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Pharmacist Charles Odiase talks to PIP about opportunities for pharmacists in diabetes care

Charles Odiase

Where did you work on your first day as a pharmacist and when was that?


My first day as a pharmacist was very exciting and I remember it well. I took on my first community pharmacy locum job for a Cohens high street chain pharmacy straight after graduating from Bradford University in 2010. One of the highlights of my first days as a pharmacist was getting an unplanned visit from a GPhC inspector, and giving out methadone as the responsible pharmacist.


Why did you become a pharmacist?


Becoming a pharmacist was more of a choice made on elimination. I knew I didn’t want to be a doctor as we had one in the family already and it wasn’t to my taste. I got my first university admission in geology as I followed in the footsteps of my elder brother, however, I took a year out and it was in that year I fell in love with pharmacy. I love chemistry and finding a lifelong career in pharmacy where I could help individuals improve their health, keep close to chemistry, improve global public health and earn a good wage was irresistible.


Where do you currently work?


Presently I work as an Advanced Clinical Practitioner and Prescribing Pharmacist at the Reading Walk-In Centre and GP surgery. As part of my job role, I perform diabetes and prescribing lead duties there.


What roles have you undertaken as a pharmacist?


I have been privileged to have undertaken multiple roles. Some include being an undergraduate student mentor, postgraduate diploma tutor, rotational pharmacist, lead specialist pharmacist, locum community pharmacists, band 6 line manager, Diabetes UK Clinical Champion, Diabetes UK professional conference organising committee member, Diabetes UK primary course chair, Berkshire West diabetes clinical network member, consultancy advisory roles as diabetes specialist pharmacist, urgent and routine advanced clinical practitioner, prescribing lead, and diabetes clinical lead for GP surgery. I  recently secured a new job in a leadership position within a GP federation, to lead on community diabetes care delivery and GP Practice clinical pharmacist development. The contract has not been signed yet but all verbal agreements have been made.


Which role did you find most challenging and why?


If I had to choose I would say I found my rotational pharmacist role the most challenging but at the same time rewarding. Being a junior pharmacist isn’t always fun as there is so much responsibility despite still having much learning to achieve simultaneously. But such challenges can either break you or build your character. I would like to think the latter was the case for me.


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