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Heroes in the community – pharmacy locum spots an MI, and saves patient’s life

Pradeep Goel


THE following anecdote shows how community pharmacists can make difference in people’s’ lives at the most important time.

A FEW weeks ago I was working in a community pharmacy on a Saturday as a locum. An elderly lady came in asking something for heartburn. After usual WWHAM questions, I asked if she had any other symptoms. She casually mentioned that she also had a bit of pain in the jaw, which she said might be due to cold.

She wasn’t a patient from the pharmacy, so I couldn’t check her medication history. I told the lady to go to A&E urgently, as it could be more sinister. She wasn’t sure. But I strongly advised her to go to A&E. Shift finished, I got busy with my daily job as GP practice pharmacist and forgot all about the incident.

Several weeks later, I received a call from the manager of that pharmacy saying that she wanted to speak to me. As usual in such cases, I thought there must be some problem, error or complaint from my shift. But, the manager said that patient who I’d strongly suggested to go to A&E had come back into the pharmacy and was asking for my phone number; she wanted to say thank you to me personally for saving her life. That heartburn was actually an MI.

I have to say, I felt pleased with myself, and delighted that I was able to help this lady.

About Pradeep Goel
I have more than 23 years experience in pharmaceutical field. I have got almost 16 years experience as a manager in different settings in Pharmacy/Pharmaceutical Industry abroad and more than 7 years experience in Pharmacy in UK.

I did my Bachelors in Pharmacy in India in 1993, my conversion course (OSPAP) from Aston University in 2010-11. I did my pre-reg with an independent in Redditch, and qualified in August 2012 as a pharmacist in the UK. After qualifying I worked with the same independent as a pharmacist manager at a 100 hour store.

I worked with Boots pharmacy as relief manager in various branches in Cheshire and Shropshire area before becoming a full-time locum.

To enhance my clinical skills, I did postgraduate certificate in prescribing studies at Wolverhampton University in 2016. After qualifying as an IP, I started working as a clinical pharmacist with a GP practice in Stoke-on-Trent. I have never worked before in primary care, so this was quite a learning experience.

In my present role, I am doing clinics on long-term conditions management, Repeat prescription and queries related to repeat prescription, handling discharge letters from hospital and reconciliation of medicines, so there is no gap in patient care when a patient is transferred from secondary to primary care.

I also do medication reviews and ensure safe prescribing for patients by checking drug interactions, correct dosage and by ensuring blood/other tests are regularly monitored.

To further enhance my clinical skills, I am doing masters in advance clinical practice at Wolverhampton University.

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