The UK’s first pharmacy to offer undergraduate students hands-on experience with patients has received an education award.
Health Education North Central and East London (HE NCEL) handed a Quality Award for collaboration and partnership in health education to Green Light Pharmacy in Euston, London on Wednesday (December 3) for its “innovative and cutting edge” training of undergraduates in collaboration with University College London (UCL).
As part of the initiative, UCL students were “immersed” in the daily workings of the pharmacy, including advising patients on which drugs to take for minor ailments, supporting patients with long-term conditions and supervising methadone consumption, the university said.
Green Light education and training lead Simon Harris told C+D that the pharmacy’s basement had been turned into an education centre in 2012 to allow students to practise their communication and counselling skills. Students did not traditionally have a lot of contact with patients until their pre-reg year, which Mr Harris had found to be a problem when overseeing trainee pharmacists in the past, he said.
“We didn’t know for sure [the project] was going to work, but it’s turned out to be incredibly successful and the feedback from the students has been amazing,” he told C+D. It was “exciting” to be recognised for “years of hard work” by winning the award, he added.
UCL school of pharmacy director Duncan Craig labelled the project a “game changer” for educating his students, which showed what could be achieved when “practitioners and education providers worked together for a common goal".
HE NCEL said its award was designed to recognise “where education and training has brought people together to collaborate across organisational boundaries”. Green Light’s “unique” training had resulted in a “new approach to student learning”, it added.