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Table of Contents Note from LPSA President .................................................................................3 Professors Interviews Dr. Lamis Karaoui ..............................................................................................5 Dr. Nibal Chamoun ............................................................................................. 6 Dr. Hanine Mansour .........................................................................................12 Dr. May Saab .....................................................................................................17 Dr. Mohamad Issa .............................................................................................18 Students Interviews Noor Noubani ....................................................................................................20 Aya Saidi ............................................................................................................23 Doha Masri ........................................................................................................25 Ghida Itani .............................................................Error! Bookmark not defined. Rita Hlal .............................................................................................................30 Monica Charro ......................................................Error! Bookmark not defined. Stephanie Mourad .............................................................................................34 Rayan Akkawi ...................................................................................................37 Suicide and Depression in Lebanon: Students' Articles Nathalie Joelle Abi Saleh ..................................................................................40 Aicha El Masri ...................................................................................................42 Elie Karam .........................................................................................................44 Yasmine Naja.....................................................................................................46 Ghida Raad ........................................................................................................47 IPSF News ..........................................................................................................50 IPW Experience: Article by Joelle Jabbour and Rouba Nasser ……….…61


Note from LPSA President Dearest readers,

I would like to welcome you all to our very first LPSA newsletter for 2018. I am much honored to share with you this great initiative for LPSA as we discover together our members’ talent in writing and their amazing ideas. Let us consider this as a step forward towards highlighting the importance of sharing and criticizing certain topics while contributing to a change in the understanding of issues that are considered worth discussing.

We spend days, months, and years dedicating for our lives seeking happiness. But what is happiness? Is there a universal definition for this term? How do we seek happiness? Are we truly happy whenever we share a post on social media that is supposed to express “happiness�? Are we too focused on being happy that we eventually came to realize that it is exactly the opposite of how we feel? We live in a world where almost nothing is considered a taboo anymore, and depression should follow. It is time to admit that we are different, be truthful to ourselves and act upon it. It is time to share and talk about it because guess what? You are never alone.

Rayan Akkawi LPSA President 2017-2018


Professors Interviews

4 Karaoui Dr. Lamis Karaoui B.S. Pharm, PharmD., BCPS Lebanese American University, LAU

You can view the whole interview with Dr. Lamis Karaoui by clicking on the link below. Interview with Dr. Lamis Karaoui.

Done by: Yasmeen Al Hamwi Professional Year 2, Lebanese American University Media & Publication Committee, LPSA Joined in 2017


Dr. Nibal Chamoun Dr. Nibal Chamoun B.S. Pharm, PharmD., BCPS Lebanese American University, LAU Clinical Assistant Professor, Clinical Coordinator, LAU Medical Center-Rizk Hospital Pharmacy Practice

1. You are a doctor in the department of pharmacy practice with a specialty in cardiology and anticoagulation. What made you choose that domain in pharmacy? I have been interested in cardiovascular diseases since I was very young. However, my interest in anticoagulation grew throughout my training experience. 2. Being very successful in your field, what is your advice to pharmacy students that are still a bit lost in choosing their career when they graduate? Number one advice when choosing their career path: always look for what initially motivated you to go into pharmacy. For example, when I was choosing my career path in pharmacy, I was wondering if I should pursue my passion, Cardiology, or if I should explore other fields that are less available as specialties in practice. At one point I was applying to other specialties like Emergency Medicine and Pharmacotherapy, however, I ended up choosing Cardiology because I knew that was where my heart was. It is in this field where I can continuously give.


In summary, my recommendation to students would be, when you are choosing your career path make sure you choose something you are passionate about because you need continuous passion in order contribute to patient care and grow professionally. 3. What would you advise students who went into this major because of their parents? Some might go into this major without loving it at first, but it is important to be open to exploring the opportunities that this major can open up for you. In my opinion, it is impossible not to love it as you discover what pharmacy is all about. For example, when I went into pharmacy school, I thought about going into pharmacy school as pre-med. I thought that I would continue a PharmD degree at LAU since it has a very strong Pharmacy program that is ACPE accredited. What are 5-6 years when you are young? As I went deeper into the years of pharmacy, I started recognizing how important pharmacy is. For example, when I took pharmacology, I started realizing how intricate the details are, the way medications act on our body, and I thought to myself� I have to pursue a PhD in Pharmacology�. Then I started taking therapeutics, and I thought it was incredible how much I can help the healthcare team by being a pharmacotherapy expert, knowing the intricate details about medications. As a pharmacist, you know these medications related details inside out. Other health care professionals know the medications, but as they multitask throughout their day, they may not have the time and the memory to recall all the intricate details about the medications in terms. Intricate details about renal dysfunction, drug-drug interactions, prohibited combinations, as well as being well versed in the details of new clinical trials- knowing the inclusion, exclusion, the specific study outcomes and results- all of this translates into providing the best patient centered care. Pharmacotherapy is evolving everyday. For students who went into the field of pharmacy initially thinking that pharmacy is not what they want to do, that it


is not their ‘end all be all’ goal, once they discover a part of pharmacy they are passionate about, they should pursue it and nurture it. Pharmacy is as limited as you want it to be, or as wide as you want it to be- you define the breadth! If you like patient care, you can be a clinical pharmacist practicing in a multidisciplinary setting, in a hospital pharmacy, or in a community pharmacy where you can catch near-misses and counsel patients. You can also serve as a medical liaison in a medical company where you would be the drug therapy specialist who prepares educational materials for health care professionals. If you are interested in research, you can pursue a PhD, you can be a clinical researcher, or you can be a clinical practitioner and a researcher at the same time. If you are interested in business, you can be a medical representative, or you can pursue a MBA for example. There are a lot of options for pharmacists out there if you put your mind into it. Always put in the extra effort, you have to invest in yourself to stand out. When you go to your experiential rotations, you have to make sure that you are making the best out of them. Your experiential rotations are where you can extract practice and make yourself shine. Keep in mind that professionalism is key! 4. What makes your current field of work interesting to you? I have a passion for patient care and I have a passion for teaching. In my field of work, I get to take care of patients and I get to teach my students as I provide patient care- it’s all about sharing my experience. That is the best combination for me. Also in addition to patient care and teaching, it’s always new. Patient cases are always new; you think you have seen it all but then something new comes along. As for teaching, I find it really enriching because my students motivate me to learn more.


