Ondo State Governor, Dr Olusegun Mimiko and some stakeholders in the health care industry, including President of the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN), Pharm. Olumide Akintayo, have called on community pharmacists in the country to be more dedicated in the discharge of their responsibilities to the public.
The governor who was the guest of honour at the opening ceremony of the 34thAnnual National Conference of the Association of Community Pharmacists of Nigeria (ACPN), tagged “Sunshine 2015”, made the call while speaking at the opening ceremony of the conference, held at Jorjein Hotel and Resorts, Akure, Ondo State recently.
The conference, had in attendance community pharmacists in their hundreds from across the nation, as well as other notable personalities, including Pharm. (Sir) Anthony Akhimien, former president, Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN) and current president, Africa Pharmaceutical Forum (APF); Pharm. Olumide Akintayo, president, PSN; Pharm. Azuibike Okwor, immediate past president, PSN; Pharm. Deji Osinoiki, former national chairman, ACPN; Dr Dayo Adeyanju, commissioner for health, Ondo State; Dr Kola Adenujimi, chief of staff, Ondo State; Barr. Oluwatoyin Akukotu, head of service; Dr (Mrs) Yemi Mamoud, commissioner for women affairs; Princess Adetutu Adesida, Regent of Akure; Pharm. Ejiro Foyibo, immediate past national chairman, ACPN, among others.
While speaking, the governor, who was accompanied by his wife, Chief (Mrs) Olukemi Mimiko, said he was delighted with the choice of the theme for the conference, “Exploring New Frontiers in Community Pharmacy Practice”, saying the theme was apt as it was coming at a time the country was battling with the challenge of fake and counterfeit medicines.
According to him, community pharmacists are the closest health care professionals to the people as they play very vital roles in promoting efficient health care to the people. This, he said, should spur them to be dedicated and passionate about their chosen profession.
The governor added that: “It should be noted that any government that wants to give qualitative health care to its people must also reckon with pharmacists, as their position in health care delivery system cannot be over emphasised.”
Also speaking at the event, the Regent of Akure, Princess Adetutu Adesida, called on all community pharmacists across the nation to imbibe the fear of God in their practice, adding that the practice of community pharmacy was very important to humanity as it entails saving lives.
The regent further stated that community pharmacists should strive to leave their comfort zone and think of establishing in rural areas which she said were underserved in pharmaceutical care.
While making his own contribution, the Registrar, Pharmacists Council of Nigeria (PCN), Pharm. N.A.E Mohammed, who was represented by Pharm. Hammed Babaseun, noted that the theme of the conference: was timely at this definite period in the country, adding that the various issues confronting the association would soon come to an end.
“We are here to inform the association that there is never a cloud that the sun cannot shine on; therefore, the ACPN and the pharmacy profession shall definitely shine, no matter the challenges,” he assured.
In his speech at the conference, PSN President, Pharm. Akintayo, noted that in furtherance of the theme of the conference, community pharmacists across the country must lead the way in the battle for better health and wellbeing of the people as community pharmacies provide a, convenient and less formal environment for those who cannot easily access other kinds of health service.
Akintayo said community pharmacists must be readily available to give sound, professional advice and to help their clients deal with everyday health concerns and problems facing them, adding that pharmacies should have dedicated consultation areas specifically for private discussion. He added that community pharmacists must evaluate emerging realities of retail chain outlets which must place emphasis on home grown chains.
The highlight of the event was the presentation of the “Distinguished Public Service Award” to the wife of the governor, Mrs Olukemi Mimiko, who is the founder of Maternal Pulse Foundation, a foundation that seeks the total well-being of women and provides support for families with multiple births.