Former Holbeach and Spalding chemist talks about how the job has changed

Some of the books by Rex Merchant.
Some of the books by Rex Merchant.
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Just as the chemist’s job has changed since Rex Merchant was learning the ropes as an apprentice in the 1950s, the role is still altering.

Rex, who was born in Queen’s Road in Spalding and lived in Albion Street until he was 18, says: “You have to keep up to date in any profession and anything to do with medicine is constantly altering.

“Pharmacy is altering now in a big way. Chemists now are doing flu injections, blood pressure checks, checking people’s medication, and are less and less involved in dispensing. They are really becoming doctors’ assistants.

“When I started out a lot of it was the skill in preparing the stuff and all of that has gone now and it’s just a matter of counting the tablets and checking it’s legal and you are not poisoning somebody and the doctor has got it right.”