Amardeep Singh – Lead Pharmacist for HIV
LEADING THE CHARGE in the fight against HIV and other sexually transmitted infections, Amardeep Singh is the Lead Pharmacist for HIV at Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals Trust, a role which sees him work as part of a small team helping patients manage the condition.
Although the treatment of patients has improved dramatically over years, there is still more to do, and Amardeep is just the man to do it. Alongside his day job, Amardeep (31) from West Bromwich helps young pharmacists start their career in the NHS as a tutor of pre-registration pharmacists.
He said: “I wanted to become a pharmacist after doing work experience at the Birmingham Midland Eye Centre in 1999. I knew I wanted to do something clinical with my career.”
After completing his Pharmacy degree at De Montfort University in Leicester, Amardeep spent a year in working in High Wycombe, and two years in Derby before returning to the hospital of his birth, Sandwell Hospital, as a rotational pharmacist, before snatching the chance of a lifetime to become the Trust’s first HIV lead pharmacist.
Amardeep said: “I knew I wanted to do the job eight years ago, after attending a seminar in Oxford and listening to their HIV pharmacist speak about their role. There was nothing like this when I came here, so when the opportunity came up to bring the Trust up to national standards with this new role, I was very enthusiastic about it, read up and went on visits to nearby clinics and was then given the role.”
The patients have been benefitting from the HIV team since, with the team showing that they give good quality care. Amardeep commented: “I love my job. I like to see patients going from being very seriously ill to seeing an improvement in their health and resuming a good standard of life, which is the reality of most patients with HIV.
“We deal with patients who are sometimes socially marginalised, as sometimes HIV has a lot of stigma attached to it. My values are that I want to provide care for all, especially those who are most at need.”
His next challenge is to set up an adherence clinic for patients who are not getting the right clinical outcomes. This will help by using motivational interviewing to get to the bottom of the issues that are affecting their progress.
Cricket fan, Amardeep combines his love of the sport with his passion for his work as HIV specialist with the international charity, ‘Cricket Without Boundaries’. The charity aims to challenge the perception of HIV in Africa using cricket coaching. Amardeep has been to Kenya and Rwanda in recent years supporting the work of the charity.
Outside of his HIV work, Amardeep enjoys kundalini yoga, and will be visiting a yoga festival in New Mexico, USA this year. He said: “I do yoga with a fantastic group of people and it has helped me physically, mentally and socially.”
A keen Warwickshire cricket fan, Amardeep hopes to complete a level one coaching qualification in the near future.