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Medicine Awareness Campaign

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Issue #2 - January 2013

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general section

Ms. Hager Ben Mosbah

content General Section

Page 4

Diabetes and Healthy Living Page 14

Page 18

Anti Tuberculosis Page 26

Anti Counterfiet Drugs Page 38

Anti Tobacco Page 48

Humanitarian Page 56

Medicine Awareness Page 70

Breast Cancer Page 76

Issue #2, January 2013

Design & Layout

Ms.IPSFAlexandra Marques Chairperson of Media and Publications Cover photo

Ms. Alexandra Marques Proofread by Ms. Yuqian Liu [Editor-in-Chief] Ms. Neo E-on Ms. Hannah Svedlung Mr. Jason Hong


Dear IPSFer, I am very proud to present you the second “PUBLIC HEALTH SPOT” issue.


Chairperson of Media and Publications


IPSF Public Health Chairperson says

This magazine started last year. Since each IPSF’s Public Health campaign had its own newsletter and the public Health subcommittee issued around 12 newsletters each year, we decided to reunite all of them under the same shelter as the “PUBLIC HEALTH SPOT”. We owe this nice idea to the immediate past Chairperson of Media and Publications Ms.Ines Harzallah and and the immediate past chairperson of Public Health Ms. Christine Cooper. Dear IPSFers, you should also know that you are the Heart of this magazine: each one of you who is preparing a campaign, designing posters and mottos, counselling patients or random people, distributing brochures, giving out condoms, offering free measurements for sugar blood pressure, warning about the risks of smoking, giving for charity, all of you are making a different. Every IPSF’er who is willing to make a change, we want to hear your stories and share them with the world! So please, keep sending us your reports and articles! This year our No.1 motto is INNOVATION! We are working to bring new ideas, new projects, prioritizing creativity and finding new and better means to reach for the public and communicate our message. All of the coordinators and Public Health subcommittees gathered their efforts and spent a lot of time working hard to make this issue as rich and inspiring as you are about to discover. In conclusion, WELCOME to our Spot ! We wish you a good reading and hope you will get inspired by what IPSF’ers are accomplishing around the globe. VIVA La Pharmacie VIVA IPSF

Public Health Spot




Public Health Sub-Committee members answer:

Why is Public Health important to you?

“Public Health is very important because a healthy community reflects a sense of mental and physical well being and is the foundation for achieving all other goals. Good health is often taken for granted but is essential for a productive society. For example,healthier students are more equipped to learn and be successful academically ...” Zakaria

“ Public health for me is about helping others and spreading the high spirit you have to other people. I am always touched whenever people smile because of what you’ve done for them especially when it’s about maintaining or curing their health. That triggers me to contribute more to the society.” Anggie

“Public health to me is an opportunity to help others and learn about others health and culture. It also can include sharing and telling of knowledge and education regarding health and disease-states which ultimately improves people’s health outcomes.” Stephanie 2

Public Health Spot

“One of my very favorite things to do in life is talk to people, which works great for public health. Public health to me is where the real changes are made. When you work with people, you have a chance to make improvements. And who couldn’t use a little improvement in their life?” Christine

“Public health is important to me because it is a way for one to use their training and knowledge to positively impact other’s lives. What most appeals to me about this is that our message can transcend cultures, educational backgrounds, etc; It can impact everyone.” Alana

“I l becau glob to p goo takin

love public health use I think in todays’ bal world, best way promote health and od quality of life is ng care of the health of our society.” Lina

“ What I mostly like about PH, is that it’s 1.Public (have the chance to reach out to SO many people, help them AND interact) and 2.Health (there is absolutely nothing more important than one’s health, then other things can be solved!)” Janet

“ I love helping people and seeing them smile. That pushes me to contribute more to the society and try to improve public health worldwide” Ines

general section

“I love IPSF and its impact it makes on the community through public education, which is why I chose to work for the PH subcommittee. As a pharmacist and as a student pharmacist I want to share all of the information I learned and I feel the best way is through Public Health Initiatives that IPSF promotes. I want to be on the front line to promote Public Health ideas and share them with patients, which is why I am excited to share all of my ideas and to hear from other student pharmacists all over the world how they make a difference in patient’s life!” Sheena

“Public health combats threats to health by implementing educational programs, developing policies, administering services, and conducting research. Working in public health is to promote and protect the health and safety of people including you.” Méthode

“I love public health because I believe giving accurate health information to the public will help them make informed decisions about their health and prevent some common ailment as illiteracy is a form of disease in this dispensation.” Emmanuel

“Public health is vital because it is becoming more and more difficult for countries to deal with the everincreasing cost in the health sector. Thus healthier population would mean the countries can run more efficiently and deal with other important issues (education, city planning, social welfare, economic problems, immigration) that also increases the overall quality of life for their citizens.” Amber

Public Health Spot


Ms. Sheena Patel shares:

Experience in Public Health Sub-Committee “IPSF, International Pharmaceutical Students Federation, four little letters that changed my perspective on pharmacy and the way I will practice pharmacy in the future.

Through this position I was able to expand the role of IPSF at Wilkes University and in the community. In November and December I organized three events around the time of World AIDS Day. The first event was hosted by student pharmacists and members from the Gay-Straight Alliance group at Wilkes University. The events were a Jeopardy game, educational session, and a friendly competition between six pharmacy schools to raise the most money for the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation in America.

Every month, I planned two educational events on Diabetes and Tobacco Abuse at local pharmacies in Wilkes Barre, where over 100 patients were educated on these two problems. The final project that I started and will continue to implement is Pharmabridge. Through IPSF’s Pharmabridge I worked with a Wilkes University Pharmacy professor who helped me locate a pharmacy school in need of pharmacy textbooks. We found Makerere University in Uganda, Africa. I first began my pharmacy profession as a bright Last year, I collected over 100 pharmacy textbooks eyed student ready to learn about everything and I raised money through my Zumba Class relating to diseases and medications. When I Fundraiser to send one shipment of books to became a second year student pharmacist I Makerere Univeristy’s non-existent library. This was appointed IPSF Liaison at Wilkes University year, we were able to send over 30 textbooks to through the American Pharmacist Association – students at Makerere University. I am working with Academy of Student Pharmacists. 4

Public Health Spot

general section the current IPSF Chair and co-chair to ship more I have learned that my educational sessions do textbooks to the school as soon as we can. make a difference even if it is in just one patient. Helping that one patient their disease will improve These experiences led me to apply for IPSF care for the patient, and hopefully extend their lifePublic Health Subcommittee, which I currently span. It makes me happy to know that what I do hold for this year. Through this position I have as a member of IPSF’s Public Health Subcommittee worked closely with student pharmacists all over does make a difference. I can make handouts that the world on a variety of health initiatives including are simple and easy for patients to understand, Diabetes, HIV/AIDS, and anti-counterfeit campaign. which will allow them to learn how to manage their I enjoy working with other people with different disease and help improve their outcomes, which backgrounds and experience. When they share in my mind is the best thing in the world: to know their stories about what they have accomplished I that you made a difference for a patient and you am amazed at how much of an impact one event were able to help someone live longer. That in itself can make. I love sharing my experiences with is a powerful thought. other student pharmacists and also collaborating on ideas for a campaign or project within IPSF. For Overall, I am glad that I am a member of IPSF example, for the anti-counterfeit campaign, I was especially a member of the Public Health team. I able to talk to an IPSFer in another country about the have learned so much and I hope my experience same issues we face in America and to strategize on how to combat this problem. Working with these members has been a truly amazing experience and I would recommend anyone who is interested in IPSF or in applying for an IPSF position to go for it. Once you join the organization, you will never look at pharmacy the same way.

will encourage other student pharmacists to join IPSF and make a difference in patient care and a patient’s life because trust me when I say you will change for the better through IPSF as a pharmacist and also as a caregiver for patients in your area and all over the world.”

I know I have changed because of this experience. This organization will not only enhance the way I practice pharmacy, but how I impact my patients.

Public Health Spot



Public Health Spot

general section

Mr. Wei- 65th World Health Hua, CHU Assembly (WHA) attended: Geneva, Switzerland My name is Wei-Hua, CHU (Henry), Chairperson of the 11th Asia Pacific Pharmaceutical Symposium. This year I get the once in a blue moon chance to go to the 65th World Health Assembly (WHA) in Geneva, Switzerland. Why would I say that it is a “once in a blue moon chance” ? It is because I come from Taiwan, where there are many complicated political issues that l can not express them in a short story. Taiwan is not accepted as a country neither a region in the international world, since People Republic of China defeats Republic of China (Taiwan) in 1949, and Republic of China retreat to Taiwan. After that, Taiwan is one of the most difficult issues in the world, and we can not go to World Health Organization (WHO) until 2009.Therefore, I have to show my tremendous appreciation to International Pharmaceutical Students’ Federation (IPSF) for giving me the chance to go to WHA. The theme of the 65th WHA is “Towards Universal Coverage”. This topic aims to provide health services and wish to include everyone in this service no matter regardless wealthy or poor. You can see a lot of humanity issues in the WHA. WHA includes 194 member states , 7 observers and a lot of Non Government Organizations (NGO) related with WHO such as IPSF. There are numerous people from all over the world, but seldom do I see the Asians joining it. Therefore, I aspire more Asian students to struggle for the chance to go to WHA in the future.

IPSF does not only spectate but also join actively in the WHA, since NGOs have the right to make a 3 minutes speech to convey their opinions. Sanne, IPSF president 2011-2012 spoke about the topic of “counterfeit drug” which is was discussed with IPSF executives during the whole night. It was a wonderful chance to make all of countries to know what is IPSF and what can IPSF do.

The most unforgettable thing is that l have acquainted many tremendously good friends from IPSF namely Marouen, Sharif Siam, Michael and so on. We conveyed our own opinions and we had fun together. Therefore, the last but not least which I want to say is that “I love IPSF”

Public Health Spot



Public Health Spot

Geneva, Switzerland

Public Health Spot


general section

65th World Health Assembly (WHA)

Mr. Vikesh Kakad and Ms. Oksana Pyzik report:

65th World Health Assembly (WHA) Geneva, Switzerland

We were among the health ministers, healthcare

the influenza pandemic, and so on. However, her

professionals and leaders, and non-governmental

key message was that, to tackle health problems

organisations who gathered at the 65th session of

efficiently and effectively, we must attack with simple

the World Health Assembly (WHA) at the United

and affordable tactics that will reach and benefit

Nations headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland.

the greatest number of people possible. We must

The World Health Organization is the world’s

get back to basics. “The true genius of innovation

highest health policy-setting body, composed and

resides in simplicity, making usability and affordable

governed by 194 member states. The WHO provides

price explicit objectives,” Dr Chan.

public health guidelines and standards, monitors

WHO reform

health trends, issues evidence-based policy options

Heated discussions emerged surrounding the

for governments and provides technical support to

controversial WHO reform aimed at budget and


priority setting. The crippling financial crisis has

The health assembly meets annually to decide

drained resources and led to heavy staff losses.

on major policy questions, as well as to approve the

With such brutal budget cuts organisations such as

organisation’s budget and elect its director general.

