Pharmacist of the Year announced at TerryWhite Chemmart Masterclass 2024

Ruthanne Jaja of TerryWhite Chemmart Macquarie Street was named Pharmacist of the Year 2024 at a gala event held as part of the brands’ Masterclass education event on the Gold Coast last night.

Over 600 TerryWhite Chemmart Pharmacists and pharmacy professionals from across Australia celebrated Ruthanne’s accomplishment, along with Wai Mun Loh from TWC Mildura who received the Innovative Community Care Award and Jake Bennetts from TWC Ainslie Compounding who was announced as the Intern Pharmacist of the Year.

Ruthanne was nominated by colleagues throughout the network for her ongoing commitment to driving Pharmacist practice forward. At her pharmacy on Macquarie Street in the CBD of Sydney, Ruthanne and her team are known as a destination not only for health concerns, but for care. The pharmacy, under Ruthanne’s clinical and patient focused leadership, has gone from strength to strength through maximising the service offering for the community.

“My passion and drive, as a Pharmacist first and foremost but also as a business owner, is to care about the community you serve, and in turn this will spur your success. I am humbled to receive this award and I am proud of the team that I work with day in and day out to bring our dedication to care to life,” Ms Jaja said upon receiving her award.

Ruthanne and the team at TerryWhite Chemmart Macquarie Street have consistently demonstrated an unwavering commitment to excellence in service delivery. They have strived to practice to their full scope, embracing every clinical and professional advancement with enthusiasm and dedication. Their commitment extends beyond merely providing essential services to the community; they deliver these services with an exceptional level of professionalism and integrity.

“Ruthanne is the epitome of a leader working at the forefront of delivering better health outcomes to her community and elevating awareness of best practices within our profession. She embraces opportunities to drive change as a pharmacy owner Network Partner and Pharmacist,” says TerryWhite Chemmart Executive General Manager, Nick Munroe.

Other highlights of the TerryWhite Chemmart Pharmacist of the Year Awards – 2024
Wai Mun Loh of TerryWhite Chemmart Mildura (Deakin Avenue) in Victoria was awarded the Innovative Community Care Award for her ongoing commitment to improving the health and wellbeing of her regional community.

  • Jake Bennetts of TerryWhite Chemmart Ainslie in the ACT was awarded Intern Pharmacist of the Year for his commitment to embracing his role as a healthcare leader.

Wai Mun Loh of TerryWhite Chemmart Mildura (Deakin Ave)
Wai Mun and her team in Mildura, located over 550km from Melbourne, have created a destination for those in the community most at risk, and have committed to improving health outcomes amongst some of the most vulnerable populations both in the pharmacy and out in the community. Wai Mun and the team have a regular program that ensures patients have contact with their local Pharmacist, with off-site vaccination clinics for First Nations people, and a delivery service to locals who are too unwell to visit the pharmacy.

“We’ve found that by increasing access to vaccination appointments, and now all services available under the Victorian Health pilot programs, we’ve been able to assist with care for our community in a deeper way and reduce the burden on the broader healthcare system in Mildura,” said Ms Loh.Wai Mun and the team have also shown innovation in their practice by engaging deeply with their local GP clinics, hospitals and other care facilities with an aim to educate on the breadth of service the pharmacy offers, aiming to improve community health outcomes and reduce burden on other practitioners.

An example of this collaboration is TWC Mildura’s enhancement of their Sleep Apnoea Care Clinic by providing local physicians with supplementary information regarding the effects of sleep apnoea on patients and addressing inquiries regarding available therapies. To guarantee that all patients could receive the necessary treatment, Wai Mun contacted local MDAs to offer assistance and funding for the services necessary to treat their sleep apnoea.

“The role of Pharmacists within communities can be as diverse as the people they serve every day and increasingly our patients need us to be an integral part of their broader health care team. Wai Mun does this authentically by bringing practitioners from numerous disciplines together to collaborate and connect so care flows through the community.”, says Chief Pharmacist Brenton Hart.

 

Jake Bennetts of TerryWhite Chemmart Ainslie in the ACT
The future of pharmacy relies on nurturing the next generation of Pharmacists delivering care and this is the celebration of the Intern of the Year at TerryWhite Chemmart. Jake Bennetts of TWC Ainslie Compounding was announced as the award winner for his active learning within the pharmacy and embracing the opportunities with scope of practice and CareClinic health services.

“I wanted to become a Pharmacist to help my community and the opportunities to practice at full scope, as I entered my internship, really expanded what I was able to learn and achieve. Undertaking the delivery of initiatives and the trust from my team has helped raise my confidence and enthusiasm for our profession even more. Our role has always been fundamental in keeping our communities healthy and now we have even more ways to provide services our patients need.”, says Jake Bennetts.

Some of the initiatives Jake was nominated for included building a comprehensive plan to implement the ACT pilot for UTI and OCP resupply and driving the transition of the opiate replacement therapy program to ensure care for vulnerable community members didn’t waiver despite changes that occurred.

Jake has also developed his skills and driven the pharmacy vaccination program, embracing all allowable vaccinations and injections, improving community health outcomes. Jake’s passion for community care has also seen him develop his knowledge and skill and is known by both the team and customers alike as the ‘go-to’ for support on Nicotine cessation and medicinal cannabis.

“The future of pharmacy will be driven by those who embrace the opportunities being presented today and moving forward. The trials and delivering on full scope of practice has showcased to students entering the industry as well as seasoned Pharmacists a new service model for supporting our communities. Jake is the epitome of a progressive health care clinician and someone who shows what you can achieve when you embrace opportunities.”, says Chief Pharmacist Brenton Hart.

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