Bundaberg pharmacist Tarin Dobbie has been crowned Queensland Priceline Pharmacist of the Year and is now vying to win the national award, to be announced in Singapore.
Each year, Priceline recognises pharmacists from each state who have gone above their normal scope of practice to help the local community.
Tarin's dedication to her patients' wellbeing, empathy in communication, approachability and pursuit of excellent customer service helped her win the coveted state award.
“This was truly unexpected so I'm still a little shocked, but extremely grateful for the recognition,” she said.
“Although I am the award recipient, it is a reflection of our entire team's hard work and dedication to our customers.
“I think the majority of pharmacists have a caring nature, it's what draws us to this profession in the first place.
“It's very rewarding to know you have helped improve a patient's health in some way or even had a positive impact on their day.
“Community pharmacy can be a very busy, stressful job at times, full of multi-tasking and constant interruptions, but if I can find a few moments in the madness to connect with my customers, it makes my day so much better.”
Tarin, who is also co-owner of Priceline Pharmacy Bundaberg, went up against more than 100 other pharmacies in Queensland and northern New South Wales.
She is now one of five finalists in the running to win the national award that will be announced in Singapore in June.
“I hadn't worked for a large banner group before owning Priceline Pharmacy Bundaberg, so this level of recognition is definitely a new experience for me,” Tarin said.
“My entire career has been in community pharmacy.
“While studying my pharmacy degree at UQ in Brisbane, I started working at a small, but busy owner-operated pharmacy in Caboolture in the Moreton Bay region, close to where my family lived.
“I continued working there as an intern for one year after graduation, followed by nine years as a registered pharmacist.
“In 2015, my good friends Adam and Cassie Harradine, owners of Moore Park Beach Pharmacy, finally convinced me to pursue ownership as the next step in my career.
“It took quite a while for us to find the right pharmacy, so in the interim I worked as a locum in various locations.
“Working as a locum was a fantastic change of pace and provided a great variety of experience to prepare me for ownership.”
Tarin said, before being recognised with the Queensland Priceline Pharmacist of the Year award, a highlight in her career was renovating and relocating Priceline Bundaberg to the old Westpac building.
“It was a mammoth undertaking that we were crazy enough to start in the middle of the COVID pandemic, but it all came together with a lot of hard work, late nights and fantastic teamwork,” she said.
“We are so proud of our store and haven't looked back since the move.”
To be eligible to be named Queensland Priceline Pharmacist of the Year a pharmacist must demonstrate a range of achievements, engagement and delivery of pharmacist-led health services, and leadership of the dispensary team.
“I believe what has stood out to the judges is how my team and I have gone above and beyond to support our community throughout the COVID-19 pandemic,” Tarin said.
“In particular, through our commitment to providing the most comprehensive vaccination service we could – to both adults and children, across most days of the week.
“We are one of only a few health providers in the Bundaberg Region who offered COVID vaccinations for children, and I believe we are now the only ones still offering this service.
“This led to us being recognised as administering the most vaccinations of any Priceline Pharmacy in Queensland in November 2021, which was a big surprise for a smaller regional store.”
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