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bringing pharmacy, knowledge and students together Volume 20 | Edition 2 | February 2013

25 people, 15 countries Steps towards the professional world - one team Students at Working internationally professional this newsletter is produced by EPSA and is distributed to all EPSA congresses members, national pharmaceutical

Future Role of the pharmacist EAHP and PGEU look

students’ organisations, faculties, official bodies and partners

European Pharmaceutical Students’ Association

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Table of contents and Editor’s words Sofia - a city to fall in love with - Autumn Assembly review, page 6 Reacting with a statement


PGEU Blueprint of community pharmacy


25 people, 15 countries, one team EPSA President about working in an international team, page 10 Internship at Drug Information Association


Professional Congresses


Members’ page


European Antibiotics Awareness Day - what students did and its impact


The new EPSA Event Calendar


5th Training New Trainers coming up


IMP Procedure infographic


EAHP and PGEU look to the future roles of the pharmacist together


Medicines sant frontières - interview on social services and pharmacy


Event calendar - what’s going on in Europe? page 30 Contact info


Dear readers, We hope that you managed to spend a nice time in the holiday season with the ones who matter to you and the appropriate atmosphere. We also hope that you’ve used those free days to build a deux ex machina which helped you to magically pass all of your exams, so that you can enjoy 2013 to the fullest. At EPSA we have been busy and are proud to present you with numerous activities to spend all that free time you have. Educational, cultural, fun, professional; those are some of the options EPSA is providing you with. It is entirely up to you to dig into this Newsletter and make the selection that suits your needs.

Wish you a great year and all the best! Miloš Stojković EPSA Vice-President of Public Relations

Special thanks to: Stefan Rack - Design and Editing Maria Stef; Edel O’Connor, Jakub Kubiak, Anne Downing - Editorial Board 3

Presidential words Dear EPSA friends, It is with great pleasure that we present to you the second edition of the EPSA Newsletter for the mandate of 2012-2013. Our association is, as you know, one with broad horizons. While we represent students and work towards student initiatives and the importance of the voice of the students, our work doesn’t stop at the student side of the equation, because neither does yours. Sooner or later, we will all be professionals and we must be ready to take that leap. Picture the crossing into the professional world as crossing a river. In some places it’s wider than in others, so finding the right place to cross might involve walking along the shore for a bit. In addition to that, you might want to cross to a specific place, but what if you don’t know how to? Metaphor aside, this is where we come in. By being an association with multiple professional and institutional partners, we do our best to consistently provide our members with opportunities for getting and staying in touch with the professional world. This is accomplished in many ways. Throughout the years, we advertise events, share opportunities and fee waivers. We write reports, interview people and share their stories and paths, so those who could not attend can still have valuable insight on what went on. We help directly and indirectly, even creating events that provide our members an edge in specific situations. And from the other side of the arrow, we are huge advocates of student involvement, letting our partners know exactly how important it is not only for students to be in their events, but for those to be specifically targeted also at them.


In all this, professionalism is key. By doing the best we can and know, we in EPSA earn the respect and trust of the people who have the resources to make things happen and drive change. The biggest display of our professionalism may well be the event that is tied to this edition of the Newsletter: the EPSA Annual Reception. Taking place in the European Parliament in Brussels, it gives us the opportunity not only to showcase EPSA’s work throughout the year to our major partners, but also to bring a student perspective to a topic of great importance to all: this year’s edition will be focusing on ‘Health Inequalities & Access to Medicines’. Aiming to draw students and the major stakeholders together to discuss this topic, we believe we can bring the social impact of reduced access to medicines - as well as the issue of medicines shortages in the different sectors of the supply chain - into the spotlight. Taking this note and returning to the river metaphor, what we aim for is a synergy; that while you cross, people in both banks are guiding you and helping you through. This is what ‘bridging the gap’ is all about. Yours in EPSA, Pedro Barroca

Pedro Barroca EPSA President

Sofia - a city to fall in love with Autumn Assembly 2012 The Autumn Assembly is the second biggest event on EPSA’s yearly schedule. Last October more than 200 students from every corner of Europe gathered for one week in Bulgaria’s capital, Sofia, to discuss the Assembly’s main topic: Pharmacoeconomics. For us, going to Bulgaria seemed to become an adventure. While no one from our delegation had been to the country before, we all knew some myths about the ‘wild wild east’ that was awaiting us. At the airport we were somehow disappointed. No dodgy taxi driver awaited us. No custom official accused us of smuggling illegal goods into the country. But, there were some friendly girls greeting us with the EPSA sign held in their hands. We knew we were in good hands.