Oxfam, among others, question the WHO’s ability

This year’s 65th assembly opened with a focus on

to deliver its essential core functions. Currently,

universal health coverage, a theme that was often

only 10 per cent of the budget is allocated towards

revisited throughout the week and which drew

quality assurance guidance for the development,

strong support from member states.

production, quality control, regulation, inspection

On day one, WHO director general Margaret Chan

and distribution of medical products. Member states

was re-elected with a clean sweep for another five

warned that budget cuts affecting core functions

years. She said: “Universal health coverage is the

would come at too high a price and called for greater

ultimate expression of fairness, between rich and

funding to protect the integrity of medicines in

poor, young and old, women and men. Universal

accordance with the WHO’s constitution and global

health coverage is the single most powerful concept


that public health has to offer.”

Falsified medicines

In her opening address Dr Chan continued to

In response to the breaking news on falsified

applaud health achievements from around the

medicines recently published by The Lancet, the

globe: India, eradication of polio with government


ownership; Canada, promotion of gender equity

International Pharmaceutical Students’ Federation

and human rights; Indonesia, preparedness for

delegates drafted a resolution. A new member

10 Public Health Spot





clinical commissioning groups, the BPSA sees it vital

p r o p o s i n g

that pharmacists increase their involvement with GPs


and other health professionals.


operation on item


13.13 of the agenda

The WHA also serves as a platform to expand


professional and student networks and the contacts



built by the BPSA will be indispensible. Students, take



note: many organisations provide summer internships


and the BPSA is working towards creating strong and


lasting partnerships for our members. Next year, the

products — which

BPSA hopes to increase the number of members

went on to the full

present at the WHA and work more closely with the

or (SSFFC)

plenary where it passed without opposition. The IPSF

Royal Pharmaceutical Society to achieve this goal.

advocated to the executive board and WHO member

It was noted as a whole that pharmacy organisations

state representatives for solid regulatory systems to be

and pharmacists were a minority and vastly under-

coupled with appropriate enforcement by authorities

represented. There is plenty of potential for our

in order to maintain integrity of the drug supply chain.

profession to play a greater role in the leadership of

Pharmacists are drug experts and thus should be

public health topics and issues on an international

key players in maximising awareness and minimising

scale. Pharmacists are key health professionals yet

distribution of SSFFC products. Member states urged

many do not take on an active part in the decision-

the WHO to develop and work with regional and

making process. We, however, as young pharmacists

international networks between regulators, such as the

are eager to have our voices heard and call on readers

European Medicines Agency. Previous efforts by the

to engage and to take political action.

WHO to control SSFFC products via the International Medical Products Anti-Counterfeiting Taskforce were deemed to be biased, leading to the dismantling of the taskforce. Multidisciplinary working It is British Pharmaceutical Students’ Association policy to work more closely with medical and nursing student organisations, with the aim of producing a single and strong healthcare workforce. Therefore, we asked Christopher Pleyer, president of International

Attending the WHA was a dream come true. Not only did we witness history in the making but we met our “idols” and are now more than ever are inspired to do more and to create a better, healthier world and, of course, to share what we have learnt with readers.

Federation of Medical Students’ Association (IFMSA),

Oksana Pyzik is an academic and research pharmacist

on its views for using multidisciplinary education and

for the International Pharmacy Federation, European

training to develop the future of multidisciplinary

Law Students’ Association and the International


Pharmaceutical Students’ Federation. Vikesh Kakad is

He replied that it is already working closely with

president elect of the British Pharmaceutical Students’

the IPSF under the World Heath Professional Alliance

Association (BPSA) and preregistration trainee at Day

and that he sees health professionals, including

Lewis Plc.

pharmacists, working closely together in the future.

Source: Tomorrow’s Pharmacist 2012

With the current reforms of the NHS and incoming Public Health Spot 11

general section


12 Public Health Spot

Public Health Spot 13

Diabetes and Healthy Living Campaign

ublic Heal th Pu Publ b i l c i H ublic ealth c Health Heal P u blic H th Pu ublic ealth blic H Heal th Pu ealth Heal blic H th Pu ealth ealth blic H Publ e a lth ic He ic He 14 Public Health Spot

IPSF Diabetes and Healthy Living Campaign Co-Ordinator Dear fellow IPSF’ers all around the world!

Or did you happen to know, that even if you don’t go to the gym every day, if you could maybe take the

This year, not so long ago, as you may all know, on

stairs instead of the elevator, and go to the store by

November the 14th , the 21st World Diabetes Day was

foot instead of taking your car- all that already helps


to improve your well being?

This year IPSF wanted to emphasize the healthy

There is a lot of information out there that the

living way of life as a preventive measurement taken

general public is simply unaware of, it is our duty to

against diabetes and other non-communicable

mentor and show them how simple it is to make these


much needed changes in different aspects of our

Healthy diet, physical activity and a life free of stress

lives. At first it could be hard to adjust but with a new

or at least stress we know how to manage- are the

mindset you get used to it and it turns into a new way

pillars of this year’s campaign.

of life.

IPSF strives to show you students, health

So let’s change the world, it is possible, but the

professionals and the general public, how simple it is to

change starts from every one of us, so start walking

maintain a healthier lifestyle which helps prevent the

30 min a day 3 times a week and the rest of the world

spread of modern life pandemic- non communicable

will follow ;)

diseases among which diabetes takes on a big role. A healthier lifestyle can also help the people who


already suffers from heart conditions, diabetes or


other illnesses. It reduces long term organ damage

and mortality. You- as pharmacy students have the ability to conflict change among our societies and teach people, starting with kids as early as in elementary school – how to eat properly so as to avoid obesity, how physical activity could be a way of life and not something you simply don’t have time for during the day, and how stress really is a negative factor in everybody’s lives. Did you know that 20 min of meditation per day can make you more focused, relaxed, reduce your BP and blood glucose levels?

Public Health Spot 15

Diabetes and Healthy Living Campaign

Ms. Lina Heled

10.000keep steps per day


ealth lth blic H ea lth Pu Public H h a e H h c lt lt li a a e b e u H H P c lic Publi alth Pub lic Health e b H u c P li Pub c Health lic Health Publi alth Pub Health lic ealth c He Publi ealth Pub Public H lth cH a li e b H u c P Publi


16 Public Health Spot

more info:

HIV / AIDS Awareness Campaign

ublic Heal th Pu Publ blic H ic He ealth blic H alth P e u a l t ublic h Pub blic He a Heal l l i t c h H t ealth h Pub Heal th Pu lic He ealth blic H alth Publ e a lth ic He ic He a 18 Public Health Spot

IPSF HIV / AIDS Awareness Campaign Co-Ordinator

Dearest IPSFers,

of December, please remember that HIV/AIDS are not only an issue on this day, but throughout the whole

December 1st, 2012 marked the 24th World AIDS

year. It is very important to support the campaign

Day. Since its first celebration in 1988, the World AIDS

during the whole year. Only then can we each out “get

Day has brought together people around the world to

to Zero” goal.

raise awareness about the HIV and AIDS pandemic.

HIV / AIDS awareness campaign

Mr. Mohan Shrestha

Hope that you all will have a great campaign at your

The goal of IPSF HIV/AIDS Awareness for the World

place and don’t forget to share it with us at hivaids@

AIDS Day 2012 was to meet the theme “Getting to to IPSF HIV/AIDS Awareness Coordinator or

Zero: Zero new HIV infections. Zero discrimination. to IPSF Chairperson of Public

Zero AIDS related deaths”. For 2011-2015, WHO


World AIDS Day will have the same theme and so

Lastly, being involved as an IPSF HIV/AIDS

we are continuing the red ribbon project this year as

Awareness Coordinator had given me the opportunity

well. Through the level of pharmacy students and the

to collaborate with wonderful people around the

pharmacy profession, we must contribute to meet

world and to make a difference together. Thank you!

the theme. By the combined effort of Chairperson of Public health, Chairperson of Media and Publication

Viva la Pharmacie!

and the IPSF Public health Sub-committee, HIV/ AIDS Awareness Campaign Kit was prepared to meet the goal. We hope that this kit has been a valuable resource for IPSF member organizations in creating your own HIV/AIDS Awareness campaign. If you and your local organizations/associations were not able to put together a campaign on the first

Public Health Spot 19

h Healt a c i l b e lth Pu Public H h a e H c lt th Publi blic Heal ublic Hea l a u P P alth Public He e H c Publi ic Health lic Health Publ alth Pub Health lic e c He Publi ealth Pub Public H h H t l c a Publi ublic He P




Responsibility 20 Public Health Spot

Pharmacists against HIV / AIDS

did you know...

HIV / AIDS awareness campaign

Mr. Mohan Shrestha writes about:

• HIV/AIDS is the world’s leading infectious killer • HIV/AIDS currently affects about 31 million people worldwide • About 30 million people have died to date • An estimated 1.8 million people die every year from HIV/AIDS • Over 90% of people with HIV were infected through sexual contact • Sub-Saharan Africa remains the most heavily affected region, accounting for 71% of all new HIV infections in 2008 • 14.1 million Children in sub-Saharan Africa have lost one or both parents due to AIDS • More than 400,000 children are infected with HIV or AIDS every year • In countries of the European Union and other high-income countries the resurgence of the epidemic among men who have sex with men is increasingly well-documented • The risk of developing tuberculosis (TB) is estimated to be between 20-37 times greater in people living with HIV than among those without HIV infection

Public Health Spot 21

Scenario of HIV / AIDS globally:

Source: Worldwide HIV & AIDS Statistics Available at:

Why pharmacists? As pharmacy students and young pharmacist,

compliance, adverse events and lifestyle behaviors.

we are in the position to help other get a better

These data would be provided to other team members

understanding of how the disease spread, the

in real-time to create a coordinated management plan.

importance of the prevention, available therapies,

The pharmacist would also act as a community

where patients can get help.

resource for information on HIV/AIDS to help dispel

Many infected people do not receive proper care

myths and misinformation about the disease.

because of a lack of resources or education about

They can be a provider of testing services and

current treatment options. Even where treatments

counselling, as well as preventative methods and

are available, they are often not optimal because of

information. Hospital pharmacist plays the vital role

poor adherence, adverse events or resistance. Disease

for these activities.

management concepts are being adapted to this

By educating more and more people, we can

disease, but are not yet fully successful because of the

also draw attention to the devastating effects of

lack of definitive guidelines and lack of adherence to

stigmatization. For educating campaigning idea

the therapy. A potential model uses a community care

will be another part by us students. The community

centre (community pharmacy), as the focal point for

pharmacy and hospital pharmacy sector to be handled

care delivery with other healthcare professionals will

by the young pharmacist in collaboration with the

change the scenario.

senior pharmacist and other health care professional

Pharmacist would collect and report data on medication


22 Public Health Spot




in the team.