5. Before reaching where they are right now, can you highlight what are the major challenges a fresh graduate might encounter in pharmacy? One of the main challenges fresh graduates encounter in pharmacy is that they have applied themselves so much during pharmacy school, they studied so much, that they think the second they graduate they will land their dream job. My advice to students is that before you graduate, you should make use of your experiential rotations because during these months you get to tap into various domains of pharmacy and you might identify where your passion in pharmacy lies. Then after you graduate, you should pick a job that will help you build on that career path you have identified. For example, if you are interested in pursuing clinical pharmacy and you want to land a residency and you apply and you weren’t successful in matching, well that is okay. Apply next year but in the mean time do something that will make you a stronger in the setting you are applying to. Go with this mindset: I am going to aim for a stellar job but I am going to work on myself so I can be the best candidate for that job. 6. Some people might say that a pharmacist is just a seller of drugs. But we know that being a pharmacist is so much more than that. What is your opinion on the matter & how can we change the way pharmacy is perceived by people & eventually, by young students at schools? I believe that this is not a problem. The problem is when pharmacy graduates or students think that this is a problem. The solution lies with each and every one of us. The way you perceive yourself, the way you project yourself into the community, the way you speak of other pharmacists, this is what people retain in the community and what students in schools retain. If you highlight your role as a


pharmacist in any setting, then you will be able to show them how important your work as a healthcare professional is across all fields of pharmacy. 7. What advice do you offer for pharmacy undergraduate students who live under a lot of stress during their exam periods? You will be fine, don’t worry we all went through this! You need to invest in yourself to get a good product at the end. 

Do not deprive yourself from sleep. When you are sleep deprived, it is a vicious cycle, your retention of material won’t be the same.

When you notice your attention span has decreased, get up and go away from what you were doing, do something enjoyable, then come back and ease yourself back into studying.

8. In your opinion, what skills do you believe are needed to be successful in the pharmaceutical field? You should be patient care oriented, humble, passionate, perseverant, professional, and committed to being a lifelong learner. In this field, if you stop learning and you don’t stay up-to-date, then you will regress. Stagnation is impossible in the field of pharmacy. Once you stop moving forward, you will start moving backwards. 9. What is your biggest challenge in teaching? And how do you overcome this challenge? It is explaining the gray zones to students, when it is not a straightforward recommendation. Teaching students how to make clinical judgment is the biggest challenge. Students should learn the pillars of pharmacy, the absolute indications and the absolute contractions, but it is also very important to teach them to accept the


gray zones, to know when there is a right and wrong answer and to know when there is a gray answer and they have to make a judgment call. Another challenge is making students recognize how important the information they are learning. This is what Dr. Chamoun tells her students: “You don’t recognize how much you are actually retaining; you think you are going to forget it but then it stays in there.” 10. What is/are your proudest professional accomplishments? I have left a positive impact throughout the different institutions that I worked in, in both the US and in Lebanon. I am proud of my students who never give up on achieving their goals and work hard towards achieving them. Also, the launching of the clinical pharmacy practice model at LAU Medical Center-Rizk Hospital (LAUMC-RH), this is one of my greatest accomplishments. We integrated the clinical pharmacy practice model with faculty at the school of pharmacy and the pharmacists at LAUMC-RH. The hospital had no prior experience of clinical pharmacists with them on rounds. LAUMC-RH now embraces having clinical pharmacists with them on clinical rounds and appreciates all of the pharmacists that contribute to optimizing patient care.

It was a pleasure talking with Dr. Chamoun. After the interview, I have a better understanding of what I should focus on in pharmacy school. I hope you readers feel the same the way!

Zahraa Menhem Professional Year 2, Lebanese American University Joined LPSA in 2017


Dr. Hanine Mansour Dr. Hanine Mansour B.S. Pharm, PharmD., BCPS AQ Infectious Diseases, Lebanese American University, LAU

1. You are a doctor in the infectious disease field. What made you chose that domain in pharmacy? I like bugs and drugs. It is something in pharmacy that really attracted me, all these antibiotics, bacteria, fungus, viruses… So to me, it was a passion, I use to grasp this information quickly, and as a student I liked microbiology, so this is what attracted me.

2. Being very successful in your field, what is your advice to pharmacy students that are still a bit lost in choosing their career when they graduate? Basically my advice is to focus during your rotations, so don’t work during your rotations just to pass and get a good grade. Don’t focus too much on the grade, focus on learning and on what you need to know. For example, sometimes you pass a course with an A but once it is done, you don’t retain anything. Enjoy the material, don’t pay too much attention to the grade. Try to learn as much as possible, take advantage of being in a specific course, rather than just study for the exam. And this is a big mistake we did, and I did it when I was a student. Furthermore, try to apply what you learn. For example, if you have access to a community pharmacy, try to go shadow the pharmacists, see how they do things. Community pharmacy is not all about buying and selling, you can be as clinical as you want. Try to pay 12

attention to what is being dispensed, try to feel more with the patients, try to do some volunteer work in hospitals as well. This can help you to get more familiar with the medications, how they are being mixed and dispensed. The more you know about the medication, the easier your learning will be. 3. What makes your current field of work interesting to you? Students. It is fun to deal with different personalities. It is very satisfying. I work in the hospital and in the university. What is nice about seeing patients, is that you feel satisfied when the patients are feeling better and when they are out of the door going home. And the same thing with the students, especially when you see them going from P1 P2 P3 P4 and now they are your colleagues, you feel satisfied, you feel like you really accomplished something, so this is very rewarding.

4. Before reaching where they are right now, can you highlight what are the major challenges a fresh graduate might encounter in pharmacy? You will be lost; you don’t know what to do. When I finished my BS I was saying I don’t want to do a PharmD, I just want to work because I want to pay my expenses and I don’t want to count on my parents anymore. So I started looking to become a medical representative, I did several interviews, but then I was very lost. I started asking myself if this is really what I want to do for the rest of my life. I finally decided to do my PharmD, and later I was very happy that I chose to do it because I found a passion in my rotations. It was very rewarding to see patients healing and to be part of a team. And in my PharmD, I knew that I wanted to do a residency.


5. Some people might say that a pharmacist is just a seller of drugs. But we know that being a pharmacist is so much more than that. What is your opinion on the matter & how can we change the way pharmacy is perceived by people & eventually, by young students at schools? Definitely we don’t sell medications. If it is just about selling medications, there is no difference between a pharmacy and a supermarket, a cashier and a pharmacist. And to prove the opposite, we have to make the people aware about the pharmacist knowledge. And we need to earn respect. For example, if we are part of a community pharmacy, we should be in our pharmacy, promote our knowledge by different means. We should show care for the patients, not just get the medication from the shelf, put it in a bag and stamp it if they need social security! It is not about that. It is about getting the prescription, screening it, interacting with the patients. Try to communicate with the patient and feel with them. Make them feel that when they come to the pharmacy, they are not going to ask for the person who covers for you during your lunch, they will ask for you because you are knowledgeable and up to date. Moreover, do some promotions, not just cosmetic promotions, do a diabetes day, a cholesterol day, and an asthma day, show them how to use inhalers, accu-chek. Promote pharmacy this way if you are in the community pharmacy. It is easier in the hospital because you are part of a health care profession, but in the same time in the hospital, you have to make people aware. And this can be done by showing up on the floor, interacting with the nurses, with the physicians and patients. So we have to change this knowledge by making people aware of us, our faces, and who we are. It is on you. You are the new generation and you can do it, but you have to take the initiatives and be positive. Throw negativity behind your back and be positive.