On the way to the hotel, right outside the airport, we picked up a guy with an Argentinian flag tied around his back. He seemed a bit lost and we wondered how he had managed to get as far as Bulgaria on his own. His name was Jorge but we simply called him ‘El Gaucho’. It turned out that he would also be a participant of the Congress. At the Congress we were given a short introduction about EPSA and what we could expect from the week that was ahead of us. Miloš, EPSA’s VicePresident of Public Relation promised us we would have the craziest time of our lives. Of course I did not believe him at that time but I was proven wrong.

What followed was not only high quality lectures with distinguished keynote speakers during the day but also wicked theme parties on every night of the week. It was truly amazing to see the EPSA team coping with the situation. Although they partied hard at night, they remained surprisingly professional during the daily sessions of the General Assembly. The second day of the Assembly was especially remarkable for me. The EPSA family grew bigger for one member as AFÖP Austria was granted EPSA membership.

One thing that surprised me most, besides seeing how professional a student organisation can be run was to see how much effort and dedication the Reception Committee put into this congress. Whereas I managed to get a couple of hours of sleep every night, they seemed to be constantly busy organizing this event and making this an even greater experience than I could have ever imagined. Therefore I would like to give my sincere thanks to the great people of the RC of the EPSA Autumn Assembly 2012. Thank you guys. You are the best!

“What a night! What a Congress! EPSA spirit had completely got to me!” On the fourth day of the Congress, I was able to see Sofia in daylight for the first time. We were given a tour guide to show us around the city. As we strolled around the historic centre, we could see beautiful art nouveau architecture that was not always perfectly restored but still more charmful. We passed by the main square that was surrounded by churches of the four of the largest religions in the world, something you do not get to see often in other European capitals. All of us enjoyed the special atmosphere that surrounded us and dozens of group pictures were taken, as everyone wanted to capture this special moment. This was the moment I fell in love with this city.

Robert Zika Graduate from Pharmacy School at University of Vienna AFÖP President 2012/2013

Back at the hotel, we were felt relaxed and ready for the big night that was ahead of us, the European Night. Members from each European country brought their local specialities and it is not just food what I am talking about! What a night! What a Congress! EPSA spirit had completely got to me!


Reacting with a statement “The European Pharmaceutical Students’ Association (EPSA) has been informed by its member association, Association Nationale des Etudiants en Pharmacie de France (ANEPF), about the situation in France, involving the Portuguese university, University Fernando Pessoa (UFP) opening a branch in Toulon on the 12th of November 2012. UFP is based in Porto, Portugal, but through the European Union’s Professional Qualifications Directive, claims to have the right to provide healthcare education such as pharmacy to French students. EPSA wishes to voice its strong concern for the potential consequences of the establishment of this university in France for French pharmacy students.” This was the beginning of a statement that EPSA had launched in order to voice its concerns. The topic in focus was the opening of a new faculty of pharmacy in France, which was followed by a big controversy. The representation of the topic was brought forward to EPSA members by ANEPF and the discussion was ready to start. The discussion touched upon many topics, giving all participants an insight into the current French system and the ways the new faculty would be implemented in the current set of French and European regulations. This discussion pointed out the controversial topics, in the end resulting in a statement that was supported by the majority of EPSA member associations. The statement can be found and read on EPSA website:


European Community Pharmacy Blueprint Blueprint is a word originally used to call a type of paper-based reproduction process producing white-on-blue images, used primarily for technical and architecture’s drawings, now largely replaced by other technologies. Nowadays, this term is widely used to describe any detailed plan, roadmap or prototype that influences subsequent practice. The European Community Pharmacy Blueprint, unanimously adopted by the PGEU General Assembly 15th November, 2012, reflects the desire among European community pharmacists, despite the difficult economic climate, to advance the pharmacy profession and practice in order to provide patients with the best and most cost-effective care possible, and to face current and future challenges in healthcare. This blueprint document serves two key purposes: aims to improve understanding among EU institutions and national governments of the current and future role of community pharmacy and sets out a vision for a modern community pharmacy practice.

Modern community pharmacy practice is increasingly complex and relies on the expertise of the community pharmacists, the unique community pharmacy setting and the available technology. The Blueprint divides pharmacy practice into four principle areas: medicine safety and access to medicines, treatment outcomes of individual patients, public health, and efficiency and quality of the health system. The fact that the community pharmacy is very often the first and last point of the patient’s interaction with health system, uniquely positions the community pharmacy network in health systems. However, health systems do not stand still. The organisational environment in which pharmacy operates constantly changes and evolves. Community pharmacies, as an essential part of health systems, are ready to embrace change. Community pharmacists need to be ready to play an active role in the primary healthcare team, supporting the development of national medicine management strategies, and providing a wider range of patient centered services. Safeguarding the professional independence of pharmacists, keeping them free from commercial pressure, is essential for the further development of pharmacy practice. PGEU invites European Pharmacy Students- future of European community pharmacy to embrace their vision so that services offered at European community pharmacies, at the heart of the communities by highly qualified and independent healthcare professionals – community pharmacists - further support individual patients, public health and the healthcare system. The Blueprint is now available on the PGEU website ( in English, Estonian, French, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Slovak and Spanish.


