the baby was stable and on an antibiotic IV. We heard about the leukaemia diagnosis later still but we’re told the prognosis is good. The grandparents even popped in a few days later to thank us.

Who knows what would have happened if we weren’t there to help that baby that day, I’m just glad we were. Getting positive feedback is great but being able to support a severely ill baby and his family is its own reward and why we do the job.”

Bernadette Brown, owner of Cadham Pharmacy Health Centre, in Glenrothes, Fife.

“Becoming a pharmacy health centre, with nurses and pharmacists working together, was an incredible moment for me and the team. Automation is enabling us to think and act differently to provide more care and services to our community, because it has freed-up the time of our pharmacists and team.

We have a nurse and three pharmacists trained to offer assessments and I can prescribe on my NHS prescription pad to support patients’ health needs. The public are the key to our success and they are choosing to make use of our services, choosing pharmacy as their first port of call, which saves GP, out of hours and A&E appointments.

We are so proud to be part of our NHS, working as an integrated part of primary care, supporting people to gain confidence to manage their health when they are acutely unwell, have long term conditions or in public health education.

For example, we are supporting people who have poor asthma control and helping them to gain confidence and give them the tools to take back control of asthma, their health and their lives.

It is a privilege and honour to have gained new skills and that the public trust us to care for them when they need it most with easier access to NHS care.

We are also thankful to NHS Fife who in this celebration year continue to support us with our triage, asthma and COPD clinics.”

Noel Wicks, NPA board member and managing director or Right Medicine Pharmacy in Falkirk, Scotland.

“We are no strangers to bad weather in Scotland but when the Beast from the East struck, it was on another level. The response from my team and many other independent pharmacies was just fantastic though.

In quite a few villages the doctors weren’t able to get in, so we were the only recourse available. That was when having all the tools that the Scottish contract gives us, at our disposal, was really helpful.

We had people who couldn’t get their repeat prescriptions, so we went into our urgent supply systems and helped them out. We had vulnerable patients in their homes and people who were really unwell asking us for help, and we had calls from GPs working from home to deliver vital medication.

I’ll always remember this one young lady who had really young children with her at home and was in severe pain. The doctor prescribed her some strong painkillers, a controlled drug, and we got the car close enough so we could walk the last 500 meters through the blizzard, to get to her door. Both the doctor and the patient were snowed in their homes but we were out there, on the ground, and we made that delivery within about half-an-hour.”