Stakeholders in the healthcare industry, including Dr Obalolu Ojo, chairman, Drug and Substance Abuse Committee, Nigeria Academy of Pharmacy (NAPHARM); Pharm. Samuel Adekola, national chairman, Association of Community Pharmacists of Nigeria (ACPN); and Dr Olushola Barnet Amure, chief medical director, Ifako-Ijaye General Hospital, have said that for the professionals to improve treatment outcomes of patients, there must be proper patients, education, as well as effective and efficient communication.
Ojo, a Fellow of the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (FPSN) and the Nigeria Academy of Pharmacy (FNAPharm), made his submission while delivering an address on the topic, “Improving Quality of Healthcare through Healthy Lifestyles and Assessing Quality Pharmaceutical Care”, at the Healthcare Stakeholders Forum, organised by the Association of Community Pharmacists of Nigeria (ACPN), King Zone, which comprises sub-zones from Iju-Ifako, Agege and its environs.
Speaking at the event, which was held at the African Church Grammar School Event Hall, Ifako, Ogba, Lagos State, the revered pharmacist stated that there is need for rational use of medications in order to have a favourable outcome, adding that community pharmacists play an important role in providing proper pharmaceutical care.
In his words, “The modern day pharmacist is a university-trained drug expert, with focus on patient care as against erstwhile drug-production-and-distribution-focused practice. As such, he is best positioned to play the unique roles of avoiding unnecessary and inappropriate drug use, providing guidance on right choice of drugs for disease conditions, patient counselling on adherence, as well as medication reviews and treatment outcomes monitoring.”
Speaking in the same vein, Pharm. Adekola cautioned Nigerians against using drugs indiscriminately, stressing that every drug is a poison and could be harmful, if taken without prescription.
Also speaking at the event, Dr Amure, who was represented by a principal medical officer at Ifako-Ijaye General Hospital, Dr Oluwatoyin Aiyelotan, noted that for best treatment outcomes, healthcare providers must leverage their training and communicate with empathy, adding that patients on their part should be free to share their concerns and complaints, as well as seeking clarification when in doubt.
According to him, healthcare providers are to continue to build competence in the area of communication to be able to consistently create good rapport with their patients for desired optimal outcomes, adding that while communication is both verbal and non- verbal, the non- verbal aspect accounts for a larger percentage of impact.
While speaking with Pharmanews, vice-chairman, ACPN King Zone, and coordinator, Planning Committee for the Stakeholders Forum, Pharm. Tolulope Ajayi, said the programme was designed to ensure members of the association were able to meet with the members of the public and interact with them, as well as creating awareness about healthy living to them.
Speaking further, Pharm. Ajayi disclosed that the Healthcare Stakeholders Forum was an annual platform of engagement and collaboration among the various healthcare providers and patients with focus on exploring avenues to improve treatment outcomes.
Amongst the dignitaries at the occasion were, Pharm. (Chief) Olaitan Sunday Ogunlade, zonal chairman, ACPN, King Zone; Pharm. (Mrs) Bolanle Adeniran, chairman, PSN, Lagos State Chapter; Pharm. Olabanji Benedict Obideyi, chairman, ACPN, Lagos State Chapter, who was represented by Pharm. Okotie Jonah, secretary, ACPN, Lagos State Chapter; Pharm. Abiola Paul-Ozieh; Pharm. Anthony Bola Oyawole; Pharm. Funsho Fakulujo; The Onifako of Ifako Kingdom, Oba Oyeyinka Taofeek Fatusi; The Onishaga of Ishaga, Alh. Abass Amole Ajibode; Baale of Panada, High Chief Omitola Ayinla Jacob; Baale of Fagba, High Chief Olusegun Shogunro Coker, among many others.