Working in an international team Twenty-five people, fifteen countries - one team The first thing to acknowledge about the EPSA Team is that, being students, we are professional, but we are also volunteers. It’s a difficult balance. We are not paid for what we do, yet everyone puts their heart into what is effectively a daily job, with implications on our lives and those of the people around us. We do it because we work for something greater than each of us as individuals, because we strive to make a difference in the lives of so many other people. Yet, I believe taking each Team member’s needs into account as much as possible is a good first step towards having everyone enjoy what they’re doing to the fullest.

delivered. Add to this the fact that we’re working in a virtual environment and that English is almost no one’s mother tongue, and it’s quite clear how easy it is to misinterpret others. What this means is that it takes a healthy dose of understanding to get the job done and, when differences of opinion appear, settling them properly might not be easy. This is true of all teams, of course, but even more so in an inherently international one.

“...the best strategy is to develop common goals that all members of the Team can see themselves reflected in.” We also have different aspirations and needs, both as Team members, and as individuals. This is perhaps the hardest thing to manage, and it is where the heart of everyone’s motivation lies. In an ideal world, it would be possible to keep everyone happy and highly motivated all the time, but democracy typically implies compromise and, to some extent, giving up personal wishes for the sake of the whole. Still, in my opinion, it is extremely important that people don’t feel neglected because of it. Not surprisingly, a cohesion that is able to keep that consistently at bay is equally difficult to achieve right direction unless there’s common ground.

The EPSA Team is always composed of people from several cultural backgrounds. Awareness of this is key in reading and, perhaps more importantly, anticipating how each person will react to a given situation. The way each of us communicates within the Team is heavily influenced by where we come from and what we’re used to, so what one person sees as a great idea could be viewed as nonsense by another. This applies to content and form alike, so not only the message itself, but also how it is


An individual approach is certainly possible, sometimes even being the only way to get someone back on track. But the best strategy is to develop common goals that all members of the Team can see themselves reflected in. This must be done several times throughout the mandate, because as each major discussion arises, it cannot head in the right direction unless there’s common ground.

What this translates into is a downright lack of time for proactively taking care of each other, and even of ourselves. When this point is reached, motivation quickly becomes an issue that, if left unattended, can have serious consequences. In order to mitigate this, an environment that encourages open communication in the Team is vital, but it is not enough, because people have different communication styles and will not always say if something is wrong. If they do, we can conjure the energy to react. But pre-emptive action requires having energy to spare, and that is where EPSA Teams often hit a brick wall these years.

At this point, other things come into play. We’re only able to be together, talking face-to-face, a few times during our mandate. When we’re not, work piles up beyond measure, taking up all of our energy. It’s safe to say that we’re constantly overburdened by our core tasks, making it hard to have energy to focus on anything beyond that.



In the beginning of this mandate, when running for the position of President, I said that the association must stop growing. For the past years, it expanded at an alarming rate, and nowadays Team members, particularly the Executive, receive a daily amount of emails that is fit not for a student, but for a company executive. Astonishingly, it’s possible to keep up with this volume of work, but the situation is far from optimal. We now need to draw our focus within and, with everyone’s help, I’ve understood that the solution is likely to be found in matters of basic functioning of the association and Team.

“...having fun together is one of the most important things of all and so is making enough time for it.”

As you can see, I do not write this to talk about what great things we do in the association or how good we are at doing them, because you can find out about that in so many other ways. I am here to show you that we are also human, we have problems and numerous challenges and we face them together; and that is what makes us good at what we do. I am proud beyond words of every single member of this Team for being able to give so much of themselves to work for others; their selflessness and good will are limitless in my eyes. Getting to know everyone, working together and laughing together has been, hands down, the most gratifying experience in my entire life.

