Profile of a Community Pharmacist

The ADAM Study has 50 Lloyds Pharmacies working as trial pharmacies across the country.  The pharmacists and their teams support the study by dispensing acamprosate in our trial bottles with MEMS Caps attached, and by keeping a record of the prescription each participant has, throughout their time on the Juliana Musa_Community Pharmaciststudy.  They are a vital part of the trial phase, seeing our participants on a monthly basis and therefore acting as a key point of contact.  All pharmacists and many of their team members have attended several training sessions so far to keep them up to date on the study procedures and requirements.

Juliana Musa is a pharmacist working at the Kimberworth Pharmacy in Rotherham, and she kindly agreed to a telephone interview with one of our researchers to help us understand how to become a pharmacist, and what the role entails.

Name: Juliana Musa               
Pharmacy: Kimberworth, Rotherham


Why did you decide to become a pharmacist?

My passion to become a pharmacist was driven by the desire to help patients and people. I have always been interested in pharmacy because, it is different from medicine which most people study back home. Understanding the various medications and how they would benefit patients is important; as I am motivated towards helping patients, and making their lives better.


Why a community pharmacist not industry or hospital?   

As a community pharmacist, you are in contact with the patient and this generates a certain closeness with them, thus producing positive results. With this close relationship established with the patient, they rely on you for medication or advice, which doesn’t happen in the same way in hospitals or the other arms of pharmacy.  It is all about being patient-centred for me.


What is your background, and how did you train to become a pharmacist?

I studied pharmacy in Nigeria, and graduated in 2000.  After practising as a community pharmacist in Nigeria, I came to the UK in 2007 and decided to take the conversion courses I needed to practise here.  I attended Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen, studying a one year programme with the final year pharmacy students, on completion; I did a pre-registration placement and exams which enable me to practise in the UK.  It has been an amazing transition for me, and a really good experience.


How long have you practised as a pharmacist?  Was that in community or hospital elsewhere?

I’ve been practising as a pharmacist for about 17 years.


How long have you worked for Lloyds?

This is my 6th year of working for Lloyds.


How long have you worked at the Kimberworth branch in Rotherham?

I’ve worked at the Kimberworth branch for 5 years. I did one year in a different Lloyds branch and before that and a few months at other branches, until I decided to come here. I’ve mainly worked for Lloyds but I have done a few hours working in other community pharmacies, to see their work pattern.


What is the best part of your job, and why?

The clinical aspect is the best part for me, as patients come in to enquire about particular medications and I have positive answers for them.  Also, when they come in for consultation about some kind of illness or ailment, and the medication I have recommended works for them and they come back to say “thank you pharmacist, this worked “.  Having consultations with patients is where I find my joy in practise so far.


What is the most challenging part of your job, and why?

For me the challenging bit is we do encounter language barriers from time to time. However facilities have been put in place by the company to assist this. We have also built good relationships with the community who help us with this


How have you found being involved in the ADAM study and the training you received?

I’m enthusiastic of the study and I’m definitely interested. I’m just working with the information you’ve provided us.  It is what helps us to get new services into the business, and if it is a trial that will benefit patients and the business, then, I am certainly open to it.  I am personally interested to see practical results.


What else could pharmacists and the pharmacy team do to support patients and families who are experiencing problems with alcohol now?

I believe counselling will go a long way towards addressing this problem. You need the family members to be present as well and to identify the root cause of the problem, duration of this patient current condition. Communication with patient is vital, as you can learn more, understanding patients to what may have triggered illness, so I feel we should talk and treat patients with respect.



How do you see the role of community pharmacists in the future, with regards to working with patients who may be experiencing problems with alcohol?     

Community pharmacists have a crucial role in the future as it will change and become more focused on patients; where pharmacists can become prescribing pharmacists, which has already started in some areas.  As a prescribing pharmacist, you can specialise in specific disease conditions or ailments.  Thus, you could have someone who specialises in alcohol treatment and runs clinics. I think it is the way forward for pharmacies, which is really good, because you are freeing up doctor’s time, and you have that good rapport with the patient and you can solve the problems immediately without needing the GP.


Do they have any research experience? Would you be interested to do more research in future, what sort of research and why?

I’ve never been fascinated by academics or research although if it is patient centred I am open to it.  I will welcome such an opportunity as long as it is patient centred.




ADAM Newsletter- August 2016

Summer Newsletter 

Trial Launch Date 19 July 2016

We are thrilled to announce the launch of the ADAM Study, recruitment has begun across the five study sites, and we look forward to updating you with progress in the Autumn newsletter.  Thanks to everyone involved with getting to this point, we appreciate the support from you all.  Thanks also to the clinical teams for their patience while we wait to launch the study.

Congratulations to the ADAM Trial Manager Dr Kim Donoghue on the birth of her baby boy in early June

We’d like to give a warm welcome to Dr Sadie Boniface who is in post to cover Kim’s maternity leave – welcome to the team Sadie!

Building links with CNWL addiction specialist services

To continue the further development of our telephone intervention pharmacists we conducted  a training and networking event  with the Central and North West London (CNWL) Addiction Specialist Pharmacists. This session helped build links and relationships between our trial pharmacists and addiction specialist pharmacists. This meeting provided a unique learning opportunity for the telephone pharmacists to gain insight and understanding of the range of support given by pharmacists in drug and alcohol service. Many thanks to Fahreen Hasham, Noor Assadi and Soyar Sherkat who shared their time and wisdom with us.

