All is set for the Third Public Lecture of the Board of Fellows of the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (BOF-PSN) which comes up on Tuesday 29 June 2021, at the Sheraton Lagos Hotel, Ikeja, as two public health giants of Mr Boss Mustapha, secretary to the Government of the Federation and Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, Director General, Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), will be speaking on national development and healthcare system.
Chairperson, BOF-PSN, Prof. (Mrs) Mbang Femi-Oyewo, made the disclosure on Friday, while briefing journalists on the forthcoming events of the Board, which are the Third Public Lecture; Mid-Year Meeting for Fellows on Wednesday, 30 June 2021, as well as Award Night in the evening of same day.
She seized the opportunity to invite all members of the public in addition to pharmaceutical groups, non-pharma groups, captains of industry, professionals in governance and regulatory bodies, health professionals, economists, strategic planners and the media to the hybrid event, which can be viewed live on Zoom, Facebook, Instagram and Youtube @boardoffellows-psn.
Femi-Oyewo explained the essence of the BOF Mid-Year Meeting, saying it is the most important event of the Board, as it affords Fellows an opportunity to examine the position of Board, the PSN and the profession and strategise for their better positioning. It is also a time to participate in national discourse and make our contributions, not forgetting the networking and fellowship with one another.
“Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, Director General, Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), an infectious disease epidemiologist with verse national and international experience in public health shall deliver this year’s BOF Public Lecture with the theme: national Development and Healthcare System- Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic”, she stated.
She highlighted questions and areas of discussion to be addressed during the programmeas follows: “What is the current state of our national development and healthcare system; what impact has COVID-19 pandemic on national development and healthcare system? Negative and/or positive? Lessons learnt from COVID-19 pandemic; preparedness required for future public health emergency challenges; the way forward for Nigeria- national development, medicine/health security and healthcare system”.
The BOF Chairmperson mentioned other activities the Board is committed to, such as campaign against drug and substance abuse; endowment fund projects for the promotion of excellence in Pharmacy education and research, including : Best graduating student awards; Research grants for pharmaceutical research and development projects.
In his contribution, the Planning Committee Chairman, Pharm. (Sir) Sam Ubachukwu elucidated on the Board’s preparedness for the occasions, as they are set to present awards to four personalities during the events, while they are also planning to raise funds for the purchase of buses to facilitate easy implementation of their primary project.
“It is our primary project to ensure that awareness on drug and substance abuse is taken to the grassroots to enlighten everyone on the dangers of drug abuse and misuse”, he stated.
Fielding questions from journalists, on why the rise in drug abuse in spite of several campaigns against the heinous act, Prof. Femi-Oyewo emphasised the need for aggressive implementation of legislations against drug abuse and misuse, as the COVID-19 lockdown era promoted sexual violence, and other traumatic incidences in the community.
She thus charged parents and guardians to be very vigilant and careful of what they buy from supermarkets and garages as people keep advancing through different means in introducing drugs to the society such as mixing it with cookies, cakes, drinks and so on.