One idea currently in the works is a complete overhaul of EPSA’s communication structure, along with a pragmatic re-evaluation of our tasks because as EPSA has tried to improve itself over the years, things have often been layered on top of each other, adding volume without necessarily adding value. We must ensure that the drive for perpetual improvement that characterises this association doesn’t have the opposite effect, making it ‘all work and no play’. I strongly believe that, for any high-performing Team, having fun together is one of the most important things of all and so is making enough time for it. Pedro Barroca EPSA President


EPSA Internship at DIA Europe The permanent officer and continuous internship at PGEU (Pharmaceutical Group of the European Union) offices in Brussels still stands as a proud certificate of trust that EPSA has enjoyed for over 10 years. This year another permanent internship has started its operation, this time with the society of hospital pharmacists (EAHP - introduced in the last edition of the Newsletter), making the steady partnership with Drug Information Association somewhat out of focus for many. But not for EPSA and DIA, who were keen to explore the next step of collaboration, that led to around 100 highly motivated students to join this year’s DIA flagship event and get engaged with professionals by attending the EuroMeeting. An email arrived and EPSA was looking at the third internship provided by an institutional partner. This time in one of the most attractive pharmaceutical cities in Europe: Basel, Switzerland. In the beginning of October, all the papers were finally set and the internship was ready to start. First plans for the intern involved supporting the DIA Clinical Forum, an event that was introduced with the fellowship programmes only this year, but the paperwork caused a delay. However, the internship start favoured EuroMeeting instead and the EPSA intern joined just in time for preparations of this event. Working directly inside of the DIA premises, rather than acting as a distant partner, gave a deep insight on how the EuroMeeting is organised.


It was interesting to see how complex the network of preparations is and to spot the differences and similarities with the EPSA ways. The level

“ It was interesting to see how complex the network of preparations is and spot the differences and similarities with the EPSA ways.” of engagements of various structures and the challenges the organisation was facing opened up a lot of learning space for the overall process to be understood. In contrast, being close to fellowship programmes made the position of EPSA intern perfect to shape them according to needs of students and young professionals together with helping whenever some issue occurred.

Issues and things to be followed-up proved to be a big aspect of the organisation, an aspect that is so easy to foresee looking into the simplicity of the final product. This dedication allowed for needs and aspirations of applicants to be understood better. The progress of understanding reflected on other tasks as well. Maybe the most notable being the communication with patient representatives and advocates, a population that is receiving a special

In the end, let’s only touch upon another interesting and important topic. The internship recruited an active EPSA team member to move to Basel, changing its place of residence and dedicating its time and energy for the association. Benefits of this move proved to be great, especially when knowing the rich history Basel has in the field of pharmaceutical research and production, and hosting several leaders of the world pharma scene. Looking from the perspective of industrial interest or its lean on three countries, Basel proved to be a very interesting city for a “second EPSA permanent office”. There is much more to be said from both an institutional perspective and a one personal as well. Seeing the overall positive feeling that resulted, let’s leave this for next generations.

treatment and were perceived as a friends of students during the recently finished Clinical Forum. EPSA will make sure not to miss the special sessions aimed at patients’ place in the health-care system that will happen at the EuroMeeting.

Miloš Stojković EPSA Vice-President of Public Relations

Jytte Lyngvig, Director of DIA Europe: “Having an intern from EPSA working full time at DIA offices has been an important experience for DIA Europe. Aims of opening DIA events more to students and young professionals have benefited from this move and with the high level of professionalism shown by the intern we are very satisfied how the partnership with EPSA is developing.”



Steps towards the professional world Students at professional congresses Student representation was always welcomed to the events of professional societies. However, in the recent years we have witnessed the opening up of many professional congresses to not just student representatives, but to a more general category: students - participants. From joint events with European Society of Clinical Pharmacists and a group visit to Drug Information Association’s Clinical Forum during an Autumn Assembly, EPSA has moved onto a more straightforward concept in relation to professional congresses. This includes providing students with information on appropriate congresses that could be visited under special, student circumstances and


engaging with the organisers so as to ensure that needs of students are fulfilled. Only in the last year, engagement became notable with several partners. Ranging from promotion and local support such was Expopharm in Germany, to session shape-up and panel engagements happening on two DIA events. The involvement went all the way: organising student packages that included registration fee, accommodation, food and the social part done for the FIP Centennial congress by a task force, gathering the member representatives of EPSA, IPSF and K.N.P.S.V. (The Royal Dutch Pharmaceutical Students Association).

No matter if it is the poster exhibition that attracts participants, interesting talks with the international circle of professionals, pursuit for more knowledge on specific matters or just getting a feel of the professional choices of tomorrow; this area of professional development that EPSA has brought closer to its students is increasing growth. Feedback from students tell us that it’s here to stay.

A mark will certainly be left in 2013, at the upcoming congress of the European Association of Hospital Pharmacists, where affordable student fees have only recently been introduced. Apart from general support, our permanent EPSA intern is being actively engaged in shaping the student aspects of the congress. The event already saw great interest among students and we are eager to see the development.

