Sun, 19 May 2024


Certification of pharmacists, support for local pharmaceutical companies top list, as CPAN Stakeholder highlights areas needing urgent govt attention
From: CEOAFRICA REPORTER: Boluwatife Oparinde
Tue, 14 May 2024   ||   Nigeria,

A National Unofficio member of the Clinical Pharmacists Association of Nigeria (CPAN), Dr Obianuju Onwuatuegwu, FPCPHARM, FPSN, SCPAN, has highlighted areas needing urgent government attention to ensure improved and quality health care delivery in Nigeria.

Dr. Onwuatuegwu, who is also a National Unofficial Member of the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN), told CEOAFRICA yesterday in an interview, that the “rising cost of drug therapy due to high inflation resulting from importations of most Pharmaceuticals as well as Drug related morbidities & mortalities, especially seen in areas where pharmacists are lacking or are very few, the Nigerian government needs to ensure that our poorly rated Health Indices are salvaged as Nigeria is currently rated as 187th position out of 191 countries who health indices were rated in a global scale.”

She noted that to ensure health at every Nigerian doorstep, there should be training, retraining and certification of pharmacists, zero tax or tax waiver in importations of raw pharmaceutical materials for local drug production by indigenous drug companies; the need to support local Pharmaceutical Companies to reduce over-dependence on imported finished drugs; need to establish local Quality Assurance Laboratories in all health facilities to ensure quality drugs are dispensed to patients; need to close all open drug markets & illegal & unregistered drug premises.

“Establishment of Local Drug Production outfits in all health facilities to enable local drug manufacturers & extemporaneous compounding e. g. infusion, syrup, suspensions, creams; strengthen DRF & ensure its smooth implementation to avoid decapitation of the seed money; establish Pharmacovigilance centres in all health facilities that will be supervised & superintended by the pharmacists to ensure safe drugs are dispensed & adverse drug reactions are minimised; establish special pharmacy counselling rooms to promote rational drug use & reduce Drug related morbidities & mortalities; renovate, rebuild, equip most public Pharmacies with modern storage facilities to meet up with the global best practices,” she said.

Onwuatuegwu continued that the government should “establish & equip Drug Information & Poison Management Control & management centres in most health facilities to ensure rational drug uses; employ more pharmacists to ensure that rational drug uses are implemented as well as Other pharmaceutical care services are provided; ensure that the services of Consultant Pharmacists are optimally used to ensure specialist services; ensure that pharmacists have unfettered access to patients & their information, especially during ward rounds; ensure Community Pharmacies stock vaccines & are actively involved in National vaccination/Immunisation programmes.”

“Ensure Community Pharmacies are fully integrated in National health care programme as done in other countries as pharmacists are the easily most accessible health care professionals in the communities; integrate Community Pharmacists in NHIA/NHIS programme & ensure their due remunerations to ensure that only registered & qualified Pharmacists dispense drugs to ensure rational drug uses; ensure Pharmacy schools are integrated in the Collegiate in the University system to ensure proper trainings of pharmacists in the making as well as ensure that they have free access to public health institutions in their trainings.

“Ensure that WAPCP be fully assisted in its training of Pharmacy Residents; Establish & equip more pharmacy schools to improve the Pharmacists: Patients ratio; ensure that all Heads of Pharmacies in Public health facilities are integral & permanent members of Top Hospital Management Team to ensure Pharmacy-friendly policies are formulated & implemented as drug is one of the basic pillars in disease management & prevention; Pharmacists are fully & duly represented in all Boards in health facilities as policies for efficient & effective Drug Management can only be guaranteed by pharmacists alone,” she said.

When asked about the 2nd International scientific conference of CPAN, she said “With a profound feeling of gratitude to each and everyone who in one way or the other contributed towards the programme, the 2nd International Scientific Conference of CPAN tagged Eko Akete 2024 held from 22nd to 26th April 2024 at Neca House, Ikeja Lagos, was a massive success in all aspects and ramifications.

“It was well-structured and organized and provided networking opportunities to the participants. The contents were excellent, and the hands-on skill training was the core/icing on the cake as training, retraining, and certification of pharmacists, is the hallmark/bedrock of clinical pharmacy. The quality of the keynote address speaker, guest speakers, and goodwill messages from internationally acclaimed scholars added flavour to the success. There was massive attendance beyond expectations. The venue, food, and cultural displays all worked in tandem to make it more colourful and impactful. We hope to improve on the minor lapses in subsequent conferences,” she added.


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