2015 World Pharmacist Day: Pharmacist; Your Partner in Health


Each year, the International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) which is the international body for Pharmacists and pharmaceutical societies  across the world celebrates the world Pharmacist day on the 25th of September to commemorate the day FIP was founded in 1912. One hundred and three years after that important date, the pharmacy profession has indeed added value to the world in terms of good health and prosperity. The life line of the health sector is medicine; without drugs and other pharmaceutical, nutraceutical and beauty products ,you will agree with me that our world will not have reached this age of advancement, growth and development. In this light, a day like this signifies the immense contributions of pharmacists and the pharmacy profession to our world.
Who is a Pharmacist?
Pharmacists are specialists in medicines and they understand their composition, chemical and physical properties, manufacture, uses, side effects and interactions with food and other medicines. Pharmacists are able to educate the public on the correct use of medicines and on the maintenance of health.  They also provide specialized information to doctors, nurses and other health professionals. Pharmacists are utterly involved in every aspect of the preparation and use of medicines, from research and development to eventual supply to a patient. More often than not, a pharmacist is the first person to be consulted by a patient as whether or not a doctor should be visited.
Who is a partner?
According to Oxford Advanced Learner’s dictionary, a partner is a person that you are doing an activity with. In other words, a partner is someone who is associated or united with others in an activity or sphere of common interest. Pharmacists are quite interested in working with you as your health partner in order for you to experience a healthy life.
What is health?
According to World Health Organization (WHO) health is defined in its broader sense in its 1948 constitution as a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.
It’s a well-known fact that the first point of call for most patients are the community pharmacies in their neighborhood.  And you will quite agree with me that the first person you often consult about your health challenges is a pharmacist. The pharmacist will decide whether you may visit a doctor or that you can be treated by one of the many remedies available in the pharmacy. In this wise, pharmacists play a big role in the health of individuals and the nation in general, For a healthy country is a productive country which is a result of healthy individuals who are productive.
 In reflection , every smart person is enjoined to have a pharmacist as a friend or as his or her health partner. A good relationship with your pharmacist will significantly enhance your health status. A pharmacist as your health partner will advise you on how and when to take your medicines for maximum effect, how to reduce side effects, how to avoid drug – drug interactions especially for patients taking plenty of drugs ( comorbidity) , food and vegetables to eat while taking medications to prevent untoward drug- food interaction  and the directions of specialized devices such as inhalers, Nebulizers and syringes. In addition, a pharmacist counsels you on the lifestyle modifications and non-pharmacological way of taking good care of your health.
It is a grim fact that pharmacists are authority on drug matters. Pharmacists are drug experts. They know the nitty-gritty of drugs, cosmetics, and other pharmaceutical products. Pharmacists are trained as communicators, counselors, and to work within a code of professional ethics that encompasses their relationship with other health professionals and the public. They have a well-developed sense of responsibility and a keen sense to details. Trust them, open up to them, follow their counsels and they will be in the best position to add value to your health.
It also pertinent for me to state here, that we are in the digital age, where information is readily available through a search on Google or any other search engines. Patients can easily access general information on any diseases but that is the more reason they need specialized information about their health. Your pharmacist is your health information specialist due to his wide knowledge in pharmacology, clinical pharmacy, pharmaceutics, pharmaceutical chemistry, pharmaceutical microbiology and pharmacognosy to give you first-hand information on why, what and how to experience optimum wellness and live a healthy life. I’ve helped many people manage stress, experience optimum wellness and stay healthy with healthy lifestyle tips and with my deep knowledge and rich experience as a drug expert and health coach.
According to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, safety is the second most important need of man, where health is usually categorized. However, I quite disagree with that; without health, the physiological needs of man are useless. When a man is seriously ill or involves in an accident or going through chronic pains like cancer, he doesn’t care about food, shelter, clothe or sex, what matters most to him at that moment of time is good HEALTH. Nothing more, nothing less. Like I always advise my friends, family, and anyone who cares to listen, health is the ultimate wealth. When our health suffers, every other aspect of our lives is affected; family, finance, spiritual, mental and other facets . A wise man takes good care of his health.
I SALUTE all pharmacists across the world for their selfless service to humanity.
God bless the pharmacy profession.
Sesan Kareem is a pharmacist, author and speaker. He writes from Lagos, Nigeria. www.sesankareem.com
Plot 3, Emmanuel Keshi Street, Magodo, Lagos,   Nigeria. +2348072983163



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