Keele joins forces with Well pharmacy to support its students

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Janice Perkins and Nigel Ratcliffe
Posted on 27 April 2017

Keele University has  announced a long-term partnership with the UK’s largest independent pharmacy chain, Well, to further enhance learning and professional development opportunities for those studying at its School of Pharmacy.

Earlier this month, Janice Perkins, Pharmacy Superintendent at Well, was awarded the title of Visiting Professor in Community Pharmacy by Professor Nigel Ratcliffe, Head of the School of Pharmacy at Keele, both pictured above. This recognises the outstanding contribution that Janice has made to the industry, particularly her work on patient safety and professional practice.

Professor Ratcliffe said: “We are committed to providing our students with the most relevant, evidence-based training to equip them with the clinical and professional skills and experience they need to be successful pharmacists.

“We are delighted to have the support of Well and the expertise of Janice on-board, which provides that invaluable real-world experience which our students need for career progression.  I’m excited about some of the innovative projects that we are working on together to shape the future of pharmacy education and practice.”

Well has committed to providing placements for Keele University undergraduate students and pre-registration graduates across its 780 pharmacies, and currently boasts a 100 per cent pre-registration pass rate. In addition, the first cohort of Well pharmacists recently started their journey on the new three-year Expert Clinical Practice Programme diploma, which aims to provide graduates with the clinical skills needed for the future direction of the industry.  

The pharmacy chain first collaborated with Keele University in 2015, and opened a Well branch on campus as a teaching pharmacy for undergraduates, alongside a Clinical Consulting Suite within the School of Pharmacy. This is believed to be the first such campus-based pharmacy in the UK, and provides Keele students with a unique learning environment on site.

Commenting on her recent accolade, Janice said: “I’m honoured to be awarded this Professorship from Keele, and I’m looking forward to sharing my experience with both students and university staff as part of this role. Our formal partnership means that we’re able to dedicate additional time and resource to support the learning and development of students as they embark on their careers.

“Nigel and the team share our commitment to excellence in the profession. Together we can prepare students for the future of the industry and the increased responsibility that is now placed on pharmacists and their teams, with the aim of collaborating with the NHS and helping to alleviate pressure to provide the very best care to patients.”

Established in 2005, Keele University’s School of Pharmacy is a centre of excellence, and was recently ranked in the UK Top 10 in The Complete University Guide 2018.The additional support from Well is set to improve teaching standards and learning practices even further.