Lisa Dadswell is a new member of Team Macmillan. She is one of the first Boots pharmacists to take up this new role – the Boots Macmillan Information Pharmacist. These pharmacists have received bespoke training, developed by Boots and Macmillan, and will help provide communities with better access to vital cancer information and support being conveniently located on the high street .

Lisa works in Boots in Stratford-upon-Avon, and has been a pharmacist for 17 years.

What made you want to take on this new role?

My father died of lung cancer in March 2012. I’ve gone through it all and so I wanted to help others in any way I can.

Mum and I received help from a Macmillan benefits adviser, and when Dad wanted to go off and travel the world, they helped us with his travel insurance. There were also support groups at the hospital and although Dad wouldn’t have used them, it was good to know there were people there.

 What training did you have to go through?

We do a Macmillan e-learning course. It goes through everything we need to know more about including chemotherapy, radiotherapy and how people may be affected by cancer emotionally. I’ve got an information pack which tells me about all the leaflets and resources available from Macmillan. It helps us to signpost people to extra help if they need it locally.

It has really changed the emotional support side of my work. It’s about being able to listen and know what’s appropriate, whether it’s giving a customer a leaflet or just some reassurance.

 What might you deal with on a typical day at work?

I talk to people affected by cancer most days – either patients or carers.

I think it really helps that I know what they’re going through. I know the chemo unit at Warwick Hospital, as I was there many times with Dad, so I can tell them what it’s like there. I know the staff and the Macmillan Information Nurse, so I can tell them how nice they all are. They often want to check little things, like whether you can take your mobile in.

I can talk them through different options. For example, the other day I helped a lady who was a carer, who didn’t know whether to give medication through a syringe driver.

 What’s the best thing about your job?

I like the variety – you never get the same situation twice. And I like being able to help people who’re going through what I went through.

It’s very scary when you first get diagnosed. You get a lot of information bombarded at you. When you’ve just had your oncologist appointment you may not be able to take it all in.

But when you’re in Boots, it’s on the high street. They know me. I’m Lisa. I’m the pharmacist. They trust me. I don’t have all the answers, but I can tell them where they can find them.

Describe your ideal weekend.

I’d get a lie-in on both Saturday and Sunday, as I normally have to work at weekends, and I have two young boys. On Sunday, I’d have a pyjama day, just chill out and watch DVDs! Then I’d have a nice meal and a glass of wine.

Visit to find your nearest Boots Macmillan Information Pharmacist. Also has a specific cancer health centre which offers information and support to people affected by cancer as well as the latest cancer news.