Campaign ideas: same. • Organize a marathon in which students wear white T-shirts and red ribbon • Organize a condom exhibition at the university hall to draw attention to the campaign and to educate the people about the safe sex • Arrange a seminar with experts in the school and pharmacy faculties to share knowledge and newer developments in the drug therapy • Set up a booth with campaign materials- pamphlets, flyers, leaflets, brochures, posters and guidelines of the HIV/AIDS treatment to the public people in the shopping malls, hospital areas and public places • Hang HIV/AIDS campaign pictures/posters in the public places • Special emphasis should be given to the HIV positive patients for carrying out the workshop about HIV/ AIDS awareness focused on the point of view of the patient • Organize charity events such as concerts and auction • Start an educational program for non-pharmacy

HIV / AIDS awareness campaign

• Wear the red ribbon and encourage others to do the

Campaign goals: • Improving the public knowledge about the HIV/AIDS • Promoting attitudes and practices that prevent the transmission of HIV • Building up skills as pharmacy students and graduates that help to develop greater understanding and knowledge of HIV/AIDS • Promoting

the pharmacists’ role as a

key member of the health care team in improving the lives of those with HIV/ AIDS • Encourage students to go out into the community and make contact with patients, thereby cultivating skills and experience that will make them better practitioners throughout their career. • Providing





students and organize activities all around the year

importance of the contraceptives to the

by means of school speaking program or community

young generation

awareness services • Collaborate with other local or national health organizations

Public Health Spot 23


Kenyatta University Students’ Aids Control Organization (KUSACO)


24 Public Health Spot

Croatian Pharmacy and Medical Biochemistry Students Association (CPSA)

HIV / AIDS awareness campaign

Nepal Nepal Pharmacy Students’ society (NPSS), a local organization of NPSA


Indian Pharmaceutical Association Students’ Forum in association with St.Peters Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Warangal, Andhra Pradesh.

Public Health Spot 25

Anti Tuberculosis Campaign

ublic Heal th Pu Publ blic H ic He ealth blic H alth P e u a blic H l th Pu ublic ealth blic H Heal th Pu ealth Heal blic H th Pu ealth ealth blic H Publ e a l t h i c ic He H ealth alt

Ms. Anggie Wiyani

Dear beloved IPSFers,

medicine responsibly. Our contribution in reducing those numbers in the fact sheets can be done from a

Tuberculosis is a worldwide disease with a large

small few steps. Revealing the myth and facts about

number of people, in which the statistics show 8.8

TB is one of the most feasible action we can do to

million in 2010, and 1.1 million cases among people

the people near us. In larger scale, collaboration

with HIV. Nevertheless, the number of people who

with other pharmacy students or even pharmacists

died from TB fell to 1.4 million in 2010, equal to

and other healthcare professionals may give a

3800 deaths a day.

bigger impact to the society. Being a member of our IPSF, we must lead the

The World Tuberculosis Day, commemorated annually on the 24th of March, marks the day in

others to promote public health. It’s never too late to act, or never too small.

1882 when Dr. Robert Koch detected the cause of tuberculosis, the TB bacillus. This was the first step

For the TB campaign next year, there will be a

taken in diagnosing and curing tuberculosis. One

new contest which is a Twitter competition, so be

hundred and thirty years has passed, and now the

ready and start signing up for a Twitter account

future is in our hands. Healthcare professionals and

now :D

organisations work hand in hand to increase the quality of medication and also to propose a solution

Viva la Pharmacie!

regarding Multiple drug-resistant Tuberculosis (MDR-TB) that has been an issue for several years. As a future pharmacist, we have to be aware of issues regarding this worldwide disease, as since our profession stands as the public’s partner in taking

Public Health Spot 27

Anti Tuberculosis Campaign

IPSF Anti Tuberculosis Campaign Co-Ordinator

Highlights 1.

100 Percent TB Treatment Strategy Achieved According to official sources, the Pakistani government has achieved 100 percent coverage with the DOTS (directly observed treatment, short course) strategy recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) for the detection and cure of TB within the country, resulting in the treatment—without cost—of more than 700,000 TB patients. According to these sources, approximately 982 microscopy centers throughout the

country now provide free diagnostics to TB patients. In addition, 40 districts in Pakistan have implemented external quality assurance for sputum microscopy. Pakistan also has five reference laboratories, including one at the federal level and the rest at the provincial level. Pakistan’s annual incidence of TB is 181 cases per 100,000, and case notification is 150 per 100,000. Pakistan’s treatment success rate for TB is 85 percent.

blic H ealth Publ P ic He ublic He blic H alth P alth ealth ublic blic H Publ H e alth ic He ealth a Heal P l t u b th Pu lic He h blic H alth alth P ea u 28 Public Health Spot


S Agency for the International Development (USAID) Mission Director for Ukraine, Belarus and Moldova Jed Barton reports a new 5-year project for the reinforcement of control over tuberculosis (TB) in the Ukraine worth $18 million. The new aid package, intended to assist with the control of TB, will improve the quality of service to diagnose and treat TB using short-term treatment courses through the introduction of the project to 10 regions in the Ukraine with the goal of increasing successful case treatment in the country to the global target of 85 percent. To achieve this, the project intends to undertake several improvements, including creating safe conditions for patients and medical staff, improving access to medical diagnostics through the improvement of laboratories, and following strict treatment regimes.

GSK and Aeras to Test Vaccine in Africa, India In Africa and India, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Aeras, a nonprofit biotechnology group, will work together to assess an experimental tuberculosis (TB) vaccine in “proof of concept� tests. The partners plan to start a mid-stage Phase IIb clinical study in Kenya, South Africa, and India in 2013, after successful initial tests with the GSK product, Aeras said on October 10. TB is spreading in spite of the widespread use of the currently available TB vaccine Bacille CalmetteGuerin (BCG), which prevents

some forms of TB. BCG, however, does not prevent pulmonary TB, which accounts for the majority of infections and deaths. The new GSKAeras vaccine candidate is intended to be used together with BCG. Aeras and GSK will conduct the clinical trial in healthy adults aged 18 to 50 years old. Both partners will provide resources for the trial, which is scheduled to start in 2013, pending approvals from authorities. Source:

Public Health Spot 29

Anti Tuberculosis Campaign


USAID Allocates $18 Million for New 5-Year AntiTuberculosis Project in Ukraine

Our actions to combat the spread of TB? There are many things we can do to combat the

Even after somebody got infected with TB, they

Tuberculosis spread in our environment. Firstly,

are not easily caught the disease afterwards. The

we have to know how the Tuberculosis is actually

detection for TB disease can only be done if they

spread. There are false rumors and myths running

have done the TB test, such as skin test or blood

around in public about how Tuberculosis spread

test. There will be a higher chance of getting TB

and how people can get infected. As a pharmacy

disease if they have HIV infection, or have other

student who has learned about this disease in

health problems (e.g diabetes) that makes the body

school, we can educate our nearest people about

hard to fight germs, such as alcohol abuser or inject

this issue – and even better, go out to the public

illegal drug addicts , and were not treated correctly

and speak loud about this matter.

for TB infection in the past. Babies, young children, and elderly people also have a much higher chance

We can tell them that people can not get TB germs from sharing drinking bottles or eating utensils,

of getting TB disease if infected with TB germs, prior to their weak body defense compared to adults.

shaking someone’s hands, sharing food, touching bed linens or toilet seats, or sharing toothbrushes.

We must pass this facts straight to public, to encounter their confusion regarding how

TB is spread through the air from one person to another. The TB germs are passed through the air when a person who is sick with TB disease coughs, laughs, sings, or sneezes. If someone breathes air that has TB germs, that person may get TB infection. This means they have only dormant (sleeping) TB germs in their body. These dormant germs are not making them sick, and they cannot pass these germs to anyone else. If these dormant TB germs in their body wake up and multiply, they will get sick with TB disease.

Tuberculosis spread and how will they got infected, or got the disease.

Care for the people near us, and care for the world. Better education, better health. Source:

30 Public Health Spot

Public Health Spot 31

To commemorate the World Tuberculosis Day 2012, this year IPSF Tuberculosis Coordinator held a contest among IPSF members. It’s the Green Lung picture contest! Association needs to gather their member and then wear green clothes to form a human green

32 Public Health Spot

TB Pic Cont 201

cture test 12

lung. This year we have some nice pictures coming in, and based on votes by CPs all around the world, we proudly announce the winner of TB Picture Contest 2012 is AphA-ASP USA! You can see their amazing picture here, congratulations and we are looking for more green lungs next year so make sure to send in your pictures!

Public Health Spot 33

34 Public Health Spot

World Health Organization

Global Tuberculosis Report 2012 New data in the WHO Global Tuberculosis Report

resistant disease, is now available in 67 low- and

2012 confirm that TB remains a major infectious killer

middle-income countries. Adoption of the ‘while you

today. The findings show:

wait’ test is expected to further accelerate following a

• A continued decline in the number of people falling ill from TB, but still an enormous global burden of 8.7 million new cases in 2011;

The report also points to the promise of medical breakthroughs from new TB drugs – the first in over

• An estimated 1.4 million deaths from TB, including

40 years – which could be on the market as early as

half a million women, underlining the disease as one

2013. Indeed, tools to prevent, detect and treat all

of the world’s top killers of women;

forms of TB are steadily advancing through the R&D

• Reduced rates of new disease and deaths in all of

pipeline, says the report.

WHO’s six regions, although the African and European Regions are not yet on track to achieve goals to halve 1990 levels of mortality by 2015; • A persistently slow progress in the MDR-TB

Further down the line, progress means that a new TB vaccine and a ‘point-of-care’ diagnostic could be available within the next decade.

response, with only 1 in 5 patients estimated to exist being diagnosed world-wide.