Miloš Stojković EPSA Vice-President of Public Relations


NoPSA Norway may not the bid for the Autumn Assem 2013 but their activity didn’t d Recently ended NoPSA cong and its reviews are to confirm t

Members’ page What’s going on in EPSA countries?

Charity & freshmen parties, general assembly and national patient counselling event or both DIA’s EuroMeeting & Clinical Forum are around the corner. Dutch students are very active during this period.

Apart from raising their concerns for the opening of the first private faculty of pharmacy in France, the French students also managed to send an invitation for a skiing event to whole of Europe, organise a couple of more events and visit the ones of their colleagues.

In the tour around 8/9 faculties in Portugal, “Mobility Days” aim to attract attention of Portuguese students for international activity. Looking into the numbers of EPSA congresses, the project is very successful.


Basel hosted students from all over Switzerland and from EPSA & IPSF as well. Lectures, trainings, public health and parties were held. Chocolate included.

W B e m v h

won mbly drop. gress that!

When IPSF Leaders in Training and EPSA Training projects collide together, the result is several days of learning, socialising and great fun. This is what happened in Hradec KrĂĄlove, Czech Republic for Polish, Slovakian and Czech students. European Antibiotic Awareness Day digital campaign? Why not doing a physical one as well? During the campaign, students from Slovenia and Croatia extended its scope in physical realm, sharing the knowledge and awareness with support from their faculties.

What better way of doing a good deed? By doing it together with someone else! Members of MPSA, together with medicals students of EMSA Macedonia visited kindergartens teaching little ones how to lead a healthy lifestyle.

Autumn Assembly is over and it’s time to relax, but social media are still buzzing with photos and reviews of the event!

Read more about these and related stories on 19

European Antibiotic Awareness Day Be proactive against antibiotic misuse! As Antibiotic Microbial Resistance (AMR) is threatening the quality of our lives more and more and is expected to seriously affect society’s health, EPSA continues its actions to raise awareness and educate people in this aspect. In November 2012, EPSA reached an approximate six-digit-number of people from all over the world and from different fields of interest, combining both modern and traditional means of communicating important health messages. The activities were organized alongside the multifaceted approach to AMR proposed by the European Parliament’s Committee for the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety: prudent use of antimicrobials in human and veterinary medicine, prevention, development of new antimicrobials or alternatives for treatment, monitoring and reporting, communication, education and training and international cooperation. With this in mind, EPSA became a partner of EAAD (European Antibiotic Awareness Day) in 2010 and by 2011 developed a public health campaign aimed at promoting EAAD among pharmacy students. After the great success the campaign had, motivation to build up on that was even higher and the ‘virtual’ campaign continued this year and used more diverse means of promotion. In the centre of the social media, the strategy was Facebook and Twitter as activities from the previous year proved the efficiency of promotion through such means and showed an increase in the involvement of students in EAAD related activities.


To directly get in touch with the members through the powerful messages of EAAD’s materials, Facebook was used and it targeted both interested students but also the general public through the options of sharing this platform offers. The considerable rise in EPSA’s Facebook page activity during the campaign (16th - 22nd November) ensures awareness for thousands of pharmacy students but also of their non-pharmaceutical social media connections. Moreover, on the actual campaign day (the 18th November), several national associations had their own initiatives using their Facebook pages, spreading the message further and with positive feedback.

Picture showing the reach of EPSA’s facebook page.

Beyond the digital world, the European Antibiotic Awareness Day made an impact on antibiotic use on a local level as well. Several member associations of EPSA planned activities in their university or city, including students, professors and even the public. Scan the QR code and head over to the blog to find out more about this!

Twitter proofed to be a useful tool for getting in contact with other associations and institutions, as well as expanding the target audience. EPSA took an active part in the Twitter chat organized by ECDC in collaboration with WHO on the 20th November and kept the followers updated about the debate in the chat and motivating students to join the discussion.

Monica Luca EPSA Social Services & Public Health Coordinator

Since the key of success in the AMR challenge lies in collaboration, EPSA combined efforts with EMSA (European Medical Students Association) to maximize efficiency of the joint efforts. In order to gain an overview of the level of knowledge healthcare professionals and students have, colleagues from EMSA developed a questionnaire assessing the level of preparation future pharmacists and doctors have in dealing with AMR but also pointing of key elements of antibiotic misuse. Results showed that students see a high risk in AMR, acknowledge their responsibility in dealing with antibiotic raising resistance and that they would like further training in counselling.


