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  • PSGH-GAR educates pharmacy students on career paths
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    Published: 24th April 2017

    The Greater Accra Regional branch of the Pharmaceutical Society of Ghana (PSGH-GAR) on March 16 this year, organized a mentorship forum in Accra for pharmacy students as part of the activities to mark this year's University of Ghana Pharmacy Students Association week celebration.

    Practicing pharmacists whose fields of practice span across hospital pharmacy, community pharmacy, entrepreneurial pharmacy, commercial pharmacy, pharmacovigilance pharmacy and public health, interacted and shared their working experiences with the students.

    The PSGH-GAR regional chairman, Pharm. Isaac Adupong, an organizational productivity optimization executive with extensive experience in pharmaceutical sales, who happened to be the speaker, provided a broad overview information about the various fields of practice whilst homing in on pharmacovigilance and commercial pharmacy. He highlighted the significance of pharmacovigilance in the medication use process as means of monitoring the safety of medications on the market. He stressed that concerns for medicines should not only be focused on the establishment of its efficacy, but also be concerned with its safe use in both humans and animals. He also underscored the importance of commercial pharmacy as being the bedrock of pharmacy practice which bridges the gap between the manufacturing industry and access to medication. He maintained that due to the growing levels of civilization, pharmaceutical industries work with high level of ethics in order to promote medication safety and efficacy, thus, making pharmacovigilance a core element in commercial pharmacy.

    Pharm. Czarina Ribeiro, CEO of Mokat Chemists and a patron of the UGPSA also interacted with the students by sharing lessons from her decades of practice as a community pharmacist. She echoed the role of the pharmacist at the community level as a primary healthcare provider wielding the potential to uplift the image of the profession. She revealed that most pharmacists at the tail end of their careers end up as community pharmacists.

    Other speakers who threw more light on community pharmacy practice were Pharm. Isaac Awuku Gyekye and Pharm Victoria Tolulope Oliyide. Pharm Victoria Tolulope Oliyide  said it was important for pharmacists to empathize with patients and provide immediate solutions to their health problems. She also advised the students to engage in voluntary internships in order to develop themselves.

    Touching on hospital pharmacy practice, Pharm. Asomaniwaa Owusu-Ansah, formally of the Sweden Ghana Medical Centre, highlighted teamwork as a key factor when it comes to hospital pharmacy practice. She added on that hospital pharmacy practice involved a personalized form of therapy and requires that patients build trust in their pharmacists.

    Pharm. Frank Boateng, a former president of the PSGH explained the role of regulatory bodies in pharmacy practice and healthcare delivery. He said that whilst the Pharmacy Council was a statutory body responsible for regulation of the practice of pharmacy, the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) on the other hand regulates the marketing of medicines in addition to  assessing the safety and efficacy of medicines. 

    The mentorship forum is a continuous project planned and instituted two years ago by the PSGH-GAR to provide access to information concerning career paths in pharmacy to pharmacy students in Ghana.