But delivering new tools comes at a cost – and the report notes that there is a US$ 1.4 billion funding

The report also highlights country successes –

gap per year for research and development.

among them Cambodia which has seen a 45% drop in TB prevalence between 2002 and 2011 – and, in all,

So it definitely needs contribution and participation

it features data from 204 countries and territories and

from us, pharmacy students all over the world to

covers all aspects of TB, including multidrug-resistant

combat TB! There are many activities and programmes

TB (MDR-TB), TB/HIV, research and development

that we can do to fight against TB, first thing you can

(R&D) and TB financing.

search contact of local or national organisation that works in this area, then collaborating with them to

There is praise in the report for the worldwide rollout of a new diagnostic device that can test patients

run an event or maybe participate in one of their programs. Happy campaigning!

for TB, including drug-resistant TB, in just 100 minutes. The fully automated nucleic acid amplification test

Source: Stop TB Partnership News

(NAAT), which can diagnose TB and rifampicin-

Public Health Spot 35

Anti Tuberculosis Campaign

recent 41% fall in the price of the test.

36 Public Health Spot

Public Health Spot 37

Anti Tuberculosis Campaign

Anti Counterfeit Drugs Campaign

ublic Heal th Pu Publ blic H ic He ealth blic H alth P e u a blic H l th Pu ublic ealth blic H Heal th Pu ealth Heal blic H th Pu ealth ealth blic H Publ e a l t h i c ic He H ealth alt

Ms. Wala Abd Elrhman

Anti Counterfeit Drugs Campaign Co-ordinators

First of all, I would like to express how honored

Through this newsletter you will find our new

and proud I am that I can work for IPSF as the ACDC

projects for this year , which will cover recently

Coordinator which in my opinion is such an important

developed devices to detect counterfeit medicine , a

position. I am really enjoying my term and I hope I will

short introduction about 2012-2013 ACDC team and

be useful for my beloved Federation . I am really happy

the reports of ACDC from last year .

that I had an opportunity to communicate with most of you during my term last year as member in ACDC team and that my ideas were always supported .

If you have any question related to my portfolio or any help with your campaign you are more than welcome to email me on . Or

Actually counterfeit medicine is one of the arising global problems, and as we are student

visit our website for further information .

from the medical field we have a role to do in order to eradicate this phenomena, to save people lives

Working for IPSF means a lot of additional work

and get out world with at least as possible aware

apart from your studies or apart from your normal

pharmacy student who able to distinguish between

work. Still it is definitely worth the additional work,

fake and real medicine . When this part was included

and I would recommend everyone who would like to

into IPSF public health , I was really excited to get

learn from other cultures, from pharmacy students all

an opportunity to work with in , and now I get it . I

around the globe, to take a position in IPSF and enjoy

will take this opportunity to ask all of you to spread

the IPSF spirit!

the word all around the globe , communicate with each other and start campaigning . As April will be the month of fighting against counterfeit medicine , please be ready for our huge campaign .

Public Health Spot 39

Anti Counterfeit Drugs Campaign

Dear IPSFers ,

Inside of World Health Organization

Mr. Dusan Jasovsky Current situation in reports:

Falsified Medicines issue

The building of the World Health Organization

of cases of falsified medicinal products either on

towers over all the other UN institutions in the

national or international level, involving failure of

common large park on a small hill symbolically

individuals, corruption and parasitized fraudulent

indicating health as a top priority for the

business fueled by the human hope and desire for

contemporary man, on which can then be built. The

health. Falsified medicine represents with its non-

atmosphere resembles a rather vibrant academic

exact content and therefore unpredictable safety

anthill than strict political vacuum, rather a forum for

profile the acute and even chronic health risks of an

discussion and compromises than blind following


of inoperative mechanisms. Re-elected charismatic

Counterfeit is often hardly distinguishable

Margaret Chan - current WHO Director General -

at first sight, as it is in interest of counterfeiters

is with its subtle figure, spontaneous humor and

that deficiencies will be discovered as late as

effective openness the icebreaker within frozen

possible. The improvised conditions of homemade

discussions. She applies the principles of humanity

laboratories can hardly maintain its GMP. Forgers

and solidarity in the drab world of global health

within developing countries focus on various types

diplomacy. She connects, she’s vigorous, media

of medicines, namely antiviral and antimicrobial

liken her to a ‘public health rock star’. She manages

therapy (i.e. for HIV/AIDS, antimalarial)


developed countries, there is prevalent occurrence




multiculturalism and technical complexity.


of cases with economically interesting counterfeit

Pharmacist plays a key role in this complex process

medicines (i.e. cancer therapy, erectile dysfunction,

providing tools with feature to heal. Pharmaceutical

HIV therapy), but also with lifestyle drugs (i.e.

products, as an extended arm of medicine today,

medicines for weight loss). Exceptionally, there are

are cornerstones in improving the quality of life.

cases where falsified medicine does not contain any

Medicines carrying pharmacological information

pharmacologically active substance (i.e. Avastin -

must therefore meet all quality standards as platform

for cancer therapy; vials contained only microbes-

on which can then safety of the medicines itself be

containing opaque fluid, USA, 2012). Counterfeiters

evaluated. Challenges in global quality assurance of

get into the distribution chain through corruption

medicines – that’s the daily based agenda of WHO

at the distributor or regulator level. Cases where

Medicines Quality Assurance team formed mainly

corrupted pharmacists were involved in direct

by experts from the pharmaceutical environment.

distribution to the pharmacy were also recorded.

Failure to meet the requirements on product

Multi-distribution through several countries with

quality, in most cases, suggests the occurrence

high levels of market security should induce the

40 Public Health Spot

authenticity of the products.

and internet pharmacies without its addresses stated has

Since this problem has exceeded national and

been shown to be fraudulent and threatening the health

regional boundaries, and is now a global threat in

of the patient up to 50%. Alarming is particularly the

ensuring the quality of treatment and in the same time it

liberal attitude of the patients acquiring their medicines

lowers very important patient’s faith in the therapy, the

from uncertain sources, either for economic reasons,

United Nations Member States commit themselves to

respectively they are ashamed to visit their healthcare

establish a new mechanism. However, the difficulties of

professional with some intimate diagnosis. YES, there

the global solution rise from the diversity of the nature

is a place for pharmacists to consult patients’ proactive

of the problem itself, the uneven commitment of the

self-medication efforts and experiments!

Member States devote efforts and resources to regulate the market and elimination of corruption while lacking using the falsified/counterfeited products from dubious sources.



factsheets/fs275/en/index.html The author absolved the internship at WHO

The agenda of 65th World Health Assembly in the

Headquarters in the beginning of the year 2012. The

end of May 2012 delegated by WHO provided a space

author presents his views in the article, which may not be

for discussion about new mechanism improving

equated with those of the aforementioned institutions.

latent IMPACT (International Medical Products AntiCounterfeiting Taskforce), which stagnated due to the lobby of some developing countries in matters of vague interpretation of legislative provisions. Political commitment resulting from the Assembly determined WHO as a key player institution to delegate Member States in each step of combating the counterfeit market while providing technical support in terms of finding suitable alternatives for analysis through i.e. ‘sampling’ the market. The new mechanism thus combines strong political beliefs through which then specific technical solutions can be applied. For this reason, WHO has a team of specialists performing analytic, as well as pharmaceutical and proactive investigative requirements in order to secure medicines market and thus, by its complexity, it covers the needs of both developing and developed countries. WHO statistics inform about critical 9 - 10% global market burden by counterfeits. However, in the EU, this problem occurs only in ten-fold smaller scale which is only 1%. Some countries from Western Europe are targeted mainly because of its extensive markets and due to its strategic geographical position as the transit point for the further distribution of counterfeits. Online Stores Public Health Spot 41

Anti Counterfeit Drugs Campaign

of awareness of the possible fatal consequences of

ASEP reports:

Anti-Counterfeit Drugs Campaign in


The 14th of April we joined the anti-counterfeit

people and were glad to see that most of them don’t

drug campaign. To do this we hired aplace in Zurich

buy drugs on the internet. However several have

downtown to have there an information desk. We

friends who buy their drugs on the internet. Many

started at 11 a.m. and ended at 3 p.m. During this

knew that there is a potent risk on buying the drugs

period we were five people at a time. The campaign

on the internet but what the people were surprised

was a success and it was good to have some flyers

about was that 95 % of all drugs are counterfeit.

in English because there were a lot of tourists which

Just one admit that he bought drugs on the

didn’t understand German so we could gave them

internet and he told us that he became a message

the English ones. The quiz was also ready to be done

from Swiss medic in which was written that the

but it wasn’t that easy to bring the people to the desk

package was repressed and he have to pay the bill

so we preferred to approach to the people and give

for the analytical costs. After that message he just

them a flyer or refreshertowels

was angry because he didn’t understand why and so

which we got from the Pharma Suisse. While giving

he thanked us because he does know now what for

it we started a conversation. We asked the people if

it was. A pleasant thing was that a couple of people

they have bought once drugs online and gave the

told us that it is a good thing informing about such

advice that they should not buy drugs online but

an important theme.

buy drugs in the pharmacy because there one can find a competent consultation. We talked with many

42 Public Health Spot



about the counterfeit drugs, it has allowed students

For our first participation to the anti-counterfeit

to know more about these drugs, the different sorts

drug campaign under the local theme “Counterfeit

of anti counterfeit drugs and the ingredients that

drugs = threatened lives” we have planned to achieve

can be counterfeited. The second one consisted in

some goals:

funny activities such as “balloons activity” or “candy

- Make pharmacy students familiar with the anticounterfeit drugs - Inform pharmacy students about the anticounterfeit drugs: origin, recognition… - Make pharmacy students conscious with the dangers of anti-counterfeit drugs

game”. The third one consisted in “recognition of the counterfeit drugs” by sharing pictures of the original and counterfeit drugs, the teams had to detect the differences. Finally, we proposed to each team to share their ideas and solutions in order to prevent this plague by using schemes and each team has

- Organize a workshop in order to promote the

proposed an ACDC theme for the next year. At the

exchange of ideas about this theme within pharmacy

end of the workshop, some flyers have been given


to participants in order to distribute them to people and apply what they have learned during all the day.

Methods and used tools/materials As an introduction to Counterfeit drugs, we have


invited a local expert in anti-counterfeit drugs “the

The first ACDC Day in Algeria was a success; it

Professor Mansouri”, professor in Pharmacology and

has allowed participants to learn how to recognize

the head of the national laboratory of pharmaceutical

a counterfeit drug, to be familiar with these drugs in

products control who made a presentation about

order to prevent their spread. It has allowed them to

the topic. The presentation included the generalities

communicate, to exchange ideas about the topic by

about anti-counterfeit drugs, the actual situation in

working as a team in a funny atmosphere by using

Algeria and the measures that are taken in order to

funny methods. The participants have been satisfied

avoid this plague.

by this first campaign and suggested to reorganize it

After that and in order to make in practice what

the next year.

have been acquired in the morning, a workshop has been organized.