The EPSA Events Calendar Your way to Europe The EPSA events calendar is the place to consult when you are looking for some nice occasions to meet fellow pharmacy students from all over the continent. Newly established during this mandate, this tool is an online service from your Events Coordinator to seduce you to leave your common habits and go out and explore the world around you. The story of the Events Calendar is a personal one of reaction and action. Already in my mandate as LS, I was repeatedly claiming for creating a structured website which gives up-to-date information about events in Europe. Because it is indeed not easy to keep track of what’s going on in EPSA world - there is a lot to follow-up and to put into a context, which is just confusing when you are looking from outside. So for me it came to the point when one feels like stepping up for an idea one is convinced of and just do it!

“...bringing people together is one of the nicest things...” As for me, bringing people together is one of the nicest things I like to do, investigations were made till an appropriate form for the website was found. So since Summer 2012 EPSA has this new service of information I want to provide you with; I hope you like it! Wanna go and explore?


The Events Calendar is a tool easy to grasp once you have visited it. From the EPSA main page, the calendar directs you to the certain happening where in most cases a more detailed description is found. You will be able to find three different types of events which can be of value for you, depending on your own interest: 1. EPSA’s own events and events organized in collaboration with EPSA are of course presented and promoted here. You will also be able to find a broader elucidation of those events and all info about the program and registration on an extra page of the website.

“...get first access to the professional world of pharmacy.” 2. External events from professional aspect can be found here. Those events are filtered by the EPSA Team and considered to be beneficial and exciting for you. So this way there is a certain guarantee that students attending will not be bored to death whilst being part of those occasions to get first access to the professional world of pharmacy. In most cases there are particular agreements with the organizers regarding students’ fees or special students sessions - so it’s like to make sure that they really want you there, to share knowledge and education with others.

It doesn’t matter whether you are more interested in attending an event, or inviting people to your country. If you feel like sharing your event with others, do so! If you feel like attending an event, go!

3. For me, the most important section is the category of ‘students’ events’. Herein you can find gatherings offered from your fellow students, who made some efforts to be able to invite people from other countries: you! That’s a really nice gift! What can you expect from here? There are congresses, training events, conferences, fairs or adventurous weekends which are open for you to be part of, to share your time with these other people and build new memories and experiences.

What about you now?


At the bottom of the events page, you will also find a link to an evaluation form, where you can give personal and anonymous feedback about the event you attended. Be guarantee that your comments will definitely be considered. I’m looking forward for you to step up as an explorer of happenings in your EPSA world. Hope you enjoy becoming eventive! Yours in EPSA, Daniela Daniela Kolberg EPSA Events Coordinator


Training New Trainers An event where EPSA trainers are born to live Already the 5th TNT event knocks on the door, taking place in Brussels from 17th - 23rd February. It will be a special undertaking not only because of the little anniversary but also due to the new special establishing. Starting from 2009, when the event took place for the first time, it has generated over 35 trainers across Europe, who contribute actively to the educational programme at EPSA congresses. By delivering soft and hard skills trainings for pharmacy students, trainers fill the gap between the university education and further expectations coming from the pharmaceutical market. TNT is the way most enter the world of becoming EPSA Trainers. Skills obtained will allow them to deliver EPSA Trainings and spread their experiences all around Europe afterwards. This year the Training New Trainers event will be unique in several aspects. For the first time EPSA organizes a joint event in cooperation with ESTIEM (European Students of Industrial Engineering and Management), where half of the participants and trainers come from another association. This idea was a succession of a long-term partnership in the training field between the above mentioned NGOs and should lead to an exchange of good practice as well as continuous improvements in the event itself.


Also, the length of the upcoming TNT has been changed and by gaining extra days, many significant topics for future trainers can be included. Participants can expect sessions focused on development of skills needed whilst conducting a training, and so the topics will circle around: presentation skills, communication, facilitation & debriefing and training design. The last day is meant for the training challenge, when participants have a chance to put into practice all the knowledge and skills they have gained from the beginning of TNT by designing and delivering their own short session on a chosen topic.

“Don’t be just open minded, be open HEARTED!” “Don’t be just open minded, be open HEARTED!” said one of the participants as advice for future participants after completing the 2nd TNT. Even though the whole trainers family unanimously admit, Training New Trainers’ is a demanding and challenging event, it can very likely be a life changing experience.