6. What advices do you offer for pharmacy undergraduate students who live under a lot of stress during their exam periods? Study daily, do exercise, make time for yourself, and if you practice extracurricular activities continue to do it. Divide your time. You can make time for studying and time for going out. It is not because you have an exam that you just sit between four walls and study. This will put you in depression, you won’t focus and concentrate. Always do something that makes you happy, take half an hour break then you’ll be fresh and you’ll be ready to study. Don’t do overnights! This is terrible, it won’t give you the grade you want. On the other side, it will really make it worse. 7. In your opinion, what skills do you believe are needed to be successful in the pharmaceutical field? You need to have a strong personality, good leadership skills, patience, ability and willingness to learn and to admit that you did something wrong. You should also be able to learn from your mistakes. 8. What is your biggest challenge in teaching? And how do you overcome this challenge? Class silence. Let’s say I have a huge class of 75 people in it or so, and I have one or two persons to be the clown of the class. So they become parasites of the class, they disturb the classroom and people won’t be able to understand. So this a challenge. But I try to overcome it by ignoring them, try to make my voice higher, and to engage them in activities in the classroom, asking them questions, and having more interactions. Because some of these students are super smart and that is why they get bored. 9. What is/are your proudest professional accomplishments? There is nothing really specific. To me, I am a pharmacist, I am board certified, I worked hard to get what I want, but I still have a


lot to accomplish. I still have a lot to publish and I still have a lot to do research on. My goal is not to have a big administrative position, my goal is to be visible, to be known in my field, in the region and internationally. I am still working on this, I have publications, but I still need to do more. So nothing really big in terms of accomplishments, there is always more room for improvements.

Done by: Carla Allam Professional year 1, Lebanese American University (LAU) Joined LPSA in 2017


Dr. May Saab Dr. May Saab Assistant Professor of Pharmaceutical Technology Beirut Arab University, BAU

You can view the whole interview with Dr. May Saab by clicking on the link below. Interview with Dr. May Saab.

Done by: Nadine Baddredine 4 year student, Beirut Arab University (BAU). LPS committee, LPSA Joined in 2018. th


Dr. Mohamad Issa Dr. Mohamad Issa Assistant Professor of Pharmaceutics Beirut Arab University, BAU

You can view the whole interview with Dr. Mohamad Issa by clicking on the link below. Interview with Dr. Mohamad Issa.

Ahmad Badr 4 year student, Beirut Arab University (BAU) Chairperson & BAU representative, LPS committee, LPSA Joined in 2015. th



Students Interviews



Noor Noubani Beirut Arab University, BAU 4th year Pharmacy Student

1. Have you always wanted to become a pharmacist? No, I wanted to be a dentist but I am fearful of dentist so I decide to choose pharmacy. 2. Which top 3 qualities do you consider most important for a pharmacist to have, as an employee and as an employer? I think that the top three qualities are leadership, have good communication skills and be a life-long learner. 3. We all know the struggles of being a pharmacy student and the stress that comes with it. How do you handle that stress and what do you recommend to other students about how to manage their anxiety and stress? The most important things to do as a pharmacy student are to manage time correctly, study well, practice hobbies, don’t listen to negative people and stay cool and take it easy. 4. Why did you choose Beirut Arab University to study pharmacy? I choose Beirut Arab University because my mom graduated from BAU and she is a successful pharmacist. 5. What would you say to students that are still in school who you think about going into pharmacy?


I will advise them to apply if they are passionate about it and if they have high grades in school. 6. Where do you see yourself professionally 10 years from now? And what contribution will your field of choice add to the society? I see myself in my pharmacy counselling patient and to work as a health care provider and not considering pharmacy as business. In addition, I will go to Germany to do researches.

Done by: Ahmad Badr


Aya Saidi Beirut Arab University (BAU) 4th year Pharmacy Student

1. Have you always wanted to become a pharmacist? No, I wanted to become a mechanical engineer at first because I love physics but I discovered that I am oriented to chemistry more. 2. Which top 3 qualities do you consider most important for a pharmacist to have, as an employee and as an employer? I believe that the three most important qualities to have are ethics, intelligence and having good communication skills. 3. We all know the struggles of being a pharmacy student and the stress that comes with it. How do you handle that stress and what do you recommend to other students about how to manage their anxiety and stress? I recommend other students to manage their time efficiently, study on a daily basis, have extracurricular activities, drink lots of water and also, take advice from older people. 4. Why did you choose Beirut Arab University to study pharmacy? I chose Beirut Arab University because it is known to have a good pharmacy program and it will help me to be a successful pharmacist.


5. What would you say to students that are still in school who you think about going into pharmacy? I will advise them to apply if they are oriented to biology and chemistry and if they are able to study daily and to attend all courses. 6. Where do you see yourself professionally 10 years from now? And what contribution will your field of choice add to the society? I see myself a professor in pharmaceutics and I have my own pharmacy. In addition, I will work on my scientific research to provide it to the community.

Done by: Ahmad Badr


Doha Masri Beirut Arab University (BAU) 4th year Pharmacy Student

1. Have you always wanted to become a pharmacist? I always had a dream to become a successful pharmacist. My family preferred me to get involved in this major as well. My goal was to have a vital role in the health care system through providing cure, thus decreasing mortality rate in our country Lebanon, as pharmacists are health care professionals that are the most accessible to the public. 2. Which top 3 qualities do you consider most important for a pharmacist to have, as an employee and as an employer? A pharmacist must carry a package of qualities as long as he/she wants to be a successful and impressive employee. I think that every pharmacist not only needs a scientific mind, but also needs strong communication skills to interact with people and doctors too. An effective communication is essential while providing any medical information during counseling because this job requires one-on-one interaction with patients that often have questions and concerns. In fact, some research has started to suggest that the higher a health care provider’s emotional intelligence, which includes communication skills, the better health outcomes for a patient! A pharmacist must also be honest and keep the patient’s benefit as a priority. Honesty and trust worthy comes from confidentiality and the fact of respecting patient’s privacy. As an employer, knowing which traits an effective employer should have is an integral part of success. An employer- as a leader- must be self-motivated by a deeply embedded desire to achieve for the sake of patients’ benefit and to impress employees at the pharmacy and self-motivating them as well. Standards are also essential in employers as the latter hold themselves and people around including employees to a higher 25