The organization of the activity began 10 days

We tried to learn and discover together in funny

before. The ASEPA’ Chairperson of public health

way all the necessary information about the topic.

helped by some members including the contact

We divided the students into 6 teams and we have


started the activities: The first one consisted in “fill in the gaps” exercises , questions to complete and a quiz Public Health Spot 43

Anti Counterfeit Drugs Campaign

ASEPA reports:

Anti-Counterfeit Drugs Campaign in

Advertisement of the activity

pharmacy students are very interested by this topic as

The advertisement of the activity has been insured

future pharmacists and healthcare actors. This interest

by creating a Facebook even, by posters and by inviting

can be developed by introducing constant activities

pharmacy students on the ASEPA group.

about the topic such as conferences or workshops.

Budget For organizing this event, we needed: - Some posters, quiz and flyers

Our plans for next year are... In addition to what have been organized this year, we wish to add some actions:

- Balloons and candies

- Expand the campaign to other universities

- Paper and pens

- Organize a workshop by simulating a situation with

The budget was not consequent; we have organized this event with a symbolic sum of money.

Comments and ideas arising from the activity In the issue of the first anti counterfeit drugs campaign in Algeria, we discovered that people and more exactly

44 Public Health Spot

counterfeit and no counterfeit drugs and the approach that must be done.

Together against counterfeit drugs

Counterfeit dugs = threatened lives!

Sudan Anti-Counterfeit Drugs Campaign


Organisation of the activity

1) To aware pharmacy students about counterfeit

Timeline of organising the activity: 3-5 MAY 2012

drugs .

Number of students involved in organising: 30

2) Spread the word .

Advertisement of the activity:

3) To know how well the Sudanese pharmacists are

- Printed posters .

aware about this growing public health problem .

Methods and used tools/materials T-shirts contain campaign title and IPSF / FPSA logos .

- Facebook event . - Flayers . Financial supporters: University Of Khartoum – Faculty of pharmacy

Posters as advertising material .

Budget: 720 SD = 500 USD

Also using Facebook: created the social event

Experience in organising similar activities:

in the 13th of April.

- Breast cancer awareness


- Anti tuberculosis awareness - Aids awareness

Many students knew for the first about the issue of counterfeit drugs and its prevalence of Counterfit Drugs.

Comments and ideas arising from the activity

The campaigners were very eager and the interaction

First line to eradicate this phenomena is by strong

made by the workshop was very motivating. Pharmacy

regulation of the supply chain and medicines’ import.

students were very excited to get more information

- Sudanese pharmacist are aware about counterfeit

about the topic . Sudanese Pharmacist were fully aware

medicine and they get their medication from reputable

about the Dangers of counterfeit medicines and were


rather confident to the national supply chain. It seems there is no counterfeit medicines in Khartoum (capital of Sudan) due to the high connection between (Sudan Puplic Medication and Poisinous Council) and pharmacies which secures well the supply chain. May be there is counterfeit drugs on towns that are far away from center but is not detected by legal Council.

companies . - We must concentrate more on pharmacy students because we felt that they were not well informed.

Our plans for next year are Raise awareness in my faculty among all students about fake drugs by inviting more professors and doctors who have a valuable experience in this field . Public Health Spot 45

Anti Counterfeit Drugs Campaign

FPSA reports:

46 Public Health Spot

Public Health Spot 47

Tobacco Awareness Campaign

ublic Heal th Pu Publ blic H ic He ealth blic H alth P e u a blic H l th Pu ublic ealth blic H Heal th Pu ealth Heal blic H th Pu ealth ealth blic H Publ e a l t h i c ic He H ealth alt 48 Public Health Spot

Mr. Bilel Boughzala

IPSF Tobacco Awareness Campaign Co-ordinator The anti-Tobacco campaign is launched every year around on May,31st showing the great efforts to stop the big evolution of this phenomena around the World.

corner of the world to remind the bad effects of smoking and share these campaigns with us.

ÂŤWhat are the measures to decrease the rate of smokersÂť is the main topic of this year. Your suggestions could be the solution !

Public Health Spot 49

Tobacco Awareness Campaign

I hope that your campaigns will be organized from time to time in every

Tobacco and the World : Tobacco is one of the most causes of death in the World. Prevalence of tobacco consumption has been studied many times during decades. In fact, smoking is generally five times higher among men than women, however the gender gap declines with younger age. In developed countries smoking rates for men have peaked and have begun to decline.Meanwhile for women they continue to climb. Smoking prevalence has changed little since the mid-1990s (until which time it declined in English-speaking countries, which have all implemented tobacco control). In Western countries, smoking is more prevalent among populations with mental health problems, with alcohol and drug problems, among criminals, and among the homeless. As of 2002, about twenty percent of young teens (13–15) smoke worldwide. 80,000 to 100,000 children begin smoking every day. Half of those who begin smoking in adolescent years are projected to go on to smoke for 15 to 20 years. The World Health Organization (WHO) states that “Much of the disease burden and premature mortality attributable to tobacco use disproportionately affect the poor”. Of the 1.22 billion smokers, 1 billion of them live in developing or transitional economies. Rates of smoking have leveled off or declined in the developed world. In the developing world, tobacco consumption is rising by 3.4% per year as of 2002;

50 Public Health Spot

Tobacco and pharmacy student : Pharmacist must be an active supporter of anti-tobacco campaigns not only by helping smokers to quit smoking but also by making non-smokers aware about the real bad effects of smoking. By this way pharmacist can be the nucleus of a network to prevent people from smoking. As future pharmacists, pharmacy students can be really effective in tobaccocampaign. In fact, their campaigns can start from their university till street, supermarket, bus stations,etc. To emphasize on our main topic this year which is ‘what are the measures to decrease the rate of smokers’ let’s start by exposing the main strategy to stop the urging evolution of smokers : Try to prevent people from taking up consumption. Promoting cessation Regulating tobacco products To know how this phenomena spreads among pharmacy students around the world, we have organised a representative survey to know : number of smokers,frequency of smoking, type of tobacco,etc. Results will be communicated after gathering all information.

Tobacco and WHO :

Republic Of Korea

« Anyone who throws away cigarette butts in The World Health Organisations has fixed any place other than a trashbin or uses any many strategies to decrease the number of tobacco product in designated smoke-free smokers all over the World : areas shall be fined a maximum of KRW 30 Measures implemented in respect to tobacco 000 by the Minor Offenses Act (Article 1). » cultivation considering the protection of the environment


Measures implemented in respect to tobacco cultivation considering the health of people « In view of the huge loss caused by tobacco use to the public health exchequer Measures implemented in respect to tobacco a comprehensive legislation to prohibit manufacturing considering the environment advertising and regulate production supply Measures implemented in respect to tobacco and distribution of cigarettes and tobacco manufacturing considering the health of products the Ministry of Health & Family people. Welfare adopted the comprehensive tobacco Examples of the five-year reports of some control legislation in 2003. »

Brazil « These measures are part of the Brazilian National Program to Support Diversification in Tobacco Cultivated Areas. There is a pilot project in the municipality of Don Feliciano through which different areas of Health (INCA occupational health health surveillance) Labor Agriculture and Agricultural Development Ministries are working to get data on the farmers economic work and health situation and sensitize them about the oportunities in the diversification program and all environmental damage. »

Japan «According to the Article 1 of the Ordinance of the Standard Measures for Users of Agricultural Chemicals the users of agricultural chemicals have responsibilities not to have adverse effects on the human health and the environment. »

Measures implemented in indoor Public places :

Bulgaria « When one premises is under 50 sq. m. then the owner could choose whether to allow tobacco smoking or not - it depends on his/ her decision. The ventilation is compulsory. When the premises is over - then the owner has the obligation to organize separate room with impenetrable walls solid closed doors and adequate ventilation. The same rooms are obligatory for buildings where the employer have taken decision to allow smoking. It is forbidden the smoking area to be more that the non-smoking area. It is not allowed to smoke in all kind of public places but only in: places for accommodation in some premises buildings of railway air harbour and bus stations and vessels. The smoking without separate smoking rooms is allowed only in night premises which work only between 22:00 and 6:00 hours and premises under 50 sq.m. » Public Health Spot 51

Tobacco Awareness Campaign

countries :

Finland « Please see above. As an exception to this according to the Tobacco Act Section 13 b smoking can be allowed on the indoor premises of restaurants only in a separate smoking area approved for smoking. In that can case it must however be seen to it that tobacco smoke does not spread to the area where smoking is prohibited. It is prohibited to serve food or drink or to eat or drink in the smoking area. »

New Zealand « The Smoke-free Environment Act prohibits smoking in certain public places including on all school grounds at all times. »

What are the measures that must be respected ? Prohibited or restricted tobacco sales to or imports by international travelers Tax policies to reduce tobacco cunsumption More restrictive national obligations. Protection in public transport Rise people awarness by strongly supported campaigns. Make campaigns more creative.

52 Public Health Spot

Useful links : html database/ http ://

“Stop Cigarette, Save Young Generation” ISMAFARSI (Indonesia)

Tobacco products are products made entirely

13% were children up to teenagers, in addition

or partly of leaf tobacco as raw material, which are

the numbers of young smokers in Indonesia also

intended to be smoked, sucked, chewed or snuffed.

increased significantly, from 2001-2004, novice

All contain the highly addictive psychoactive

smokers increased by 1.4%. For your information,

ingredient, nicotine. Tobacco use is one of the

Indonesia ranks third most smokers in the world.

main risk factors for a number of chronic diseases,

While qualified young generation is the main assets

including cancer, lung diseases, and cardiovascular

for the country, we try to save our young generation

diseases. Despite this, it is common throughout

from the danger of tobacco.

the world. A number of countries have legislation

This campaign did in many cities in Indonesia,

restricting tobacco advertising, and regulating

World No Tobacco Day is celebrated on May 31, 2012

who can buy and use tobacco products, and where

but because of the adaption to the school’s schedule

people can smoke. While in Indonesia, the legislation

so that the implementation is not on that date. At

restriction tobacco advertising and regulating is

the roadshow, we played video about the facts on

very loose. Many underage people can be exposed

cigarettes in Indonesia, powerpoint of the dangers

by tobacco, including students. Saving young

of smoking exposure and we also give anti-smoking

generation in Indonesia, Ikatan Senat Mahasiswa

sticker and poster.

Farmasi Indonesia – ISMAFARSI (Association of

We hope with the education about smoking,

Indonesian Pharmaceutical Students Council) did

students who may have been smoking want to quit

the ‘no tobacco campaign’ in schools for celebrating

smoking and students who do not smoke can keep

the world no tobacco day.

carrying on and give the ‘no tobacco’ spirit to their





friends and family. Hopefully, this small step can

GENERATION” – is our tagline in this campaign. From

provide benefits to our young generation in order to

the total number of smokers in Indonesia, about

protect them against the dangers of smoking.