Anna Perelka, EPSA Trainer Medical University of Warsaw (Poland)


EAHP and PGEU look to the future roles of the pharmacist together “There are probably more opportunities of cooperation between hospital and community pharmacists than ever before. To take one example, the increasing need to limit hospital stays and let primary care take the burden of caring for some patient groups, makes it absolutely essential that there is a proper reconciliation of hospital and community prescribed medication. That is a problem that is only going to grow. I think it is important therefore that both hospital and community pharmacists pursue a similar agenda with regard to what the profession as a whole can achieve, in this and other area such as adherence, and to jointly seize the professional opportunities available.” John Chave, PGEU Secretary General For the first time, a joint statement has been delivered by the two organisations representing community and hospital pharmacists in Europe, PGEU (Pharmaceutical group of the European Union) and EAHP (European Association of Hospital Pharmacists) [1]. This reflects that there is a real and growing need to enhance the role for pharmacists in direct patient care and the statement reinforces the organisations’ desire to work together for this goal. This includes promoting the pharmacist’s role in optimising the medication of patients and also the role of pharmacists as part of a multi-disciplinary healthcare team. The statement indicates a shared commitment regarding collaboration between the organisations to develop the pharmacist’s role in optimising patient


use of medication. Whilst representing the interests of their respected members the statement is a signal that joint advocacy for the profession on certain key issues is in the interest of pharmacists and more importantly patients. Combined advocacy will become an important aspect of the work of the two organisations to most effectively promote enhanced roles for pharmacists. Speaking on the publication of the statement, Dr Roberto Frontini, EAHP President said: “The joint statement by EAHP and PGEU represents our shared goals in maximising the benefits the health service derives from pharmacists’ expertise in medicines. More than ever before decisionmakers in the health sector must ask and answer important questions about how to improve the outcomes achieved for patients from medicines. The pharmacist’s positive role in ensuring optimal use of medicines by patients is therefore a central consideration to successfully meeting the challenges of today and tomorrow”.[2] Dr Isabelle Adenot, PGEU President said: “While patients receive primary care as well as hospitalbased care, European pharmacists practise in both settings and share the challenge of improving the rational use of medicines. Having a common roadmap can help them to progress. This is the purpose of our joint statement.” [2]

From a student perspective, David Preece, current EPSA (European Pharmaceutical Students’ Association) Secretary General and EAHP Intern, acknowledges that working together is essential, especially when the profession as a whole strives for recognition: ”Speaking together on certain issues can give pharmacy a louder voice on the European stage and it’s encouraging that cooperation between all the various European pharmacy bodies, including PGEU and EAHP, but also EPSA and others, is growing in response to that need.” Guilherme Monteiro Ferreira, current EPSA Vice President of External Affairs and PGEU Intern, based in the PGEU, comments that this kind of initiative shows how different sectors of the pharmaceutical profession can be united when the causes are for the greater good of the profession itself. He states that addressing issues such as the optimisation of health systems and patient safety shows how committed and relevant the pharmacist is for society. As a recent graduate, Guilherme comments: “These initiatives make me confident of a brighter future of the profession as it shows the commitment of the current stakeholders on adapting and improving the profession as a result of increasingly demanding society. EPSA, through its established internship programme, is delighted to be contributing to PGEU’s and EAHP’s activities in these areas at this exciting time.”

next EPSA congress, taking place in Italy in April, will address issues such as developing pharmacy education to fit the future needs of our profession as well as what the role of specialisation could or should be in that equation. With an increasing direction from the European level for collaboration within and between healthcare professions, following the example of EAHP and PGEU, EPSA also hopes to see similar collaboration on local and national levels.

Guilherme Monteiro Ferreira EPSA Vice-President of External Affairs Tiia Metiäinen EPSA Vice-President of Education David Preece EPSA Secretary General References: 1.PGEU and EAHP Joint Statement on the development of the Pharmacy Profession 2012 [cited 04/02/2013]; Available from: http://www.eahp. eu/content/pgeu-and-eahp-joint-statement-development-pharmacyprofession. 2.Price, R., European Hospital and Community Pharmacists issue joint statement on future pharmacist roles. The European Journal of Hospital Pharmacy, 2013(1).

As students represent potential for all pharmaceutical sectors, EPSA also strives to look for what those sectors have in common and how that fits in the bigger picture of the development and future of our profession. Through its work and events, EPSA wants to encourage students and professionals to engage in dialogue and recognise areas of mutual interest as well as come up with concrete suggestions on how to work on them. Furthermore, this is something that should be supported by pharmacy curricula, as students will be the people working in those sectors one day. The


Social services & pharmacy the MSF approach As healthcare professionals, pharmacists have a huge role in influencing the health of their community and educating people around them about medicines and healthy lifestyles. So no matter their workplace, pharmacy professionals expand their responsibilities by helping to achieve a better level of healthcare. To give an example of how your job can be linked to humanitarian actions, here you have an interview with Mrs. Elodie Jambert, International Pharmacist Coordinator for Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF). Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is an international, independent, medical humanitarian organisation that delivers emergency aid to people affected by armed conflict, epidemics, healthcare exclusion and natural or manmade disasters. MSF works in approximately 80 countries and supplies medicines to the countries where it is working through its three European Supply Centers based in Europe.