standard than most, both on personal and professional level. Confidence and courage has to do with an employee’s inner perception of his/her ability to fulfill a particular role at the pharmacy and is built through experiences and dealings. Above all, the employer has to be accountable; accept responsibility for the outcomes expected whether good or bad at the pharmacy site. Let me note that being “Ethical” is a vital trait, both a pharmacy employer and an employee must have. 3. We all know the struggles of being a pharmacy student and the stress that comes with it. How do you handle that stress and what do you recommend to other students about how to manage their anxiety and stress? Pharmacy school is stressful. Struggles are always there. It’s all about how each pharmacist can handle that stress in a way or another. Personally, I handle it by work and time management. This latter is the key for every mission. I recommend pharmacy students to prioritize their tasks by making a “to-do” list to ensure completing all tasks. Another recommendation is exam relaxation tip by taking better care of yourself by eating and sleeping right which will help keep alert and focused and help fight off illness. I also advice pharmacy students to study daily or at least weekly to avoid pressure and fight/flight response during exam periods. 4. Why did you choose Beirut Arab University to study pharmacy? I chose studying pharmacy at BAU as it is simply perfect in every aspect. I prefer not to count what is countless. Being awarded by with the international accreditation status by the Canadian council for accreditation wont ever let me regret my choice. 5. What would you say to students that are still in school who you think about going into pharmacy? To students who are still in school and think of joining the faculty of pharmacy, I’d like to motivate their desire and advise them to


make sure they don’t slack in pharmacy school just because someone convinced them to or just because they think it’s the best choice regardless if they really “want” it or not. 6. Where do you see yourself professionally 10 years from now? And what contribution will your field of choice add to the society? Honestly, there is no specific goal in mind at the time, but I see myself where every ambition would take me, and I’d take advantage of any opportunity that makes it possible for me to glitter; a PharmD, master degrees, a doctor of pharmacy… Actually any field of choice in pharmacy will benefit society. The profession’s purpose has evolved with new medical and pharmaceutical knowledge and technological advancements. The traditional role of dispensing medications has been expanded to include developing and managing drug distribution systems that provide access points to consumers and assure drug safety and compliance with legal and professional standards. These new responsibilities have required pharmacists to acquire expertise in the storage data, distribution, and inventor, control functions, and the management of data for drug histories, patient records, quality assurance programs and drug information services.

Done by: Nadine Baddredine


Ghida Itani Beirut Arab University (BAU) 5th year Pharmacy Student

1. Have you always wanted to become a pharmacist? No, I have always wanted to be engaged in the health care profession but not as a pharmacist because of the stereotypical image that we all had about his/her role. 2. Which top 3 qualities do you consider most important for a pharmacist to have, as an employee and as an employer? Whether an employee or an employer a pharmacist should always be trustworthy, ethical and understanding. He/she should abide by the code of ethics in the way of interaction with the patient or with other health care profession moreover; he/she should provide an atmosphere of trust so that the patient can always rely on, and finally the pharmacist should always be understanding because people consider him/her as their own psychologist whom they can tell anything without paying. 3. We all know the struggles of being a pharmacy student and the stress that comes with it. How do you handle that stress and what do you recommend to other students about how to manage their anxiety and stress? There is no way to run from the stress that you might face as a pharmacy student however; what one can do in their free time is to exercise, go on an adventure or do an activity. This type of stress is only bound to us, any one will face stress however; the important thing is to be able to manage it. Other way also may include contacting people you feel you can talk to and let it out this will make the person feel more relaxed. Finally, one can also pray it is also used as a way to relieve stress when you contact GOD.


4. Why did you choose Beirut Arab University to study pharmacy? I’ve been attracted to BAU because it is one of the few universities that has this huge diversity of students. You can find students and professors from different countries where many cultural values may be exchanged, one may also find people of different economical class which also make people more aware that money is not everything and that the inside of the person is what counts. Finally; I’ve chosen BAU because unlike most of the universities it doesn’t have a political agenda and neither are there any political acts. 5. What would you say to students that are still in school who you think about going into pharmacy? I would say what’s better than knowing what drugs can cure most of the diseases. I would highly recommend my major because it requires continuous education and it will never stop. You will never be able to know everything about pharmacology however; there will always be something new to research about. 6. Where do you see yourself professionally 10 years from now? And what contribution will your field of choice add to the society? I am working on evolving the role of the pharmacist by implementing it at any practice site. In 10 years I hope to see myself a clinical pharmacist on the hospital floor with different health care professions discussing patient’s condition and providing my recommendation for treatment. I hope to be able to implement to role of pharmacist by checking drug-drug interactions, managing side effects and checking the medication’s efficacy in medical centers.

Done by: Nadine Baddredine


Rita Hlal Rita Hlal Professional Pharmacy Year 1 Lebanese American University (LAU)

1. Have you always wanted to become a pharmacist? Not always, I decided few months before applying to the university. 2. Which top 3 qualities do you consider most important for a pharmacist to have, as an employee AND as an employer? As an employee, the top 3 qualities for a pharmacist to have are confidentiality, responsibility and caring. And as an employer, a pharmacist should be responsible, confident and honest. 3. We all know the struggles of being a pharmacy student & the stress that comes with it. How do you handle that stress & what do you recommend to other students about how to manage their anxiety and stress? I believe everyone should have a hobby or at least to exercise. Students should have a break before studying. I do believe that studying three hours per day with full focus and productivity is sufficient. 4. Why did you choose LAU to study pharmacy? LAU is accredited. I also wanted a university that offers a PharmD program. LAU is one of the best school of pharmacy in the Middle East. 5. What would you say to students that are still in school who think about going into pharmacy?


Of course do it if you love the medical field and if you see yourself as a pharmacist in the future. It is fun and exhausting in the same time, but it is very interesting to deal with drugs and how they function in the body. 6. Where do you see yourself professionally 10 years from now? And what contribution will your field of choice add to the society? 10 years from now, I see myself as either a PhD. holder and a doctor of pharmacy or a doctor in my own lab. Hopefully, I will find a new medication through research and a possible cure to Cancer.

Done by: Carla Allam


Monica Charro Professional Pharmacy Year 1 Lebanese American University

1. Have you always wanted to become a pharmacist? At the beginning, it wasn’t my first option, I was a pre-med student. But then when I realized that medicine is not actually for me, I tried to search for a major in the same field and I found that pharmacy is very interesting. Moreover, we are moving towards the need of more pharmacists as nowadays doctors only diagnose and clinical pharmacists are the one who choose the actual medication and the dose. 2. Which top 3 qualities do you consider most important for a pharmacist to have, as an employee AND as an employer? As an employee, the pharmacist should be honest, caring and knowledgeable. And to be an employer, the pharmacist should be trustworthy, honest and hardworking. 3. We all know the struggles of being a pharmacy student & the stress that comes with it. How do you handle that stress & what do you recommend to other students about how to manage their anxiety and stress? I believe that managing your time is really important. I personally don’t study 24/7. I spend most of my time either sleeping, relaxing, watching movies and going out with my friends. But I always find time to balance between my hobbies, my social life and my studies. I believe that to deal with stress and anxiety you should know how to manage your time.


