07:00: I'm still fast asleep, despite the best attempts of my alarm clock!
08:00: I'm up, showered, dressed – I've even had my Weetabix – and I'm ready to hit the road. Today I've got a reasonable journey ahead of me, from my home in Manchester to a GP practice in Sheffield, travelling across one of the region's more scenic routes.
From day to day, my journey to work can vary from 10 minutes to more than an hour. On average, I travel less than 40 minutes, which is a considerably shorter commute than the journeys of most locum pharmacists I know.
09:00: I've just arrived at the GP practice I will be auditing today. After collecting the paperwork from the project lead organising the review, I head into the surgery to meet the practice manager.
Once inside, I'm made to feel right at home, and there's a nice consultation room with all the tools I need – a computer, printer and a nice cup of tea. I get to work identifying patients from the practice population who are suitable for clinical review, and who may be in need of a clinical intervention in relation to their bone health.
10:00: I've run all the relevant searches on the computer system and got my patient lists. It's quite a large practice so there's a lot to keep me busy. I pop back in to see the practice manager and arrange to meet the lead GP to discuss how best to manage the patients I have identified.
11:00: It's time for my meeting with the practice's lead GP, who is very keen to discuss how I can help in terms of improving patient care within bone health and osteoporosis. After a good discussion, I have a clear understanding of how the GP wants me to proceed and I plan the rest of my day. With another cup of tea, I head back to my computer to begin the clinical reviewing process.
12:00: I work my way through the various patient groups I identified earlier, reviewing medication and making interventions where necessary.
13:00: Time for a quick lunch. I'm able to be flexible and take an hour's lunch if I feel like it, or just grab a quick bite and then get through the day's tasks sooner. As it's a nice day and there's a lovely-looking deli next door, I decide to nip out for a bite to eat in the sunshine.
14:00: Finishing off my patient reviews now.
15:00: All the clinical work is done, so I just need to write up a report and leave all the paperwork and audit trails for the practice manager. I also have a quick catch-up with a colleague, who's getting along nicely with some CCG work in the North West.
ICS encourages cross-communication between all peers, colleagues and healthcare professionals, which will be even easier to do once I work out how to use this iPhone they've given me properly.
16:00: The audit report is complete but, before I go, I have to send out letters to some of the patients I have reviewed. This is the least exciting part of my day, but I've come to find stuffing and stamping envelopes strangely therapeutic.
17:00: I talk the practice manager through what I've achieved for the practice today, leave her the audit notes and protocol and say a friendly farewell before hitting the road again.
On the way back, there's time to call my line manager – using a hands-free kit, of course – and update him on my week so far. We discuss a training day, which will be on a therapy area that I've had little experience in so far.
18:00: I arrive home after a good day's work – I always feel a sense of satisfaction, and that I've made a positive and real difference to patient care in the primary sector. I have a quick look at my diary for the rest of the week and, most importantly, tomorrow, when I'm delivering a key review in a new project area for me.
As is always the case in such circumstances, I'll be accompanied by my line manager to give me any necessary guidance. Now I just have to decide what to do with myself for the rest of the day.
If you would like more information on career opportunities with ICS please contact us for more information.