Training and development 

Visit the link below for the latest available MOOCs:

Information on Good Clinical Practice Training is available here:

NIHR New Media Competition

The ADAM team entered the NIHR New Media Competition, and created a 2 minute video about the study and Patient and Public Involvement in developing the trial.  Unfortunately we were not successful in being shortlisted, but you can read the story of creating the video in the ADAM Study Blog.

You can view the video here:

Special congratulations to Professor Sir John Strang who received a Knighthood in the Queen’s birthday honors this year for services to medicine, addiction and public health.

Professor Strang is Head of the Addictions Department in the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience (IoPPN) and is also Leader of the Addictions Clinical Academic Group of King’s Health Partners Academic Health Science Centre.


Wishing everyone a lovely Summer! 



ADAM Newsletter- March 2016

Easter Newsletter

Introduction to Lloyds Pharmacy Clinical Contact Centre Pharmacists  

The ADAM team would like to introduce the telephone support pharmacists who will deliver the advice, information and support to patients in the intervention groups. Pictured below, the team, based in the clinical contact centre (CCC) consists of Sukhvinder Sandhu, CCC Manager, Ikhlaq Hussain and Radu Juverdeanu; CCC Pharmacists.

Sukhvinder: “I joined the team in January and work closely with KCL to support the clinical trial; I believe this a valuable opportunity to highlight how community pharmacists can make a significant contribution to clinical trials. I am enthusiastic to utilise this platform to make an active impact to the ADAM study.”

Radu: “I started working with the CCC in November 2015 as a healthcare professional. The ADAM study is an excellent chance to observe the impact of community pharmacists on adherence and medicine optimisation. I’m excited and proud to be part of this extraordinary project.”

Ikhlaq: “The words excited and privileged only begin to describe how I feel about this unique opportunity!! For me, healthcare research is of paramount importance to help influence change, prove or improve healthcare practices; in turn contributing to patient’s quality of life and stimulating socioeconomic development.” 

CCC team


Training and development

Sign-up now for the

Improving Healthcare through Clinical Research MOOC

Find out how medical treatments are discovered, tested and evaluated, to improve healthcare for all, on this free online course.

Community Pharmacy Training Update

Our researchers have been busy visiting all forty-seven community pharmacies across the UK. For many of the pharmacies this is the first time they are taking part in research. We are pleased with the enthusiasm and dedication shown by the pharmacy teams. In the Yorkshire & Humber site our researcher Rachel has been travelling far and wide to deliver the training across the patch. Pictured below is a successful event she hosted for Grimsby and Immingham pharmacies.

All London, Birmingham, Southampton and Yorkshire & Humber visits are now complete.


Trial Update

We are excited to be working with over twenty-five alcohol services across the five sites. We expect to start recruiting in April 2016!


Wishing everyone a Happy Easter!

Congratulations to all our community pharmacy teams that have completed the training! We are pleased to have you all on the ADAM team!

LPs training completed





ADAM Newsletter- December 2015

Trial Launch

The trial will go live in January 2016!


ADAM study

Adam team

The ADAM study is a national trial exploring how service users could be supported to take the medication acamprosate by pharmacists. There is good evidence for the effectiveness of acamprosate for preventing relapse to dependent drinking. Despite this, adherence to this medication is low and therefore the positive benefit that could be gained from taking it is not reached in all patients. The unique aspect of this study is that it will involve pharmacists who will be trained to support patients to take acamprosate as prescribed. This study is led by Professor Colin Drummond, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience; King’s College London, is funded by The National Institute for Health Research and is listed as a National Portfolio study.

Training and development

· · ·

Register your interest now for the Addictions MOOC

Understanding Drugs and Addiction massive open online course (MOOC) starts on the 7th March 2016. This free course explores how addictions develop, looking at the environmental, genetic and individual risks, best practice in treatment and policy, future directions in addiction science. Over 34,000 people have enrolled in this course over the past two years.   Register your interest now here!




Telephone Support Pharmacist’s Training Complete


Christmas Update


In November we delivered the two-day training for the telephone support pharmacists on the medication management (MM) intervention and contingency management (CM). MM is a brief discussion that involves receiving information, advice and support about alcohol and acamprosate over the phone. CM is a voucher incentive the participants receive for engaging in the telephone intervention.

Over the two days the pharmacists role-played different scenarios with actors and practiced advanced communication and interpersonal skills. The training also encouraged reflective practice and an empathetic approach to delivering the intervention.  The pharmacists have been trained to support the patients in developing strategies to manage their medication, including understanding how acamprosate works, adhering to the dosage, managing side-effects and education about their medication and alcohol dependence.
Although intensive the feedback from the training has been extremely positive. The ADAM team will continue to support and advise the telephone support pharmacists through the project.

Sites Update

The research team has been busy visiting the community pharmacies that are taking part across London and Birmingham this term. All London community pharmacy visits are complete! The visits have been very positive with many pharmacists expressing an interest in alcohol dependency research. Visits for Hull and Southampton will start in the New Year.

We are pleased to welcome our telephone support pharmacists Ikhlaq Hussain and Radu Juverdeanu to the ADAM team!