4. Why did you choose LAU to study pharmacy? I chose LAU because it has an accredited program. Plus, it is the best university in Lebanon that offers a program in English. 5. What would you say to students that are still in school who think about going into pharmacy? I would tell them that pharmacy is actually a nice major for people who like it but I believe that students in high schools should have the opportunity to explore their options through internships. In most cases you often believe that this is the major that you like and once you are in it, and that you have experienced it, you might realize that this not the major for you. So I would really recommend students that are considering pharmacy to search more about the fields of work other than just opening a pharmacy and to actually try to find an internship and get ideas about jobs they might be facing in the future. 6. Where do you see yourself professionally 10 years from now? And what contribution will your field of choice add to the society? I am really interested in the business aspect of the pharmacy, so 10 years from now, I see myself working in a pharmaceutical company or a cosmetic company in the business department like sales and management. I believe that a good business will lead to good selling of the product, and that the business of a company is as important as the product. So I really hope that I will be able to market a good product that will cure or heal many people.

Done by: Carla Allam


Stephanie Mourad Stephanie Mourad Professional Pharmacy Year 2, Lebanese American University.

1. Have you always wanted to become a pharmacist? No, to be honest, but what I can say now that I’m into my 4th year of pharmacy is that I learned to love it. I went into this major because I a bit influenced by some of my family members, they motivated me to study this field, but I wasn’t very sure about it. It took me some time to like it and appreciate it. During the summer of my first year, I did an internship in a pharmacy and I liked the most the contact with the patients. I felt that I had something to give them, something I can teach them with my knowledge and with what I have learnt. After this internship, I started to like this field. In other words, no I didn’t want to become a pharmacist but whatever the reason was, that’s not important to me. Now I’m focusing on what I like about because I’m happy that I’m majoring in it. 2. Which top 3 qualities do you consider most important for a pharmacist to have, as an employee AND as an employer? The pharmacist should be patient with the clients that come with concerns, fears and questions. Also, patient with the employees and the interns, because at the end of the day the pharmacist has a job to do but also, he/she must teach the future generations. In addition to that, the pharmacist should respect the patient’s ideas and thoughts and be dedicated to what he/she is doing because pharmacists especially community pharmacists they spend and offer a lot of their personal time to invest in the pharmacy and be there for their clients.


3. We all know the struggles of being a pharmacy student & the stress that comes with it. How do you handle that stress & what do you recommend to other students about how to manage their anxiety and stress? Everyone of us deals with stress in a unique way. Our program at LAU specifically, is very tough, demanding and tiring. However, once you know the tricks, and I will give you some advices, you will be fine. The material is not that hard, yet there are of course some challenging courses. The hardest part is to be able to organize your tasks and manage your time to study everything and revise it more than once. I would recommend students to listen well in class, grasp as much information as they can from the first time they get in contact with the material. Also, to study regularly, not to memorize the chapter but to read it so you can be familiar with the material before the exam comes and read it again and eventually have time to memorize it and revise it, because learning is a process, it is not a one step, it is made up of many steps. You should start by reading, getting familiar with the material to eventually memorize it and feel comfortable and confident to use what you memorized when the exam comes. 4. Why did you choose LAU to study pharmacy? I chose LAU simply because I come from a French background. I was curious to try an American system based university. I was hesitating between USJ and LAU, I also visited BAU, but LAU has many advantages like the PharmD program, but form me it was just about trying the American system. 5. What would you say to students that are still in school who think about going into pharmacy? I would advise them to do, first, an internship at grade 10, to know a bit what it is about. Read well about the pharmacy program offered by the different universities. May be have a discussion with a pharmacy student or a pharmacist in general to know about it. This


field is very interesting and it’s full of opportunities even though it is saturated by now, but with the BS we get, we still have many open doors for example: opening your own pharmacy, going into business or industry, research or education. One important last point is to make sure you like what you are doing, because for me if you like what you are doing, you will excel. 6. Where do you see yourself professionally 10 years from now? And what contribution will your field of choice add to the society? It is vey bad timing to answer this question, because we are starting to figure out about what we will be doing in our future. However, what I’m sure about is that I want to be in something innovative, I don’t know yet the exact domain. It can be business, education or having my own pharmacy, I don’t know yet. Nowadays, the BS degree is very limited, so I will apply to PharmD program because I think it is an important degree to have and I like. I hope I can contribute in something in future because I like to be always present for my patients and to educate them about their drug therapy, so they can make the best out of it. For me, at the end of the day, each one of us on Earth has a mission. You are not here to make money, become a star or be famous. For me, you are here to make this world a better place like be here for others and by doing this you feel better about yourself.

Done by: Yasmeen Al Hamwi


Rayan Akkawi Rayan Akkawi President of LPSA, Professional Pharmacy Year 3, Lebanese American University. 1. Have you always wanted to become a pharmacist? As a child/teenager I would always open any medication’s package insert and read about the medication (even though I would barely get some scientific terms) before taking it even if it was indicated just for a mild headache or some stomach cramps. I was eager to learn about the science of creating a small pill that can actually save people’s lives or help them live a good quality of life. 2. What are the top 3 qualities you consider most important for a pharmacist to have as an employee and employer? A pharmacist whether an employee or an employer has to be: ethical, caring, and passionate. 3. How do you handle the stress and what do you recommend for students about how to manage their stress and anxiety? For me, the life of a pharmacy student has been pretty tough especially that I’m the type of person who always wants to have the best of both lives: pharmacy life and social life. During my first 2 years in pharmacy school, I found it hard to manage between both and so I would dedicate all my time for pharmacy which in fact increased the stress. But as I went through my professional pharmacy years, I realized how much it is important to contribute to the society, work on myself as a person, develop my strong qualities, communication skills, my connections with people, and work on my weaknesses in order to improve. Being a pharmacist isn’t just about knowing your medications and their side effects. It is about being that inspiring healthcare professional who cares enough about the patient’s health and life who want to really make


a change. Managing your stress all begins with a good time management. Do not waste any minute of your day. When you’re out having fun with some friends, don’t waste your time worrying and when you’re studying endless medications make sure to give it your full focus. There is always time for everything but managing your time is the key. 4. Why did you choose LAU as your university? I chose LAU because of its accredited PharmD. Program. 5. What would you say for your students who are still in school and thinking of going into pharmacy school? I would tell these students: If you are passionate about pharmacy, dedicated to always be up to date in the medical field after you graduate, and care to make a change in patients’ lives, go for it! 6. Where do you see yourself professionally 10 years from now? And what contributions will your field of choice add to the society? That is probably the toughest questions of all at this point in time. 10 years from now, I would want to have fulfilled my PhD studies which will allow me to go into academia with a part time job in the United Nations. I want to contribute into the research of a new medical product that can improve the lives of many people. Working with the UN will also give me the opportunity to be involved in projects that can ensure healthy lives for the unprivileged, promote their well-being, increase their access to clean water and hygiene, provide them with access to vaccination and medications, eradicate the spread of infectious diseases or HIV/AIDS, etc… Done by: Yasmeen Al Hamwi


