Chris Garland

Senior Principal Pharmaceutical Officer, Department of Health 

My first weekend job in a pharmacy was 18 years ago! Today, I advise on the development and implementation of pharmacy and medicines policy, in support of the Minister for Health and Department of Health.

I graduated in 2008 and after pre-reg with Boots I worked in London as a STEP Pharmacist and later as a Cardiology Pharmacist at Royal Brompton Hospital. In 2014, I moved home to Belfast and from Belfast Trust joined DoH in 2017.

Pharmacists really are the medicines experts and we have a unique set of skills and knowledge that play a vital role in helping people to get the best  from their medicines. The value of pharmacy has been recognised by politicians and by senior leaders across the healthcare system. Demand in Northern Ireland has never been higher, with the development of new clinical roles right across the profession in recent years. Northern Ireland’s small size makes it easy to innovate and to get involved in making a real difference to the profession and people’s lives.

As someone who made the decision to uproot and return home to Northern Ireland, I’m very happy to speak to anyone who might have questions about a similar move and why you won’t regret it.