Seek your own route to professional happiness to make a difference

The transcript of the 2019 Fred J Boyd oration by Adj A/Prof Steve Morris has been published this week in the Journal of Pharmacy Practice and Research (JPPR), flagship journal of the Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Australia (SHPA).

Recipient of the prestigious Fred J Boyd Award for 2019, CEO of NPS MedicineWise Adj A/Prof Steve Morris reflected in his oration on his career and on leadership.

“Taking the route to professional happiness will mean you will probably have more impact on consumers and patients, and be more professionally satisfied yourself,” he said.

Mr Morris told of his eclectic route to happiness from his time as a community pharmacist in the UK, through his experiences working in a street clinic in Kolkata, India, to his time in Australia working as South Australia’s Chief Pharmacist and now CEO at NPS MedicineWise.

Medicine safety is a new National Health Priority in Australia and a focus for NPS MedicineWise, and in his oration Mr Morris referred to the misuse and inappropriate use of pharmaceutical opioids and antipsychotics as key medicine safety issues.

“[These issues] should prompt health professionals to ask ‘what can we do differently as a system, and what can we do as individuals? How can we challenge the system to deliver different outcomes and to make sure, from a medicines safety perspective, that ‘it doesn’t happen again to somebody else’?,” he said.

Ending the oration, Mr Morris had three reflections on leadership:

  • Why? Never stop asking the ‘why’ question.
  • Vision with action. In any organisation you work in, you must marry vision and action. Have a vision and translate it into action, whatever role you are in.
  • Legacy – build other leaders. Leadership is about building other leaders. “Always leave the jersey in a better place,” said Mr Morris.

Read the full JPPR article (subscription required) at


Media enquiries

Matthew Harris, NPS MedicineWise Communications & PR adviser: (02) 8217 9229, 0419 618 365 or [email protected]

Independent, evidence-based and not-for-profit, NPS MedicineWise enables better decisions about medicines, medical tests and other health technologies. We receive funding from the Australian Government Department of Health.