AWARD WINNERS: Jeremy O'Donell (Amcal & Guardian State manager), Grant and Jennifer Oswald and Mary Lance (Business Development Manager - Guardian).
AWARD WINNERS: Jeremy O'Donell (Amcal & Guardian State manager), Grant and Jennifer Oswald and Mary Lance (Business Development Manager - Guardian). Troy Swindells-Grose

Clermont Pharmacy in running for Aussie honours

WINNING a statewide award for his ongoing contribution to the community was just part of the reward for Grant Oswald, owner of the Clermont Pharmacy, who is committed to the health and well-being of his customers.

Mr Oswald - whose pharmacy was presented with the Guardian Community Pharmacy of the Year 2018, award in October - said the awards were judged by a board from Amcal and Guardian pharmacies and he had been invited to the Gold Coast in March next year to compete for the national award.

With a staff of four full-time and three part-time employees, Mr Oswald said he was "very excited” with the win.

"The award recognises the important role that pharmacies play within their community - many times it is not just about the services we offer in our shop but what the whole team do outside of working hours as well.”

He said his job and the work of the pharmacy was "a very pivotal role in the community and a very trusted one too”.

"Everyone normally trusts their pharmacists. I love rural pharmacy because we get to know our customers better than they do in the city.

"If I give someone advice here, I'm going to see them again over the next week and I'll know whether it's worked or not,” he said.

"I think sometimes the community is like an extended part of your family and we do go through the lows and the highs with our customers.

"If they are diagnosed with a disease, we feel it too and we're there with them through that journey.”

He said it was an honour to receive the award and to be recognised for his work to make a difference in the community.

Passionate about men's health, Mr Oswald has also been applauded for the annual Jugs and Jocks night he runs, which raises awareness of men's mental health.

"It's to get blokes out there talking about mental health, relationships, anything really,” he said.

"Blokes are notoriously bad at starting the conversations that matter, so this is really something to highlight that blokes can be blokes, but to encourage them to have a conversation if they're struggling.”

Mr Oswald said many regional areas did not have the services and professional help available in cities, "so, it's my responsibility to plug as many gaps as we can”.

The pharmacy's retail manager Amy McGarity was also an awards finalist for Retail Manager of the Year for Guardian Pharmacies.

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