Staff thank hospital pharmacists, our ‘walking textbooks’

Westmead Hospital Pharmacy Department celebrates World Pharmacists Day.

They are the medication experts ensuring patients get the right dose of the right drug and avoid dangerous combinations.

September 25 is World Pharmacists Day and Westmead Hospital staff are taking the opportunity to thank their colleagues for all they do.

Intensive care unit (ICU) nurse Sylvia Fobi put it best when she said pharmacists are like walking textbooks.

“If you don’t know something, they will be able to give advice. This is especially important in the ICU setting with the way we need to administer drugs urgently,” Sylvia said.

“Pharmacists flag and correct errors, and make us aware of how to give certain drugs.”

Pharmacists are available around the hospital to give advice on correct dosage and administration, as well as protect against potentially dangerous mistakes and side effects.

They also help staff stay up to date with the latest medications in the constantly-changing world of pharmacology.

Pharmacists are an integral part of a hospital, especially in the emergency department, cardiology unit, renal unit, ICU and geriatric wards where patients are often on a complex array of multiple medications.

WSLHD chief medical information officer Naren Gunja works with pharmacists every day through his roles in emergency medicine, toxicology and electronic medication management.

“Their dedication to patient safety and reducing medication errors in the hospital is unparalleled,” Naren said.

“I wish all pharmacists, both the clinical and electronic kind, a happy World Pharmacists Day to celebrate their achievements.”