LPSA Newsletter Articles – Depression & Suicide in Lebanon


“Is Medical Therapy Enough for Treating Depression?� By Nathalie Joelle Abi Saleh

The rate of depression and suicide in Lebanon is increasing at an alarming rate. However, very few people get the optimal treatment for treating their depression. Treatment usually includes a combination of medical therapy and psychotherapy. However, still too many caregivers in our society fail to include psychotherapy in the management of their depression. This is not to say that psychotherapy is absolutely necessary for treating depression, rather, depression can be treated by either medication, psychotherapy, or a combination of both. The decision depends on each patient’s case, and what might work for one patient may not work for the other. It is then important to recognize that too many Lebanese patients with depression do not undergo psychotherapy when it might actually benefit them.

Up until our days, most people do not believe in psychotherapy. In fact, physicians and patients may have lost their trust in the field as unqualified professionals would provide the wrong treatment for patients. Indeed, it is only recently that the domain of psychotherapy became regulated by the government. This was done by introducing the Syndicate of Psychotherapists and Psychoanalysts in Lebanon as well as the Colloquium of Clinical Psychology. Another reason for the low rate of psychotherapy is the associated cost. As a matter of fact, Lebanese insurance companies do not cover psychotherapy. As the costs of a single session begins at $50, it is then understandable that most patient would not follow with regular visits to a therapist. How do both medical therapy and psychotherapy benefit patients with depression? Antidepressants work by balancing neurotransmitters in the brain (Serotonin, Norepinephrine and Dopamine) thus regulating mood. Psychotherapy, on the other hand, and more particularly


Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), educates the patient on how to control his negative thinking and replace it with healthier patterns of thought. At the core of CBT is the assumption that one’s thoughts, emotions, and behavior are interlinked and affect each other. Psychotherapy can therefore be a useful treatment of depression in some patients as it provides them with coping mechanisms, tips, anger and stress management, and social skills.

Is medical therapy enough for treating depression? Well, it depends on different patient presentations and cases. Some patients might benefit from antidepressants or psychotherapy alone, while some on a combination of both. However, it is important for us pharmacists to educate patients and health care professionals on the availability and benefits of both treatment modalities.


Article by Aicha El Masri “Why Lebanon?” By Aicha El Masri

As Lebanese, I believe we have made some progress when it comes to depression and its most serious outcome: suicide; Suicide remains to be one of the most stigmatized mental health issues, but at least we talk of it more often. We are forming more mental health related NGO’s. In 2017, Lebanon even had its first national suicide helpline launched by the NGO “Embrace”. It is also worth noting that just like the human heart, the increase in supply is due to the increase in demand or in other words the increase in Lebanese suicide rates. ISF sources have confirmed to The Daily Star newspaper that for every foreigner, 5 Lebanese citizens commit suicide. So, the real question is: “Why Lebanon?” Despite staying above the fray of the Arab spring, Lebanon continues to be jolted by political instability. It cannot but be prone to political consequences due to the ongoing Syrian civil war and the recent Lebanese-Saudi Arabian tension. On the other hand, instability has become part of our culture. Instability dates back, shortly after our independence, to the 1958 Lebanon crisis. We have been rocked by Israeli bombings and/or invasions years 1967, 1978, 1981, 1982, 1993, 1996, and 2006. The Palestinian insurgency in South Lebanon evolved into the wider Lebanese Civil War in 1975. During the Lebanese civil war, we were subject to Syrian occupation up until the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafic Hariri in 2005. The problem isn’t one war; it is a continuum of social stress, violence, and fear. Political violence has the ability of inflicting mental trauma on individuals or populations. Depression and suicide are prominent examples of psychological trauma that were positively correlated with increasing conflict cruelty. In addition, many Lebanese keep and bear arms to numb feelings of insecurity. Chaotic use of these weapons can result from traumainduced anger and aggression. 42

The increasingly complex and fragile insecurity situation has become integrated into almost every Lebanese speech: "‫ "ﻧﺤﻦ ﻋﻠﻰ ﻣﻔﺘﺮق طﺮق‬or “we lie at a cross road”. Generations of Lebanese citizens are growing up in a toxic environment in which their right to proper healthcare, insurance, education, water supply, and economic growth is dependent on politicians who drill the idea that they do not know what to do. According to the spectator index and as per a study carried out by the World Economic Forum, Lebanon has ranked 2nd for most wasteful government spending year 2017. One of our politicians even took it to twitter to comment: “Keep it up guys. Always at the top.” The Lebanese unemployment rate is on the rise. Waste management has been a problem since summer 2015. The electricity sector infrastructure has been damaged ever since the civil war (1975-1990). Lebanese electricity consumers currently pay the highest electricity bills in the region while experiencing the lowest quality service. Yet still, we have a highly money wasting, inoperative, and complaining government. The stress some Lebanese have to endure is the result of their own insecurities that are further aggravated with the negative energy politicians transcend in the media. The after-math of chronic stress and open-ended uncertainty is serious particularly due to their contribution to depression. Therefore, health, wealth, and economic changes are vital to maintain security and deviate from the net national vulnerability. A game changer could’ve been as simple as saying no to the same politicians, but it’s not. The population is knowledgeable, vis-à-vis the government, of what it wants but is indifferent about what is being done. The Lebanese anemic system could only be unraveled by a public mentality shift and a change of culture. Unfortunately, both are almost impossible to be done given Lebanese religious affiliations and external involvement.


