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Where Are You Now?

Ahmad Atchia

Ahmad Dawjee Atchia

BSc Pharmacy 1974

Ahmad’s passion for Pharmacy started before completing his Higher School Certificate (equivalent to Advanced level) in Mauritius while regularly collecting medications for his aging grandfather. Since graduating from the School of Pharmacy, Ahmad has worked in the profession he loves.  

His career as a pharmacist spans 40 years in the North East of England. He was superintendent owner of a pharmacy in Stockton-on-Tees for 20 years and for a shorter period a second pharmacy in Gateshead at the same time. He is currently a locum pharmacist for Phillips Ltd.

“I do locum cover regularly with additional holiday cover for the managers at the three local pharmacies in Trimdon, County Durham. I am accredited to do Anticoagulant Clinic (Warfarin), Medicines Use Review, New Medicines Service and Emergency Oral Hormonal Contraception.”

Ahmad, originally from Mauritius, is a member of the Faculty of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (MFRS1) and is mentor of Pharmacy Students and Qualified Pharmacists applying for membership to the Faculty of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society.

Ahmad describes his biggest challenge was aiming to qualify as Independent Prescriber.

Talking about what attracted him to the University of Sunderland, he explained: “My application to Sunderland School of Pharmacy in 1969 was successful. At the same time, I won a government scholarship to study Electronics in Karachi, Pakistan.

“Due to parental pressure, I spent nine months in Karachi before hitchhiking to Europe. Arriving in France I re-applied to the then Sunderland Polytechnic when again I was accepted.

“As a foreign student I had plenty of support from all the staff and classmates. I thoroughly enjoyed this experience.”

Ahmad still remembers fondly Fred Oliver, Head of Pharmacy; Dr Betty Jackson, Head of Department of Pharmacognosy; and his course tutor, David Mills. All provided advice and guidance, he said.

He added: “I also recall all the facilities being close to the School of Pharmacy, which was located then in the Galen Building, especially the library.”

Ahmad’s advice to current students and recent graduates on how to get a foot on the career ladder is to focus on their own development.

He said: “Develop yourself in a speciality of your interest, be patient, be willing to make sacrifices and keep up-to-date with all the additional services required in the job. Express your potential to your employers.”

Ahmad concluded: “My future plans are to continue with all my voluntary work while preparing for retirement in my native country Mauritius.”

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