Archive for the 'Pharmacy' Category

Introducing interns to the world of pharmacy

Pharmacists who successfully completed their internships at Mopani Pharmacy. Front: Marissa Glendenhuijs, Mignon Joubert and Charl Weber. Middle: Grace Bryson, DK Fayindlala
(current intern) and Karlien van Niekerk. Back: Sarah Gibbs, Caroussel Weber and Geoff Shen (current intern).

Mopani Pharmacy is the only community pharmacy in the Lowveld that accommodates pharmacy interns on their learnership programs.

The South African Pharmacy Council requires that pharmacy students enroll for a yearlong practical training period following completion of a four years full time study.  This practical training year is of extreme importance for the pharmacy graduate as it is an opportunity for the pharmacist intern to gain practical experience and knowledge in the practice setting. Successful completion of the internship leads to the awarding of a B Pharm degree.

Mopani has a structured tutorship program with five of their pharmacists registered as tutors, ensuring that interns receive individual attention. Furthermore Mopani focuses on readying all interns to complete the July Intern Examinations as well as completion of their portfolio’s by August of the intern year. Through the pharmacy’s fast track program, Mopani ensures that interns are practicing in the full scope of pharmacy as soon as possible.

“Mopani offers a unique learning experience to the interns in the sense that they get to experience the way an independent pharmacy is being run,” says Jaco Venter, Mopani’s head pharmacist, “We are also passionate about pharmacy and keen to share this passion with our interns. We strive to show them that pharmacy is more than just a job – it’s a calling.” Sarah Gibbs, who did her internship at Mopani in 2011, concurs: “Interning at Mopani provided a solid base to practicing pharmacy – including all aspects right from a medical side, to stock management, to customer service. It has also taught me a high standard of diligence, efficiency and compassion in the work place.”

The focus on teamwork with the interns being surrounded by a team of experts on a daily basis is another contributing factor of the program’s success. Mignon Joubert, a 2003 intern, says: “From the first year I have worked as a student an effort was made to teach me what a pharmacist should be. With Jaco and the rest of my team as my tutors, I have gained a lot of knowledge and confidence to face the years after my internship. The team assisted me and helped me from the first day. I am thankful for what they have done for me.”

Since 2002, Mopani has trained sixteen interns, all who’ve successfully completed their internship year and the majority now working in the Lowveld. “Doing my internship at Mopani was the best possible beginning to my career. I’ve learned all the aspects of being a pharmacist and also to be passionate about my patients,” says Caroussel Weber, a 2008 intern.  Grace Bryson, who interned at Mopani in 2011, adds: “Mopani is a very busy pharmacy and consequently I was exposed to a lot of medical conditions. It makes such a difference to be able to encounter these conditions in real life instead of studying them from a text book. I learnt so much more about the management and treatment of these conditions and most importantly the effect they have on people’s lives.”

In addition to the wealth of expertise and experience shared with the interns, Mopani also offers an attractive remuneration package, including furnished accommodation.

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