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TAFE offers first ever pharmacy course

For the first time ever, those who want to study pharmacy will not have to leave Deniliquin to do so.

Deniliquin TAFE has launched a community pharmacy course in the region, to be offered by virtual classroom at the Connected Learning Centre on the Deniliquin campus.

The Certificate III in Community Pharmacy will arm locals with the practical skills and work experience to gain employment as pharmacy assistants.

The community pharmacy sector employs more than 41,000 people nationwide and generates close to $20 billion annually.

TAFE NSW community pharmacy teacher Catie Kenyon, who previously managed a large pharmacy for more than a decade, said demand was strong for pharmacy assistants in the area.

She said the COVID-19 pandemic had underscored the critical role pharmacists played in managing and treating the community’s health.

“Pharmacies have been administering vaccines and RAT tests during COVID and it’s really heightened the trust the community has in its pharmacy assistants,” Ms Kenyon said.

“Having qualified, quality staff is essential to ensure pharmacies continue to take the strain off the health system and a TAFE NSW qualification will give you the practical skills to thrive in the industry.

“It’s such a rewarding job; you get to know your customers on a personal level and help make a difference in their health and wellbeing.”

Ms Kenyon said the Certificate III in Community Pharmacy was the minimum requirement expected by most employers.

Units offered in the course include infection control procedures, vitamins and minerals, pain relief, and baby and infant care.

“The key for us is that when a customer walks in, our graduates have the knowledge of what to give them and take some of the work off the pharmacist,” Ms Kenyon said.