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Pioneering pharmacy helps spot early signs of dementia in customers

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Written by: Gavin Thompson | Posted 23 March 2016 15:00

Pioneering pharmacy helps spot early signs of dementia in customers

A village pharmacy which has been at the leading edge of the medical profession for years has been recognised for its customer service.

Margaret Hook, of Banwell Village Pharmacy, collected the Customer Service prize at the Bristol and Bath Women in Business Awards.

The awards are held in association with UWE Bristol and the category was sponsored by GWR.

Margaret has been a pharmacist for 36 years and always been a pioneer in the profession.

She was among the first to qualify as independent prescribers of medication as part of the drive to put pharmacies on the frontline of healthcare.

Last year she ran a pilot scheme asking patients questions to gage whether they had difficultly with memory. Those who did were referred to their GP for dementia assessment to improve early diagnosis of the growing condition.

Her team has also run a similar pilot around spotting signs of kidney disease, where early diagnosis could save lives.

Speaking after the awards ceremony at the Bristol City Centre Marriott, she said: “I’m really pleased and very proud of my team because we all provide an amazing service to our community and have done for years.

“My customers when they heard I was nominated all wanted to vote for me and were very cross that they couldn’t vote!”

She added: “I’ve always striven to be someone on the leading edge.

“I love the pharmacy, trying to help people understand the physical nature of their condition as well as the medical and how they can help themselves because so much time is spent by doctors diagnosing, they don’t have the time to spend with patients to explain what it all means.”

Margaret believes pharmacists play a vital role in the medical service.

“If I had qualified as a doctor I might have seen 20 or 30 people a day,” she said, “as a pharmacist I can see way over 100.”

Read more: Find out who all the winners were here.

WIBA logo

The finalists

Kirsty Hassan

Colston’s School, Bristol

Kirsty goes the extra mile to help prospective parents who may not have set foot in an independent school before. She has trained staff and led a refresh of the school identity. She impresses visitors with her courtesy and remembers details about people’s lives. Applicants to the school are up as a result.

Theresa Lane

Grosvenor Casino, Bristol

Theresa’s approach as general manager of the Grosvenor Casino in Anchor Road is customer focused. Mystery shopped feedback is positive and changes to the venue have proved popular. In response to customer demand, it is now the only casino in the group which serves Thatcher’s cider on tap!

Margaret Hook receives her award from sponsor GWR

Pictured: Margaret Hook receives her award from sponsor GWR

Meet the sponsor: GWR

Isambard Kingdom Brunel built the Great Western Railway back in the 1830s – and train travel remains as important today.

His vision revolutionised the West, turning it into a vibrant region with connected communities, open to trade and tourism. It was a vision that made the West great.

Today, along with our partners at Network Rail, we’re lucky enough to be in charge of this railway. Thousands of dedicated staff run our services, keep the railway maintained and help the network grow. We’re still innovating and improving. More than £7.5 billion is being spent to build a Greater West. We’re working with Network Rail to design, engineer and implement changes to the railway.

And we’ll make sure the improvements to track, trains, services and stations will also benefit your communities and local businesses. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to improve our railway and make sure you enjoy your journey, every time you travel with us. We’re electrifying tracks, improving stations and introducing new high-speed trains, with modern technology and high standards of comfort.

We’re providing:

  • extra seats
  • faster journeys
  • more reliable trains
  • free WiFi
  • better parking

This is a huge programme of improvements, and it does mean there are times when trains are disrupted. But we’re working hard to keep your journey uninterrupted – and you can be confident it will all be worth it. After all, we’re following Brunel’s vision.

Together, we’ll build a Greater West.

WIBA sponsors


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