Public Health Spot 53

Tobacco Awareness Campaign

Ms. Nur Azizah Fitria reports:


54 Public Health Spot

Public Health Spot 55

Humanitarian Campaign

Publ ic He a l th Pu Publ b i l c i c H Heal ublic ealth t h Heal P u blic H th Pu ublic ealth blic H Heal th Pu ealth c Hea blic H lth Pu ealth ealth blic H Publ e a i lic He c Hea lth alt lth 56 Public Health Spot

Ms. Janet Janbek

Humanitarian Campaign Co-ordinator Tons of warm greetings from the Humanitarian coordinator, My name is Janet Janbek, and I’m the proud newly appointed humanitarian coordinator. I have been a part of IPSF since early 2010 as a contact person for my country’s association at the beginning (and still am). I’m in my 5th year at the Faculty of Pharmacy in Jordan. IPSF doesn’t only say “pharmaceutical” to me. It is where creativeness, kindness, learning, care, family, fun and experience happen! In the humanitarian subcommittee, academically and pharmacy-driven to create campaigns that aim to increase humanity, benefit people as well as communicate to people the importance of what we show so much interest in. We try to make campaigning a happy world that is full of opportunities for ourselves and everyone involved.

Public Health Spot 57

Humanitarian Campaign

that is what we do! We are a family that –together- works

Humanitarian Sub-Committee members answer: “because I feel a responsibility to make persistent and constructive contributions, to better the lives of others.”

I became interested in humanitarian... “due to my desire to work with low-income, loweducation, low-resource populations.”

w m

do m m to ca f

Madeline King

Sara Ammar

“because I am from a low socioeconomic country and I have seen all the hardships people have been through. I would like to contribute, to the best of my ability and simply help, offer a hand, offer support. “ Pareezat Rahman

58 Public Health Spot Public Health Spot

“As a res can do t of life o planet is and that a pa


“mainly because in my country, we don’t have much resources or opportunities. Only a minority gets good education, good health care services, good income but most of the population doesn’t and I think it’s the responsibility of every citizen to try and change this situation.”

“After my niece was diagnosed with Fanconi anemia, which precipitates Leukemia and often requires a bone marrow transplant. After researching the disease state and therapy, I confronted and overcame my fears/ misconceptions of bone marrow transplants (~80% of onations are similar to donating blood plasma!). I made it my goal to make blood, bone marrow, and organ donation more prevalent issues on my campus, and I think these opics should be present on each healthcare professional ampus as one, painless/selfless act can save a life. I look forward to hearing other students’/colleges’ ideas, and sharing my own experiences in order to prevent these issues from being overlooked.”

Myriam Yasmine Hamouda

Garrett Rompelman

aroline Small

“as a teenager after learning from my Thai family about the lack of healthcare resources in Thailand and other countries in Southeast Asia. “


Humanitarian Campaign

sult I think anything we to improve the quality of people around the s extremely important t is why I wanted to be art of this group.”

“Because I want to learn more about human right and try to find what pharmacy students can do between humanitarian and our profession. I also hope I can improve my capability of information integration”

Dianna Staves

“My role in global health includes coordinating 10 teams of pharmacy students to 7 different countries who will treat about 10,000 patients on interdisciplinary medical trips. We primarily focus on providing comprehensive medical and pharmacy care to resource-limited areas. Through being a member of the humanitarian sub-committee I hope to learn and gain insight into other activities going on around the world - and how pharmacy is reaching out to communities that need access to quality healthcare. “ Ken Leonard

Public Health Spot 59

Ms. Sheena Patel writes about:


A project that is part of IPSF in America. This initiative

at Makerere University in the pharmacy department

was proposed to me two years ago when I was an

did not have any books. So I made it my goal to collect

incoming first year student pharmacist. Pharmabridge

as many pharmacy textbooks as I could to provide to

allows students in America to connect with and help

these students. Over the last two years I have been

student pharmacists in other developing nations.

able to collect over 100 pharmacy textbooks. I hope

Helping these students include providing them with

to collect more in the future but for now this is a great

pharmacy resources that we in America utilize.

start. My next goal was to raise money to ship these

When I first heard about this, I was really excited to

textbooks to students at Makerere University.

work with another pharmacy and help them out in any

My professor and I researched a variety of cheap

way I could. An upperclassman told me where to look for

alternatives to get these books to Africa. The cheapest

more information and whom to contact with questions.

way turned out to be through the rotation program.

As I researched this project I learned how much of an

The students who were participating in the rotation

impact my actions can have on these students. I was

in Africa were told to bring a second suitcase. These

fortunate enough to have help from a faculty member

suitcases were then filled with many pharmacy

at Wilkes University. She offers a pharmacy rotation

textbooks and were carried onto the plane with the

in Africa and works closely with a pharmacy school in

students and flown to Africa. This was the cheapest

Uganda called Makerere University. At the start of this

alternative in the fact that it did not cost us anything

project, my goal was to find out what resources the

to put these books in the suitcase and have them be

students needed and how can I help provide them

flown to Africa with the student pharmacists.

what they need. My professor told me that the library

60 Public Health Spot

We were also able to ship a couple of textbooks via

mail to student pharmacists at Makerere University. This

another Zumba Class Fundraiser since it was a success

route was expensive even though we did raise money

last year. I hope to raise money through other alternative

to ship these textbooks. A Zumba class fundraiser was

means but for now I am glad that the students were able

held. For those of you who are not familiar with Zumba

to receive resources that can help Involved and start a

it is basically a dance that combines exercise and music

project like Pharmabridge at your pharmacy school.

in a fun manner. Many people say Zumba is the way to

Pharmabridge has allowed me to step out from my

go to have fun while exercising! This Zumba class was

boundaries and really help student pharmacists in need.

held once and enough money was raised to ship these

I am glad that I was able to get involved in such a project

textbooks to Makerere University.

and to help so many students by providing them with

Finally with this project I wanted to provide student

the basic knowledge of pharmacy. This initiative helps

pharmacists with is online resources and databases. In

me realize how fortunate I am to have an android that

today’s society we are all electronically connected. The

can allow me access to multiple drug resources. Some

best way to continue this is to provide these students with

student pharmacists all over the world do not have such

electronic means to learn about the field of pharmacy.

privileges. Having this opportunity helped me realize

These electronic resources would include information

that providing these textbooks is very beneficial to

like drug resources and up to date information on how to

students all over the world but especially at Makerere

treat patients with certain disease states. I hope one day

University. I would personally recommend to all student

I am able to provide the students at Makerere University

pharmacists all over the world to get involved in

with these resources, but as of right now I am content

Pharmabridge or start a project like this at your school.

with what I am able to provide.

You can make such an impact on a student’s life and also

So far we have sent over 40 pharmacy textbooks to

help future pharmacists, which is pretty amazing. So

student pharmacists at Makerere University. I hope to

please get involved and start a project like Pharmabridge

send more in the upcoming year but in order to do so I

at your pharmacy school.

need to raise the money. I plan on doing so by holding

Public Health Spot 61

ASEPA (Algeria) reports:

Our experience in vampire cup live campaign

This year, ASEPA Algeria participated for the first

banners and flyers about blood donation; the main

time to the vampire cup live campaign, a significant

goal was to inform people about this respectful act

public health event and a challenge for the whole

even if they were not able to donate this day.


The coordinator of the event and the whole team

The first thing to do was to obtain the support

were very motivated to concretize this challenge,

of a national blood donation foundation in order

the challenge to win this competition and more

to make each blood donation official and useful for

important than this, to obtain the satisfaction to

people. The second step was to define the place of

accomplish an honorable task for all these patients

the campaign; the main goal was to choose public

that blood can save lives. The team made everything

and accessible places such as hospitals and some

possible in order to encourage people to donate

big universities of the capital in order to reach the

from 9 am to 5 pm during 4 days, it was sometimes

most possible people including all the categories of

hard but they spent a lot of memorable times and

people that can make a blood donation.

the satisfaction was finally here with 531 blood

After that, the advertisement of the event was very important. For this, we created an official Facebook

donations! Through this act, ASEPA’s team won the IPSF

Pu bli cH Pu Pub ea bli lic lth Pu c H H Pu bli ea ea bl c H lth lth ic H He ea P Pu e a u a b l t l b alt th h P lic lic lth h P Pu ub H He He ub blic lic ealt alth page especially for the campaign and invited as

vampire cup live campaign 2012 but at the same time

much people as possible, with a constant flow of

a lot of memories and proved that with motivation

information about blood donation and the details

and work, everything is possible!

of the campaign. To add more impact, a campaign material has been prepared including posters,

62 Public Health Spot

Australia NAPSA

Currently in Australia, 1 in 3 people need blood

healthy competition between the branches to see

but only 1 in 30 people donate. For every person

which branch can give the most amount of blood!

that donates blood, a single donation can help 3

NAPSA runs a competition to see which branch

different patients. For this reason, NAPSA and each

can accumulate the most donations! The winners

of its individual branches stands so strongly behind

are announced at our Annual Congress and the

such a worthwhile campaign. Our campaign is run

winners are even given a trophy! If you want to run

over 3 weeks and this suits most of our individual

Vampire Cup I would definitely recommend running

branches as it gives them time to figure out when

a competition, as it definitely helps increase the

they can advertise it the best (as we all seem to go


on uni holidays at different times!). Vampire Cup is a great opportunity for students

NAPSA loves participating in Vampire Cup and we

across Australia to participate in helping save

foresee that this great campaign will be running in

lives. It unifies the pharmacy students and ties

our Australian branches for years to come! :)

them to a good cause all the while promoting

Public Health Spot 63

Ms. Madeline King reports:

Mission trip in


Texas A&M HSC College of Pharmacy APhA-ASP/IPSF Liaison My first mission trip experience was traveling to

Excelencia Tecnologica en Salud (CENETEC). We

Bolivia. In 2011, I was a member of the Texas A&M

would not have been able to plan and execute the

Health Science Center Inter-professional Mission of

trip without the help of these groups. The pharmacy

Service team. I loved the experience and the people

in our clinic had many medications left over from our

so much that I decided to return in 2012. I had a

trip in 2011 as well as other missionary groups, so we

better idea of what to expect the second time and

were able to see patients and dispense medications

was able to help other students prepare for the trip.

while waiting for our supplies to arrive.

