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Alliance Healthcare and Alphega Pharmacy Announce Winner of the BPSA Business and Enterprise Competition
Abeer Aamir, a first year student currently studying Pharmacy at the University of Brighton, is the winner of the BPSA’s Business and Enterprise competition, sponsored by Alliance Healthcare and Alphega Pharmacy.
Abeer receives the prize of a £500 gift voucher after she successfully pitched a presentation highlighting how Alphega Pharmacy is the key to the future development of Independent Community Pharmacy. She also came up with not one, but three new ideas that could enhance the current Alphega Pharmacy B2C app.
The BPSA (British Pharmaceutical Students' Association) is an organisation that works to enhance the experience of its members by inspiring them to invest in their development, seize opportunities and become advocates for the profession. This competition is one example of that. It allows students to be innovative and explore the business aspect of pharmacy, whilst building confidence and winning prizes. The BPSA teams up with sponsors, such as Alliance Healthcare to deliver such fantastic opportunities.
The final was held virtually on Tuesday 30 March, 2021, with three out of ten students who made it through to the final round competing via Zoom, due to current Covid-19 restrictions.
Abeer Aamir, winner of this year's event, says: "I am incredibly appreciative for the opportunity I was given to compete in the Business and Enterprise competition. The competition allowed me to look at pharmacy practice in a new light and specifically focus on how we as pharmacists must adapt to the ever-changing healthcare landscape, especially so in this new online based era. As we move into a post-COVID world, I believe it is crucial for all pharmacy students to take a look at how the practice will be shifting in the next few years with the rise of digital care, and learn how to adjust without compromising patient-focused care.
“Competing in this competition also gave me the chance to be creative by creating a cohesive and interesting presentation marketing the Alphega app, as well as coming up with innovative ideas to further the development of the app and the future development of independent community pharmacies on the spot during the judge questioning round. I was also able to gain a deeper understanding about different business standards of practice, as well as appreciate the innovative concepts and designs that must be made by independent pharmacy owners to remain competitive against larger chain pharmacies. Thank you again to the BPSA, Alphega Pharmacy, and Alliance Healthcare for organizing this competition!”
The three finalists performed incredibly well and a great rapport was built with the judging panel. The panel consisted of Mike Smith, Non-executive advisor at Alliance Healthcare, Sue Dobson, Alphega Pharmacy Business Mentor, Vinay Patel, Alphega Pharmacy Services and Contract Pharmacist, plus Rob Darracott, Editor at P3pharmacy magazine who joined as a special guest judge. The event was coordinated by Trisha Dogra, a pre-registration pharmacist who graduated from Keele University and is the Competitions Coordinator of the BPSA Executive Team, plus Karen Lam and Lorna Kimberley, both from the Marketing and Communications Team at Alliance Healthcare.
Mike Smith, Non-executive advisor Alliance Healthcare UK, says: "The entries were again of the highest quality this year. The three shortlisted finalists gave excellent presentations with some really innovative and radical ideas. They demonstrated a clear understanding of the benefits of Alphega Pharmacy membership and how this will be key to the future development of independent pharmacy. These young students are the future of our profession and I have no doubt it will be continue to flourish in such safe hands. I am so proud of them all. They were all winners for me and the judging was very close.”
Rob Darracott, Editor at P3pharmacy magazine also added: “It’s never easy presenting at the best of times, but all the finalists did a great job, not only in identifying the benefits of Alphega to independent community pharmacy, but in presenting their ideas virtually too. It’s especially nice hearing innovative ideas and suggestions from those at the start of their careers in the profession, including one at the very start, our impressive winner and first year pharmacy student, Abeer.”
For over a decade, Alliance Healthcare has supported the BPSA and looks forward to seeing the positive difference our young pharmacists make in this challenging world.
Abeer Aamir, BPSA, Business and Enterprise Winner