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Home  »   Member Voice   »   Hospital pharmacy: the value of being a PDA Hospital Rep

Hospital pharmacy: the value of being a PDA Hospital Rep

Andrew Jukes, hospital pharmacist, and PDA Hospital Rep believes many pharmacists enjoy working in the hospital environment. However, here Andrew discusses the issues hospital pharmacists are reporting and the value being a PDA Hospital Rep can provide.

Tue 21st March 2023 The PDA

Over the years I have worked in over forty different hospital organisations, spanning both the NHS and the private sector. Overall, my experience has been a positive one, but on occasion issues have arisen that have the potential to be detrimental to a positive work environment. This can impact on individuals or entire teams negatively and significantly.

The issues that hospital pharmacists raise are very similar to each other, but the magnitude and circumstances can vary.

The table below lists some problems that are reported:

Table 1. Examples of adverse issues that pharmacists report in the hospital pharmacy sector

A lot of these issues often remain unresolved over a period of time. Have you ever wondered why that is? Also, why is it the case that certain issues are common in many hospital pharmacy services?

Currently, the PDA Union does not have national recognition in the NHS and private sector hospital operators. Pharmacists themselves are busy people trying to serve the needs of patients, so it is not always easy to be the one that challenges a difficult circumstance individually. In addition, the solution to a problem may not be obvious or there are barriers such as a difficult manager that may need to be approached.

This is where the true value of a PDA Rep comes to light. It is possible to obtain recognition of the PDA Union in individual NHS trusts, and the rep becomes the ‘eyes and ears’ on the ground. They can communicate with colleagues and recognise issues that need addressing in their own workplace.

The role of a PDA Hospital Rep

Constructive communication with management can often be effective and reduce the burden of problems that may arise. There is a two-way line of communication that serves as a link between the PDA Rep and the PDA Union. This means that reps are equipped with the tools and support they need for their role, whilst enabling the union to have an ‘overview’ of issues more nationally across the sector and can therefore act as may be appropriate.

If you become a PDA Hospital Rep you will be contributing to your workplace environment and helping colleagues, whilst reducing the impact of any issues that present themselves. It is a role that adds value and you will achieve self-development whilst challenging issues that otherwise may go unresolved.

The table below summarises the key reasons to become a PDA Hospital Rep:

Table 2. The key reasons to become a PDA Hospital Rep

The hospital pharmacy environment needs PDA Reps to drive improvement and help nurture the professional work environment. The issues we all face cannot just be done from afar. This is a real opportunity to help make a tangible impact in your workplace, with full support to do so, in a rewarding role that can be done alongside your existing commitments. This is a chance to be essential in the future of the hospital pharmacy working environment.

Become a PDA Hospital Rep here.

By Andrew Jukes, hospital pharmacist, and PDA Hospital Rep


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The Pharmacists' Defence Association is a company limited by guarantee. Registered in England; Company No 4746656.

The Pharmacists' Defence Association is an appointed representative in respect of insurance mediation activities only of
The Pharmacy Insurance Agency Limited which is registered in England and Wales under company number 2591975
and is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (Register No 307063)

The PDA Union is recognised by the Certification Officer as an independent trade union.

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