Before the trip this year, each member was asked

The first morning, many residents of the local

to take a cultural competency online course through

village welcomed us with singing and hand-made

the Institute for International Medicine (INMED) to

wreaths. We also had the opportunity to take a tour

help prepare for the culture shock that comes along

of Quesimpuco guided by the president of CENETEC,

with traveling to an area that has such different living

who was born there. We attended a church service

conditions and beliefs. The course was very helpful

with the members of the community and their new

and pointed out some ideas that I hadn’t considered,

pastor. The high school students then performed

even during my first trip. It helped to make me more

a traditional dance for us as a thank you, and gave

conscious of my own beliefs and actions.

each of us a scarf and hat.

Unfortunately, we had trouble at the start of our

After the ceremony, we began work in the clinic.

trip. We had problems going through customs at

Each doctor was assigned a room and the dental

the airport in La Paz and were unable to take any

team used two rooms to provide cleanings and

of the medications we brought or our medical

extractions. The pharmacy room consisted of a

or dental equipment.

After more than 24 hours

table that we used to prepare the prescriptions and

of traveling via planes and SUVs, our team of

many shelves of medications and other medical

health care professionals and students


supplies. We set up a table right outside the door to

safely in the small, remote village of Quesimpuco,

the pharmacy where we dispensed the medications

Bolivia. Members included students and faculty

to the patients and counseled them on their

from the Colleges of Medicine, Nursing, Dentistry,

medications. Most of the older members of the

Pharmacy, and Public Health.

We were guided

village didn’t speak Spanish well, if at all; the native

and accompanied by members of Servants in Faith

language is Quechua, which is an Incan language

and Technology (SIFAT) and Centro Nacional de

and doesn’t resemble Spanish. The local high school

64 Public Health Spot

students learn Spanish in school so they were able to

the physician, and were each allowed approximately

translate our instructions from Spanish to Quechua for

5 minutes to state their most troublesome issue. The

patients who didn’t speak Spanish. We could not have

physician diagnosed the chief complaint and sent them

effectively counseled many members of the community

directly to the pharmacy with a slip of paper which

without their help and were very grateful for them.

contained only the names of the medications they

Many of the disease states we treated were some form

needed. We pre-packaged vitamins and some analgesic

of infectious disease, such as parasites and skin infections.

and anti-inflammatory medications to give to every

It would be difficult to treat chronic conditions like

patient, in addition to any specific medication that the

hypertension because there is not always someone there

physician requested

to dispense medications, and there wouldn’t always

After we closed the clinic on the last day, our team

be a way to obtain the proper medications. There is a

was very exhausted but it was a rewarding experience,

government-run hospital in the village which provides

especially because so many patients and leaders from

low-cost medical care and medications, but some people

the community expressed their gratitude toward our

still can’t afford the care, so that is how mission groups

team. Each member of our team was an integral part of

like ours fill the gap. We are able to provide medications

the mission and we could not have operated effectively

and information with no charge.

or efficiently if even one discipline was missing. The

While counseling patients on their medications, I tried

pharmacy team was beneficial to the mission group

to keep in mind that the patients I saw were not familiar

because we were trained on how to properly counsel

with safety caps or how to use an inhaler. I frequently

patients. Our College of Pharmacy also offers a pharmacy

asked them to show me how to use the medications so

Spanish course, which two of us had taken, and was very

that I was sure they understood the procedure. I also

beneficial. Overall the trip was an amazing, rewarding, and

with the culture, what would be the best way to explain

educational experience.

certain topics to patients so that they would get the

Quechua people and more about medicine due to

most benefit from the counseling session.

working so closely with professionals in other health

After two and a half days of running the clinic in

I learned more about the


Quesimpuco, we took a four-hour SUV trek to a village that was only 30 miles away, called Futina. There was a newly built clinic there, and a local doctor practices there occasionally. Since a mission group hadn’t been to Futina before, there was a great need for medical care. People walked many miles from neighboring villages to come to the clinic for medical attention. We spent two and a half days there providing care and were still not able to see every single patient. Near the end of the last clinic day, seeing that there were still many patients waiting in line outside of our facility, some members of our team made the decision to keep the clinic open late and see the last patients as quickly as possible. . Patients went to the nursing station and then

Public Health Spot 65

Humanitarian Campaign

asked members of SIFAT or CENETEC, who were familiar

ATEP (Tunisia) reports:

STOP Violence Against Women!

On the 8th of November, the Humanitarian

certainly the “Make-Up Corner”: female students

committee in collaboration with the Public Health

would go in and be turned into battered women by

committee of ATEP (Association Tunisienne des

a make-up artist. They would then walk around with

Etudiants en Pharmacie) along with the National

their shocking looks( black eyes, blood flowing from

Office of Family and Population organized a

their lips, marks of beating on their faces…) making

campaign about violence against women. The idea

people wonder what was going on and come to ask

of the campaign came to us while planning the

for more details.

program of the year, we noticed that the National Office of Family and Population was working on

At the end of the campaign, a conference and a

this problem and when we searched for more

debate were held by Professor Yamina Mathlouthi

information, we found out that in Tunisia, this

who teaches at the Higher Institute of Childhood

subject is not only a matter of violation of human

and is also a painter who has made many exhibitions

rights but it’s also a public health issue.

on violence against women. She talked about how this problem can affect the family and especially the

The campaign took place inside of the faculty. A

children who often find themselves helpless in front

special area was provided that we decorated with

of such difficult circumstances. She also mentioned

black curtains and posters with quotes related

the impact of this kind of violence on society and

to the subject. The different types of violence

the consequences on each and everyone.

were discussed: physical violence which is most common but also psychological, sexual, economical violence were talked over. There were projections

The main goal of the campaign was not to just

of videos, music on the background celebrating

raise awareness about this issue but also to talk

the glory of women, brochures containing all the

about the possible solutions (where to go, who to

needed information... In the middle of the day,

talk to, what to do...).

we surprised everyone with a play performed by

We never thought that such a difficult issue could

a bunch of students. They exposed how violence

be approached this way. Another proof that the best

against women is still something you can’t easily talk

way to educate is definitely shocking!

about in a country like Tunisia and how a woman confronted to this situation often finds herself alone and too ashamed to stand up for herself. However, the biggest success of the day was

66 Public Health Spot


Public Health Spot 67

68 Public Health Spot

STOP Violence

Against Women!

Public Health Spot 69

Medicine Awareness Campaign

ublic Heal th Pu Publ blic H ic He ealth blic H alth P e u a blic H l th Pu ublic ealth blic H Heal th Pu ealth Heal blic H th Pu ealth ealth blic H Publ e a l t h i c ic He H ealth alt 70 Public Health Spot

The World of Generic Drugs

In order to produce a generic version of the brand

generic drugs are counterfeit medicines, are being

name drug, interested manufacturers must wait for

passed on, leading to the fear of using generic drugs.

patent expiration of the brand name drug, which

Therefore, it is of pivotal importance that generic

usually lasts for about 20 years. When their application

drug awareness must be increased across the globe

is approved, generic drugs have to undergo a series

so that patients are able to clear out all their doubts

of stringent tests to ensure both the brand name

about these drugs. Image from

and generic drug are bioequivalent to each other.

Now, how does generic drug play a role in

Despite the FDA’s persistent Quality and quantity are

helping to reduce cost of healthcare? The reason

two important criteria that everyone looks for when

lies in the much cheaper cost of generic drugs. The

it comes to healthcare. Patients wish to get the best,

huge decrease in price compared to branded drug

effective treatment at a cost they can afford. However,

is because the generic manufacturers bear only part

with new drugs being invented, better formulas

of the cost of researches and clinical trials during

being created and sophisticated technologies

drug development process. Simply put, by imitating

contributing to modern healthcare, one might think

the recipe of the original drug, they can skip all the

that everything is expensive in the medical world.

hassle of inventing a new drug and just spend a

Now, this is when generic drugs come into play.

small amount of money on mass producing generic

First of all, let’s clear up all the confusion about

versions of the drugs. Besides that, there will be more

brand name drug and generic drugs. A brand name

than one company producing the generic versions of

drug is the original drug created by a manufacturer,

the same branded drug. This means stiff competition

for example, Panadol®. United States Food and

among the manufacturers which eventually drives

Drug Administration (FDA) defines generic drug as

the price down. Patients can rest assured that the

a duplicate of the brand name drug, in which their

cheaper price of generic drugs is not because of low

dosage form, safety, strength, route of administration,

quality of the drug.

quality, performance characteristics and intended use

The future of generic drug is a very bright one. The

are identical to each other. Hence, the only difference

reliance on generic drug means a reduction in financial

could be the inactive ingredients used such as

burden on patients, especially those suffering from

colouring and flavouring agents, preservatives, etc.

chronic diseases. As all parties strive for an affordable

effort to ensure safety and efficacy of generic drugs,

healthcare to cater for the ever increasing number

barriers to generic drug use still exist. Many patients

of patients, generic drug industry is set to bloom for

still think twice when they are being prescribed with

years to come. With that said, let’s keep our fingers

generic drugs. The reasons behind this are the lack

crossed that all of us will keep an open mind towards

of information and worse, false information being

these humble drugs.

circulated around about generic drugs. False rumours stating that generic drug cause harm to patients, that

References: 1. 2. Hassali MA, Thambyappa J, Shafie AA, Ibrahim MI, Awang R et al. What you should know about generic medicines. Malaysia. Universiti

Public Health Spot 71

Medicine Awareness Campaign

Ms. Hui Ling, Hah

Mr. Islam Mohamed Alwakeel writes about:

MAC and developing countries

Being from a developing country make me so

although this is extremely wrong. Flu is completely

interested to write in this topic. The culture of using

different from common cold! We have to change our

drugs is a critical that we have to spread and share it

minds to overcome this problem; as many people are

everywhere especially to those who live in developing

not professional by any means to deal with diseases

countries where this culture almost does not exist. So,

and illness. Changing their lifestyle is the first measure

it`s important to give it our care. I have to be objective

to improve their adherence to correct monitoring and

in judging this issue.

responding to a disease or illness

Living in it, we have to change a bit!

“Refer to Physician” is not a shameful expression

Do not get annoyed, I come from a developing

Regarding us as pharmacists, we have a great role

country just like you but as an IPSFer, I am used to face

concerning this problem. While being at my school, I

my problems by solving and eliminate it.

attended a lecture about “Community Pharmacy” and

The reasons of these problem are so many. One of the reason is poverty. Poverty here isn’t financial but

one of my colleagues asked the Professor “why do we use (Refer to physician) a lot?”

we are poor in the culture of using drugs. Besides,

The professor then answered him “It’s a matter

our governments do not support our health care

of proficiency to know where is your limit to avoid

matters completely. On the other hand, the problem

unhappy consequences”

arises because of us -we, pharmacists- as health care

I think it`s not a defect in for the pharmacist to

providers. In these the countries in which we are

say this expression as everyone is professional in his

talking about, the people want to save their money

specialty. We are professionals in using the drugs,

so they refer themselves directly to the nearest

physicians are so professional too in diagnosis

pharmacist or self-therapy. By not going to the

so it’s not your primary task to diagnose and this

physician, they lose much rather than saving some

makes “Refer to physician” is a critical choice for the


pharmacist when he reach his limit and the patient

Self-therapy is not suitable in most cases and

needs accurate diagnosis. As pharmacists, we should

inappropriate treatment will exacerbate the illness

collaborate more with the physicians as all of us work

and might lead to a critical conditions.

for one goal provide people with a better healthcare

For example, drugs have so many side effects when

system. We have to set this culture and spread it in our

taken in different quantities or when symptoms are

society from position in the community pharmacy,

not present. In addition, antibiotics are used by

home and everywhere. I think that this is one of our

ordinary people to treat minor diseases as cold

roles as pharmacists and IPSFers.

