As part of activities to mark the World Pharmacists Day and to deepen relationship with members of its community, leading pharmaceutical supplier and multiple award- winning community pharmacy, Alpha Pharmacy and Stores Limited, organised health outreach across its branches in Ikeja area of Lagos State.
Speaking with Pharmanewsonline at the outreach, a senior pharmacist with Alpha and head of its regulatory affairs, Pharm. Olusola Adeniola, said the World Pharmacists Day was an occasion usually commemorated on 25 September of every year, to celebrate the profession of Pharmacy and the role of pharmacists in the healthcare delivery system.
Addressing participants at the event, the Chief Pharmacist -in -charge of Alabi Branch of Alpha Pharmacy, Pharm. Samuel Adewale, traced the origin of the World Pharmacists Day to the resolution of the International Pharmaceutical Federation(FIP) passed in Instanbul Turkey in 2009 setting aside a day to celebrate the role of pharmacists in healthcare delivery.
On why Alpha Pharmacy organised the health outreach, Pharm. Adewale remarked that Alpha Pharmacy and Stores was not a regular kind of pharmacy merely dispensing drugs noting that it has also enshrined as part of its policy the culture of engaging clients and having meaningful interactions with them with a view to counselling them and offering useful professional advice on how to go about their medications.
He advised the government to implement policies that will reduce the cost of healthcare services including cost of drugs, reduce brain drain in the health sector even as he observed that high cost of treatment was driving patients from quality healthcare services.
In her views, an intern pharmacist with Alpha Pharmacy and Stores, Jennifer Okafor said the World Pharmacy Day drew attention to the roles of pharmacists in the healthcare space and called on the government to improve patient’s access to quality healthcare by initiating policies which will reduce the costs of drugs and make them more affordable.
She noted that often times, patients’ prefer visiting the pharmacy than hospitals, due to cost and time of accessing quality medical services in the hospitals. With the economy taking a toll on patients, most of who engage in out-of-pocket healthcare purchase, she urged the government to work towards an improved economy so as to improve the purchasing power of people, especially their ability to afford the essential needs of life.
She said Alpha Pharmacy values relationship and interactions with its clients a lot and that their experience from such interactions has shown that sometimes, finding the solution to the clients’ health problems goes beyond medications to offering basic advice on lifestyle changes that could eventually help to improve their health.
The event which witnessed large turnout of participants from within and outside the Ikeja community had Alpha pharmacists on ground to provide consultancy services and conduct free screening such as blood pressure check, blood sugar test, hepatitis screening, eye screening and so on.