The Nigeria Academy of Pharmacy (NAPharm), on Friday inducted 15 new Fellows into its fold and also conferred Life Fellowship on 10 of its founding Fellows, who have crossed 75 years old.
The 10 Fellows of the academy who bagged the Life Fellowship are Prince Julius Adelusi-Adeluyi; Pharm.(Chief) Olu Ainkugbe; Pharm. Bruno Nwankwo; Prof. Philip Olurinola; Pharm. (Dr) Evans C. Chidomere; Prof. Fola Tayo; Pharm. (Dr) Gabriel L. Eradiri; Prof. Oleka K. Udeala; Pharm. Godfrey Obiaga and Pharm. (Sir) Ifeanyi Atueyi.
Announcing the beneficiaries of the Life Fellowship of the academy, National President, NAPharm, Prince Adelusi-Adeluyi, stated that the academy gave the special status to the recipients in view of their brilliant contributions to the academy, coupled with their meritorious and selfless services to the pharmaceutical industry.
Presenting the award plaque to NAPharm Vice-President (South), Sir Atueyi, who is now 82 years old, Adelusi-Adeluyi specifically said : “The academy is giving you this award following your hard work for the institution and meritorious contributions to the advancement of the pharmaceutical sector. You must note that this award is not a license for you to go and relax but to do more for the academy and the pharmaceutical sector at large”.
The 15 new inductees into the academy are Dr John Alfa; Dr (Mrs) Tawa Idubor; Dr Nkere Ebube; Pharm. Matthew Obi Azoji; Prof. Ikemefuna Chijioke Uzorchukwu; Prof. Ndu D. Ifudu; Dr Mohammed Musa Zango; Prof. Emmanuel Ibezim; Prof. Azuka C. Oparah; Prof. Noel N. Wannang; Pharm.(Mrs) Clare Omatseye; Pharm. (Dr) Margaret O. Obono; Prof. (Mrs) Bolajoko A. Aina; Prof. (Mrs) Oluwatoyin A. Odeku and Prof. Moses A. Akanmu.
The President of the academy noted that the new inductees were drawn from diverse array of disciplines and are united by the quest to propel mankind to new frontiers of wellness and good health, on the background of pharmacy and the pharmaceutical sciences.
According to the former Minister of Health, using pharmaceutical research and development to break new grounds is one of the bedrocks of the academy, and in doing this, he stressed that the academy will drive through strategic advocacy and other means, towards increasing government and societal support for scientific and pharmaceutical research.
He said “We are also very particular about the study and teaching of Pharmacy and pharmaceutical sciences as we continue to make input into these critical areas, in conjunction with the Deans of Nigeria’s Pharmacy Schools, the National University Commission (NUC) and the Pharmacists’ Council of Nigeria (PCN). The objective is to ensure that training of pharmacists in Nigeria continuously embodies global practices.
“Even though our efforts as an academy in this and other areas are well documented, resting our oars is not an option. We will continue to strive to ensure that ultimately across our country, our people are able to derive utmost benefit from a profession that has been an harbinger of good health to all mankind from time immemorial-Pharmacy”.
Meanwhile, the President of the Nigerian Association of Pharmacists and Pharmaceutical Scientists in the America (NAPPSA), Dr Teresa I. Ponds, has called on Nigerian pharmacists to collaborate, not just with their fellow pharmacists but also with professionals in other disciplines in the health sector.
In her presentation titled “Expanding role of pharmacists in primary healthcare”, Dr Pounds who was the guest speaker at the NAPharm event noted that pharmacists play major roles in primary healthcare, stressing that the roles of pharmacists in healthcare, in the last eight years, has expanded across all fronts.
“Pharmacists’ role in the primary healthcare revolves around collaboration with other disciplines to be able to provide quality service. We need to collaborate with physicians, nurses and other professionals. As much as there must be collaboration, there must also be mutual respect among all the disciplines for one another. The scope of practice for each professional in the primary healthcare must be clearly defined”, the guest speaker said.
Expatiating on role of pharmacists in the primary healthcare, Dr Pounds averred that pharmacists communicate with the public easily because they are always accessible. “Pharmacists communicate easily with patients. All over the world, pharmacists are vaccinators, they immunised. Medication education is another major role of pharmacists in primary healthcare”, Pounds said.
She also expressed the need for Nigeria trained pharmacists to get exposed so that they will be able to practice what they learned in the school. As the President of NAPPSA, Pounds averred that she’s ready to work with pharmacists in Nigeria so that the profession can attain the desire greater height.
Earlier in his remarks, the Executive Director of the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency, Dr Faisal Shuaib, commended pharmacists for the role they are playing in the health sector, stressing that the agency is ready to partner with NApharm to enable both parties move the health sector forward.
In his goodwill message, the Registrar, PCN, Pharm. Elijah Mohammed, noted that NAPharm has been useful to the council in numerous ways. He pointed out that pharmacists have been playing immense roles in the health sector; hence they should be recognised as primary healthcare professionals. The PCN registrar also called on doctors and pharmacists to come together and ensure that the policy of prescribing and dispensing works perfectly.
Also speaking at the event, the President of Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN) Pharm. (Mazi) Sam Ohuabunwa, pointed out that every profession must make itself relevant in any community it serves. He therefore charged pharmacists in the country to make themselves relevant so that the profession can earn the recognition it deserves in the country.
While the PSN president specifically urged all qualified pharmacists across the country to continue to raise their voices for the profession, he noted that political power is relevant for any profession to get the needed recognition, stressing that pharmacists cannot afford to take the back seat in the political affairs of the country.