72 Public Health Spot

Public Health Spot 73

Mr. Frank Kumi writes about:

Stay Safe: Insist on Talking to Your Pharmacist

Registered Pharmacist (R.Ph.) Member, Pharmaceutical Society of Ghana (PSGh) The role of the modern pharmacist has evolved from just filling up prescriptions, compounding, and selling medicines to a more patient-centred orientation. In fact, contemporary training of pharmacists recognizes the need to train pharmacists to deliver direct patient care for the improvement of health outcomes. Of note, is the recently extended period of training pharmacy graduates from 4 years to 6 years at the Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in consultation with the Pharmaceutical Society of Ghana (PSGh) and the Pharmacy Council of Ghana. Such a seismic change in pharmacy training is envisaged to ensure that the country’s new breeds of pharmacists are at par with their counterparts from developed countries and are also well equipped to face the ever dynamic world of drug therapy. Careful observations have revealed that Ghanaians are poorly utilizing the professional expertise of pharmacists working in hospitals and the various community pharmacies scattered across the country. A confluence of factors has contributed to such a worrying observation. This dismal situation can mainly be attributed to the brazen violation of the Pharmacy Act 489 by both private hospitals as well as government hospitals. The Pharmacy Act 489 (passed in 1994 to ensure public safety and high standards of pharmaceutical services) explicitly prohibits any person to operate a pharmacy/dispensary without the supervision of a registered pharmacist.

74 Public Health Spot

In sharp contrast to this law, most private hospitals and government hospitals are operating pharmacies without the supervision of pharmacists to ensure patients safety and optimum benefits in using medications. Although the Pharmacy Act bestows a legal mandate upon the Pharmacy Council to enforce strict compliance with the provisions of the pharmacy law, human and financial resources, coupled with logistical constraints are making it difficult for the Council to effectively discharge regulatory duties. Regardless of these challenges, the public has a right and an obligation to receive quality pharmaceutical services from any pharmaceutical outlet in this country. Insisting on pharmaceutical services delivered by a highly skilled and trained pharmacist at the pharmacy is a guaranteed step of achieving such an objective. Pharmacists provide invaluable treatment and medication counselling to clients as a way of ensuring that optimum benefits are derived from medications and treatment whiles minimizing the potential side effects associated with the use of medicines. Some medicines have special instructions that come with them and therefore have to be faithfully obeyed. Failure in knowing and following these pieces of advice may result in sub-optimal treatment and ultimately leading to treatment failure. Take for example a medicine called omeprazole, commonly prescribed for treating stomach ulcer. The oral form of this medicine has to be taken before meals because of its intrinsic mechanism of action. If you fail to heed to the pharmacist’s advice that your medication “should

be swallowed at least 30mins before meals,” chances are that you will miss out on the efficacy of this anti-ulcer drug. Apart from providing you with special pieces of medication counselling points, your pharmacist is also well trained in disease management to proffer relevant lifestyle changes to compliment your medications in order to achieve your treatment goals faster. Lifestyle changes evidenced to improve and manage chronic diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, asthma, gout, etc would be gladly provided by the pharmacist at no extra cost at all. Unlike seeing your doctor, neither special appointment nor queue is needed before you can see a pharmacist. Even though pharmacists are not systematically trained to diagnose diseases, they are able to offer advice about minor ailments, such as coughs, colds, cold sores and general aches and pains in accordance with established laws. Ghanaians are accordingly encouraged to talk to a pharmacist about any health topic. Many pharmacies do allocate private consulting area for this special purpose. Since pharmacists obtain extensive erudition on drugs during their period of pharmacy education and training, they are in the best position to advice on how to store medications. Proper storage conditions are needed to ensure that the potency of medicines are not lost--but kept intact to prevent treatment failure. Essential advice such as keeping medicines in their original container; keeping heat sensitive drugs in the appropriate part of the refrigerator; proper cabinet for keeping medicines etc will all be delivered by the pharmacist. It is also important to get to know from a pharmacist that whether a new prescription written for you by your doctor does not contain drugs that could significantly affect one another or might not profoundly interact with any other medicine you are currently taking. In furtherance, pharmacists are best situated to avert any catastrophic circumstances whereby a medicine written for you could worsen or degenerate any of your previous or new ailment. Similarly it is always good to know from your pharmacist whether you should avoid certain foods while taking your medicines. Research has led to the identification of a number of food-drug interactions of clinical significance. In late 2012, a study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal observed that “the number of drugs which had serious side effects with grapefruit had gone from 17 in 2008 to 43 in 2012.” In similar vein, certain medications—especially antibiotics—should not be

concurrently taken with milk otherwise the drug will be poorly absorbed; eventually leading to poor control of that particular infection. However, relying on the professional competencies of a pharmacist will definitely prevent the occurrence of such unwanted circumstances because they are the best port of call to let you know how your diet may affect your medication. Pregnancy and lactation are dainty situations which could easily be complicated by certain medicines. Since most drugs are not tested in pregnancy or breastfeeding prior to their approval, it is difficult—even for health professionals—to vouch for their safety in these special conditions. It has been established that some drugs— including common pain killers—can cause serious birth defects or delay labour. Pregnant women and lactating mothers should therefore always talk to their doctor or pharmacist before taking any medicine that they need. Adopting this practice is a safety measure for the unborn or breastfeeding baby. You also need to know the side effects associated with the medicines you are about to take. Knowing beforehand the side effects of a medicine could enhance medication compliance as the pharmacist may advise on measures that need to be taken to mitigate any unwanted effects that will likely occur. Next time you find yourself in a pharmacy, ask your pharmacist what the side effects of your medicines are and when they might begin to occur. What should you do if they occur? Lastly, it is important to establish a relationship with one pharmacy so that your pharmacist has a complete history of your prescribed medications. If you visit a pharmacy which has no pharmacist, as a safety measure for your life, you have the right as a patient to seek the services of another pharmacy which has a pharmacist present. You can even take it further by reporting it to the Pharmacy Council or the professional body of pharmacists in this country, PSGh. It is against the laws of this country to operate a pharmacy without the physical presence of a pharmacist at any point in time. In summary, there is a great deal of benefit you stand to gain by interacting with a pharmacist as the role (both clinical and non-clinical) of the pharmacist in healthcare delivery certainly goes beyond what has been elaborated in this piece. Your pharmacist is an important resource when it comes to your safety in medication usage.

Mr. Kheloud Mahmoud Youness reports:

Breast Cancer Awareness Campaign

ASPSA (Alexandria Scientific Pharmaceutical Students Association), Egypt

Breast cancer is one of most widespread diseases. It is the most common cancer in women worldwide,

such as early menarche, late menopause and late age at first childbirth .

comprising 16% of all female cancers. This motivated

Exogenous hormones.

ASPSA (Alexandria Scientific Pharmaceutical Students

Oral contraceptives and hormone replacement

Association “Egypt�) to do the campaign.


We started out by preparing our members for the

Fourth: Prevention of breast cancer by making

campaign by a session that included a presentation

some lifestyle modifications such as a healthy diet,

given by the chairperson of public health and

physical activity, breast feeding and control of alcohol

the activity Mr. Mustafa Kamal. The presentation

intake. These modifications could have an impact on

contained the key messages necessary to increase

reducing the incidence of breast cancer on the long

the awareness of the public on breast cancer, which


were: First: Breast cancer is the top cancer attacking

The session also included training the members

women worldwide and is increasing particularly in

how to communicate with the public and deliver the

developing countries.

message professionally and nicely.

Second: Early detection remains the cornerstone of breast cancer control.

At ASPSA, when we start preparing for a campaign, we focus on how to reach the target group of people

Third: Some of the important risk factors are:

which, in a breast cancer awareness campaign, would

A familial history of breast cancer.

be women between 20 and 50 years of age. However,

Prolonged exposure to endogenous estrogens,

this year, we thought to spread out the awareness

76 Public Health Spot

more widely and profoundly and since prevention is

treatment to more than 120 people in one day. Our day

better than cure, we decided, that our target group

at the club showed us how much the community trusts us

shouldn’t comprise only of women, but also children and

as pharmacists. I, personally, experienced that trust when

teenagers, to provide them with the sort of knowledge

a woman came to me and told me she suspected having

that would protect them, and most likely their children in

breast cancer but her doctor dismissed it and told her she

the future. From there came the idea of going to schools

was fine, but still she was worried, so she trusted me as a

and so our first stop was El-Quds language school, where

pharmacist to ask for advice. That made me so happy and

we gave a presentation about the disease to 25 students

proud of being a pharmacy student.

of ages 15 to 18 years, in addition to the school’s teachers.

Knowing how the community respects and trusts us,

Another group of 120 students received a file with all the

we headed for our next and last stop, the Campus of

information they need to know about breast cancer. The

Faculty of Pharmacy, Alexandria University. Our campus is

audience was very much responsive and interested in the

the most important site for all of our campaigns. Our aim


was to deliver the information to the maximum number

Certainly our main target was the people at risk, so our

of students, pharmacists of the future, so that they can

next stop was Alexandria Sporting Club, one of the oldest

spread it in return to the maximum number of patients.

social and sports clubs in Alexandria. The club was a great

We reached about 200 students and flyers were also

opportunity for us to reach women of different age groups.

handed. Our goal is to help pharmacy students to always

Even some men were interested to hear about the subject.

be worth the community’s trust.

Fifteen of our members were able to raise awareness both

The success of the campaign is of course contributed

orally and by handing out flyers, containing the basic

to the great team spirit and the hard work of our board

information about breast cancer and its diagnosis and


Public Health Spot 77



International Pharmaceutical Students’ Federation PO BOX 84200 2508 AE Den Haag The Netherlands Tel: +31 70 302 1992 Fax: +31 70 302 1999 Email: Website:



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Public Health SPOT#2  

Public Health SPOT#2, February 2013

Public Health SPOT#2  

Public Health SPOT#2, February 2013