Article by Elie Karam “Will nootropics help you get better grades?� By Elie Karam While the pressure of success can be an effective motivator, it can also be a heavy burden on today’s college students, driving them to dangerous lengths to make the grade. High performance individuals from college students to Silicon Valley are using nootropics to get ahead of the competition. The term "study drugs" or nootropics refers to prescription drugs used to increase concentration and stamina for the purpose of studying or cramming. Study drugs are prescription stimulant medications that are used improperly by a person with a prescription, or more often, illegally by a person without a prescription. For people with ADD or ADHD, these drugs may have a calming effect because the drugs increase dopamine in the brain, and it is believed that ADHD sufferers lack adequate dopamine. For those without ADHD, these drugs are more likely to cause restlessness and euphoria because these people already have enough dopamine. One of the most popular pharmaceutical nootropic is called Modafinil, which is known as a "eugeroic", or wakefulness-promoting agent. Modafinil is praised for its ability to improve reaction time, logical reasoning, and problem-solving. The drug is clinically prescribed for a number of conditions including sleep apnea, narcolepsy, and shift work sleep disorder. Amphetamines are a class of pharmaceuticals that include Adderall, dextroamphetamine, and lisdexamphetamine. The drugs were also demonstrated to improve episodic memory, working memory, and some aspects of attention in the general population. At low doses, they improve memory consolidation, recall of information, and motivation to perform tasks that require a high degree of attention. Ritalin is structurally different from amphetamines and works through different mechanisms, although produces similar effects. Both


amphetamines and Ritalin improve cognitive functions, albeit only at lower doses. At high doses, they stimulate other neural pathways not involved in learning that effectively cancel their positive effects on cognition. Piracetam is well studied and is credited by its users with boosting their memory, sharpening their focus, heightening their immune system, even bettering their personalities. The most worrisome risk of using study drugs is the potential for dependence and addiction. People who use these drugs only on occasion to study are much more likely to crash once the drug has worn off. Study drugs have short-term risks like increased blood pressure, increased heart rate, nervousness, and insomnia. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Adderall can cause hallucinations, impulsive and anti-social behavior, paranoia, and irritability. And then, there are the long-term risks. Adderall and other prescription stimulants have been known to cause adverse side effects when used with antidepressants. When used simultaneously with antidepressants, which are used to treat, anxiety and eating disorders, study drugs can produce life-threatening effects. There Are Healthy Ways to Help You Work Harder for Longer Creatine is a perfect tool for increasing ATP. One study found that creatine could reduce fatigue by up to 90 percent. Theanine works synergistically with caffeine. Together, the two increase reaction time, memory, and mental endurance. Other alternatives include CoQ10, Glutathione and Nicotinamide riboside. When it comes to nutraceuticals and herbal supplements, recent studies appear to be contradictory. Some data do support the memoryenhancing effects of such plants as Gingko biloba, Asian ginseng, and Bacopa monnieri, but systematic reviews do not find convincing evidence of their effectiveness. It is likely that herbal supplements may work well over longer periods of time and improve cognitive abilities, but in the short term, their effects are not particularly obvious.


Article by Yasmine Naja “Buried beneath the burden of your woes?” By Yasmine Naja

We live in an era where our lives from the most mundane to the most sophisticated things are controlled and restrained by society. This definitely leads to people thinking they are not adequate enough resulting in depression which, in extreme cases, causes suicidal thoughts. To start with, society has impacted all individuals but in divergent ways; stealing the essence and uniqueness of each human being and turning us all into indistinguishable beings. Why is it so onerous and grueling to escape the norm and amend it? The sole explanation is that we are afraid, we dread the thought of being left out, or the thought of abandonment, rejection and loneliness. In fact, “society” has a couple of rules that are mandatory if a person wants to fit in, varying from: “dress to impress” instead of emboldening us to have our own, idiosyncratic style to lying about achievements to approach society’s expectations instead of being gratified of every small accomplishment. In other words, our society is fabricating deaden people with somewhat robotic characteristics and denuded of profound significance and motive. The question that encircles one’s mind is how can we be so effortlessly lured into society’s trap? How can our pursuit of happiness and welfare be deluded this easily?


Article by Ghida Raad “Beyond Baby Blues� By Ghida Raad Have you wondered why some mothers feel sad rather than joyful after giving birth? Many new moms experience baby blues which include mood swings, anxiety, and crying spells that typically go away after a week or two. However, when these mild symptoms last longer, they become severe. One study of 10,000 moms with newborns found that 1 in 7 get the severe form of "baby blues" known as postpartum depression. Postpartum depression may start within the first few weeks after childbirth or up to 6 months after birth. Mothers experience severe signs and symptoms which include, difficulty bonding with their baby, insomnia, excessive crying, decreased ability to focus and think clearly. This will lead to withdrawals from family and social activities, along with feelings of worthlessness and guilt. In addition, they could reach to a point of having thoughts of harming themselves or their baby. Thus, they should seek immediate help from a healthcare professional and reach out to a close friend or loved one. There are causes and risk factors for postpartum depression but with treatment most women get better. Physical changes is one of the causes; Female hormones (estrogen and progesterone) drop dramatically after childbirth which contribute to depression. Also, thyroid hormones may drop sharply and lead to fatigue and sadness. Another cause for postpartum depression is emotional issues such as sleep deprivation, anxiety, and struggling to control over their life. Moreover, the following factors that increase the risk of postpartum depression are: history of depression, financial problems, unwanted pregnancy, and other stressful events. On further notice, if the mothers are left untreated, complications will occur where postpartum depression becomes a chronic depressive disorder. Also, the fathers will be affected with an increased risk of having depression. Last but not least, their children will likely to suffer from sleeping and eating disorders as well as attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).


To prevent postpartum depression, careful monitoring should be done during and after pregnancy with the doctor. The doctor will monitor signs and symptoms of depression and will have the mothers complete a depression-screening questionnaire. If depression is detected, the treatments would be psychotherapy with or without antidepressants. Psychotherapy will help the mothers to cope with their feelings, solve problems, and respond to situations in a positive way. As for antidepressants, they will correct the chemical imbalances of neurotransmitters in the brain such as Serotonin causing it to be more available. According to an article Antidepressant Use During Breastfeeding by the Pharmaceutical Journal, the safest antidepressants are Sertraline and Paroxetine from the (SSRI) family due to its low levels of exposure via milk and due to the short-half life limiting its accumulation in the breast milk, respectively. All in all, mothers must be aware to distinguish between mild "baby blues" symptoms and severe "baby blues" symptoms. The causes and risk factors of postpartum depression can be managed with the appropriate treatment as well as adopting a healthy lifestyle, avoiding isolation, making time for themselves and asking for help to the people who are close to. Finally, the best way to take care of their baby is to take care of themselves.




IPS News IPSF News By Joelle Jabbour Antibiotics “Handle antibiotics with care” is an important topic addressed by the World Health Organization in order to encourage the patients to follow 3 major recommendations. First, it is necessary to always follow a qualified health care professional’s advices in order to be more aware of the benefits and side effects of any type of antibiotics. Second, it is recommended to not share antibiotics with any other relatives. Finally, a good hygiene is the key in order to prevent infection and diseases.

Date: November 19, 2017.


