For Christine Maligec, it’s all about service. Whether it’s her professional career or through volunteering, she’s always been in a service-oriented role. So, when a recent open call went out for positions on one of Alberta’s health-related councils and boards, she put her name forward.
“I was hoping to extend my interest in service beyond my professional comfort zone and looked at regulated boards with the province,” said Christine. “I thought I could bring the experience and knowledge I had from working in risk management in the health space into a health discipline.”
That’s exactly what she’ll be able to do. On May 15, Christine received a signed Order in Council from the Lieutenant Governor and Premier of Alberta that she had been appointed to the Council of the Alberta College of Pharmacists.
“I was a bit surprised,” she said after receiving an email from Alberta Health that included the order. “It was a signed order from Premier Notley. I had never received one of those. I thought, ‘Is that really her signature?’ It was kind of neat and surreal. It was an honour to be selected.”
Alberta Health nominated Christine after screening a pool of finalists for the appointment. Christine feels it’s important that self-regulated professions like pharmacists and pharmacy technicians include public members on their councils to bring different perspectives to the table.
“Having the patient experience is really important to service delivery,” said Christine, once again boiling things down to service. “It brings us back to why we’re here, in any profession or industry. If the services don’t suit the needs of the end customer or change the life of someone in need, it’s probably not the best service.”
Christine has first-hand experience with the benefits of quality pharmacy care. Her mother recently suffered a stroke and has depended on support from her pharmacist.
“I want to bring that empathy and understanding from not only a patient’s perspective, but also all the supports that go into patient care,” she said. “There’s a risk of any group to only consider the view from one side of the fence, but not necessarily the other. If there’s something I can help to do to provide another perspective, I’m honoured to do it.”
Christine has over 13 years of experience in risk management, the last five directly in health care. Her experience will allow her to recognize opportunities and threats to pharmacy practice in Alberta.
“My responsibilities are to represent the citizens of Alberta in the self-governance of the practice of pharmacy in Alberta,” said Christine. “As a member of Council, I’ll help develop and enforce regulations, standards of practice, code of ethics, and bylaws to help govern the members in a manner that protects and serves the public interest.”
Christine is looking forward to meeting her fellow Council members in person and learning more about ACP.
“I’m looking forward to understanding how the college works and the perspective it brings to the quality of patient care,” she said. “I’d like to learn more in depth on the profession side to see how pharmacy professionals manage the industry. As a patient, you see how they manage the business of pharmacy, but not necessarily the profession.”