Victorian pharmacists recognised

Robyn Saunders, a pharmacist who has worked tirelessly in aged care and mentored hundreds of young pharmacists, won the Victorian Pharmacist Medal at the 2018 Victorian Pharmacists’ Dinner.


Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) Victorian President Benjamin Marchant presented Ms Saunders with the medal during the ceremony at Cossar Hall last week.


Ms Saunders spent 15 years of her early career in hospital pharmacy and single-handedly established the drug information centre at Heidelberg Repatriation Hospital. She later moved across to the private hospital sector and implemented ward pharmacy services at Epworth Hospital.


In 2002, she partnered with fellow pharmacist Jenny Gowan to establish MediCom Medication Services, providing clinical services to residential care facilities and partners in medication education.


She also teamed up with software developers to create QUMulus, a cloud-based tool for consultant pharmacists providing medication guides, clinical auditing tools and drug information.


As a practitioner researcher, she has been involved in pharmacy practice research projects in Quality Use of Medicines (QUM) and medication management.


In presenting the medal, Mr Marchant said, “Robyn is a strong advocate for evidence-based practice and has personally mentored hundreds of pharmacists.


“She has provided countless education sessions through PSA and other professional organisations and government agencies, supporting them via best practice for the sole purpose of better health outcomes through quality use of medicine. She is no doubt a role model for us all.”


Also recognised at the dinner were pharmacists Angela Lawrence, Dimitra Tsucalas and Christine Bellamy for their significant contributions in rural hospital pharmacy, community pharmacy and primary healthcare network respectively. PSA past Victorian President David Newgreen received his Lifetime Service Award to celebrate his recent retirement from the Victorian Pharmacy  Authority.


PSA National President Dr Shane Jackson also joined Mr Marchant in recognising PSA Life Members Ann Howe, Tom Shen, Warren Ritchie, Russell McPhee, Joe Sztar and David Meller, as well as Student of the Year Rhiannon Froude from Monash University and RMIT Gold Medalist Sarah Hassan.


PSA is grateful for the ongoing support of this annual celebration by PDL, North West MelbournePHN, Robert James Lawyers and Monash University.


Image 1 caption (L to R): Janelle Devereus (NWMPHN), John Guy (PDL), Robyn Saunders, The Hon Mary Wooldridge (Shadow Health Minister) and Ben Marchant (PSA Victorian President)


Image 2 caption: PSA Victorian State Manager Bill Suen with Robyn Saunders