“The different potential roles of the pharmacists in MSF are quite diverse and on many different levels.” What is the role of pharmacists in the structure of MSF? The different potential roles of the pharmacists in MSF are quite diverse and on many different levels. At the headquarters, within the five operational


sections (France, Belgium, Spain, Holland and Switzerland), there is a section of pharmacists responsible for securing drug procurement and providing support to the field. In the three supply centres, pharmacists assume the legal responsibility towards their National Drug Regulatory Authorities and the compliance to the Good Distribution Practices. They evaluate the quality of the medicines supplied to the missions through participation in GMP audits and evaluation of product dossiers. MSF also has a campaign for access to essential medicines. Here pharmacists contribute to the advocacy activities of the Access Campaign, provide support to MSF for pharmaceutical access related issues and identify potential sources of supply. Moreover, there are also disease focused pharmacists who prepare overview on specific diseases (HIV, Tuberculosis, Malaria and neglected tropical diseases). At a country level, pharmacists are in contact with the National Drug Regulatory Authority and deal with medicine importation. On field missions, the people managing the stock, the use of the medicines and coming in direct contact with patients are also pharmacists! Finally, there is the international pharmacist coordinator who coordinates the work of the pharmaceutical network and is in charge of the quality assurance of the medicines supplied by MSF to the patients that MSF treat.

What defines the work of pharmacists special from the humanitarian point of view? Pharmacists are part of the public health system and come in direct contact with society. Thus the role of a pharmacist in developing countries is very similar to the one in developed countries, but the needs are different. This is what is making the work in humanitarian context very challenging but at the same time very interesting.

In any country a student pharmacist can also provide technical support of already existing public health systems and contribute to strengthen them and therefore contributing to sustainability. For example they can give trainings on rational medicine use or on medicine forecasting. One of the challenges of such work is to apply knowledge to the reality of the country the pharmacist is working in. Acknowledgement to Carole zen Ruffinen

What can you recommend students interested in using their pharmaceutical skills in their job do to serve humanitarian purposes?

Interview conducted by Monica Luca EPSA Social Services and Public Health Coordinator

Pharmacists interested in humanitarian work should look at specific trainings about public health issues (tropical medicines, humanitarian aspects of developing countries, rational medicine management/use).

What do you think pharmacy students can influence through their actions to truly impact society? From their home country, pharmacy students can always have a direct implication and impact by following the campaigning actions of the MSF Access Campaign through the petitions that are sometimes done.



Events page See what’s coming up the next months March 25th DIA Euromeeting

Period: 04/03-06/03 Location: Amsterdam, The Netherlands Homepage: Contact person:

18th EAHP Congress

Period: 13/03-15/03 Location: Paris, France Homepage: Contact person:


PharmaSki event

Period: 08/03-10/03 Location: Kanin, Slovenia Price: app. 100 € Included in the price: Breakfast, dinner, drinks in the evening at parties ;) and sleeping at the ALP hotel, directly by the ski-track.+ of course the ticket for skiing. Parties: There are two parties planned each evening at the hall in the hotel. :) The theme is yet unknown. Application: The period of application will open during February. Contact person: Eva,

Period: 15/03-17/03 Location: Hamburg, Germany Homepage: Contact person: Congress language: German

Rencontres Pharma d’Hiver | Pharma Students Winter meeting Period: 23/03-30/03 Location: Chamrousse, France Homepage: Contact person: Lucas,


April COSMOPHARMA | AISFA congress Period: 19/04-21/04 2013 Location: Bologna, Italy Event: AISFA congress and Cosmofarma exhibition. Contact person: Giulia, Homepage:


World Healthcare Student Symposium Period: 08/09–13/09 Location: Lausanne, Switzerland Application: starting the 1st of April Contact person: 5th Parkinson’s Disease Summer school Period: 16/09–25/09 Location: Montréal, Canada Homepage: Contact person: Krzysztof,

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EPSA Executive Contacts EPSA President Pedro Barroca

EPSA VP of Public Relations Miloš Stojković

EPSA VP of Education Tiia Metiäinen

EPSA VP of External Affairs Guilherme Monteiro Ferreira

EPSA Secretary General David Preece

EPSA Office Rue du Luxembourg 19-21, 1000 Bruxelles, BELGIUM

EPSA Treasurer Roberto Barros

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