“I’m glad to work in a small town, because when you’re in a small town it feels like you have more time to spend with your patients,” then third-year student Fraser Ball explains, as we sit in the back office at Enderby Health and Wellness Centre in Enderby, B.C.
“It’s not quite as fast-paced and busy, so you can know some of your patients on a first-name basis and develop a relationship with them. You can do the same thing in Vancouver, but I feel like it’s easier here because you see the same patients every week or couple of weeks and so you can get to know them quite well.”
Enderby Health and Wellness Centre pharmacist and and practice educator Allyson Lemke agrees.
“It’s not just the dispensing, it’s the following up and caring for these people and knowing their lifestyle,” she says.
“My first suggestion (for students) is – ‘take your time and get to know the patients.’ Don’t just get to know their meds, get to know them as a person. You’re not treating the prescription, you’re treating the patient. Sit down and talk to them. You have the knowledge and you’ll be able to get to apply your knowledge once you get to know the patient.”
Ball has made the most of the B.C. Interior’s long summer days.
“After work it’s nice and sunny out. I’ll do a lot of biking or going out for a run or hiking,” he says.
“There’s lots of lakes around here too if you wanted to do some fly fishing or go in a kayak.”
One-quarter of the UBC Entry-to-Practice Doctor of Pharmacy program is experientially-based and the Faculty works to place students with practice educators at over 500 sites across the province. Practice educators provide guidance and mentorship to students, along with a safe space to develop their skills.