THE fledgling pharmacy faculty at Sydney’s University of Technology last week honoured David Dixon, owner of Goldfields Fullife Pharmacy in Gympie, Queensland, as the winner of the UTS:Pharmacy AstraZeneca Australian Innovative Pharmacist of the Year award. The new annual award was created “to recognise individuals and teams who embrace current challenges with intellectual rigour and curiosity to create solutions for the industry, the profession and the community,” according to UTS:Pharmacy. Courtesy of AstraZeneca, the prize is a coveted medal – plus $5000 to spend on professional development, and with the support of UTS Dixon will also present a lecture on his innovative work at a major Australian conference. The judges hailed Dixon’s Sleep Management innovation as a robust business model that any pharmacy could adopt. The Sleep Management service acts as a ‘one-stop-shop’ that identifies, engages and then encourages patients to take control of their condition and take proactive steps to maximise their health. The innovation has seen a staggering $250,000 revenue increase at Dixon’s pharmacy in its first year of operation. At the awards five other finalists were also highly commended for their innovative work: Cathey Reid, ceo of APHS Packaging; Grant McGill of Kingsley Village Pharmacy; Amanda Bryce of Gerald Burns Pharmacy Bicton; Kirrily Chambers of Mount Barker Chemmart; and Advantage Pharmacy Group. “Innovation has always been a cornerstone of pharmacy,” said the chair of the UTS National Academic Advisory Committee, Warwick Plunkett. “As the profession goes through a time of unprecedented change, it’s important to recognise those who are leading the way,” he added. Dixon is pictured above centre accepting the award from Peter Booth, Senior Deputy Vice Chancellor of UTS (left) and Mark Fladrich, Managing Director ANZ for AstraZeneca.