HIV and AIDS Started since 1988, on the 1st of December of each year, people around the world wear a red ribbon as a support against HIV. Their main purpose is to unite, fight, and support patients living with HIV and to commemorate those who have died from this virus. HIV, better known as Human Immunodeficiency Virus, is a virus that attacks the body’s immune system by targeting the CD4 cells; and therefore destroying our body’s natural defense against diseases. If the patient is left untreated, a set of symptoms known as AIDS will occur leading to lifethreatening infections and illnesses such as cancer. The World Health Organization listed 7 major recommendations to follow in order for each one of us to reduce the risk of getting HIV and AIDS: you should always keep contact with your health care professional about pre and post exposure prophylaxis. Before practicing safe sex by using condoms, it is important to test the HIV status of both your partner and yourself. Also, limiting the number of sexual partners and staying away from drugs are important steps to follow. Finally, like every disease, it is necessary to follow correctly the treatment provided if your major goals revolve around living a longer healthier life and reducing the chance of transmitting HIV. Date: December 1, 2017.


New reforms for pharmacists to support women The pharmaceutical industry is taking a step forward. Indeed, the FIP directed the board’s attention to the value of pharmacists in supplying emergency contraception and promoting breastfeeding. The federation also raised again the issue of medicines shortages as well as giving comment on the WHO’s general program of work for 2019-2023.

Date: 29 January 2018


The Prince Mahidol Award Conference 2018 IPSF is participating in the Prince Mahidol Award Conference 2018 in Bangkok, Thailand. Under the theme “"Making the World Safe from the Threats of Emerging Infectious Diseases" the conference will provides the opportunity to show the importance of inter-professional collaboration in fighting against infectious diseases. Date: 31 January 2018

The Importance of mHealth MHealth (mobile health) which is a general term for the use of mobile phones and other wireless technology in medical care may grow in importance. Indeed, the IPSF supports the idea with the primary objectives of improving coverage of healthcare and access to health information. However, the IPSF believe that there are several important aspects to consider in the implementation of mHealth such as efficiency and safe care delivery.

Date: 27 January 2018


Pharmacy at a Glance The state of pharmacy around the world was published in FIP’s “Pharmacy at a glance: 2015-2017�. An interesting overview of the pharmaceutical domain in the labor force answering 8 specific questions: 1. How many pharmacists are there? 2. Where do pharmacists work? 3. Are medicines available online and from where? 4. Where may pharmacists select and dispense a generic medicine? 5. What does access to community pharmacies and community pharmacists look like? 6. What services are community pharmacies providing and remunerated for beyond dispensing? 7. What does access to hospital pharmacies and hospital pharmacists look like? 8. What services hospital pharmacies providing?

Date: 31 January 2018


142nd Executive Board The 142nd Executive Board Meeting of the World Health Organization (EBM) was held in WHO Headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland from the 22nd to the 27th of January 2018. IPSF had the privilege to be invited to this meeting, and therefore have formed a group of delegate to attend and discuss the topic included at the 142nd Executive Board. 1. Meeting with the IPSF Designated Technical Officer about the WHO and IPSF collaboration, which was established in January 2017 and how IPSF has a major impact on WHO’s campaigns. 2. Meeting with Partnership for International Red Cross and Red Crescent (ICRC) about the expectations regarding IPSF’s further involvement. It includes issues about Medicine Shortage, pharmacists in war zones, and people with no medical supplies. It has a main goal to empower pharmacists to act correctly during crucial times and not only during peaceful days and to provide medical supplies for those who are in need. 3. Meeting with Alliance Health for Promotion about the Youth Hub plan which will include articles written by members. 4. Meeting with the World Federation Public Health Association about collaborations for the Rome 2020 congress. In order to reach student involvement, IPSF should choose one good student lecturer to represent them and have the possibility to present a topic of high relevance for pharmaceutical profession even though it is not well-known by the public. 5. Meeting with MAGI, a pilot center for the diagnosis of rare genetic diseases, which has its diagnosis and research laboratories mainly found in Bolzano and Rovereto, and its center in Tirana, Albania in order to collect and control donor blood and to welcome patients in its medical outpatient clinic. The goal of this meeting is to offer IPSF members the chance to work in


MAGI’s laboratories and having their work published in PubMed. 6. Meeting with the Alzheimer's Disease International (ADI) about the involvement of IPSF in the conference that will be help in Chicago in July 2018. IPSF will have the chance to present via a speech or a poster their scientific research on Alzheimer’s disease. 7. Meeting with the United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) about internship availabilities for IPSF members. The overall benefits of the partnership of IPSF with WHO are both on the global level: first, to empower IPSF’s involvement in the Public Health sector and second, to strengthen the pharmacist’ position within the healthcare workforce. Date: January 22nd-27th, 2018


64th IPSF World Congress in Mendoza, Argentina “I made amazing friend and learned a lot about different cultures. All of the activities and conferences were very enriching, practical and strengthened our knowledge” Have you ever thought about learning valuable things concerning the Pharmacy domain? Making new long lasting friends from all around the world? And discovering a different culture at the same time? If your answer is YES, the 64th IPSF World Congress organized in Mendoza, Argentina is the right place for you. With the ambition and the determination of a great country, one the South American greatest country is proudly hosting from the 30th of July to the 8th of August a World Congress that will reunite all the IPSF family. This year the main theme of this event is “FROM LAB TO COUNTER: The Different Pharmacists' Profiles and Their Constant Contribution to Global Health". The event will consist of two mottos: Scientific symposium and Educational Symposium. 1. The scientific symposium will discuss the subject “Pharmacists and Their Importance in the Application and Development of New Scientific Technologies”. We all know that the success of every new technology in the Biomedical and Health domain lies in knowing about them and in the awareness of their application. Pharmacists nowadays are having an important role in the innovation of health technologies. It is in the duty of every pharmacist to ensure that the upcoming technologies are for the good of the patients to the treatment and preventions of diseases.

2. The educational symposium will discuss the subject “Pharmacists and Their Role as Teacher within the Health System”. As the pharmacists are being seen as “the experts in medicine” is it natural that they are the best suited to educate the general population and other health professionals about the correct use and management of medicines. Through the


application of scientific concepts acquired in academic training and professional experience, pharmacists play a pivotal role in educating about the health risks and benefits as well as the adverse effects associated with the use of medications, raising awareness about their misuse or inadequate management and, and always ensuring adequate understanding to guarantee the safety and security of their patients. If you wish to fully participate in the IPSF World Congress you will have the opportunity to show your determination by participating in a competition where the best three projects will be awarded. The participants who wished to be part of the competition during the IPSF World Congress will have to submit a precise work according to the main theme of the two symposiums already discussed. Another reason not to miss this opportunity! Most importantly, The IPSF World Congress is not only about learning but also to know more about the beautiful city of Mendoza and its people. During the event the participants will have the opportunity to assist to the famous Vendimia Festival and the mysterious Carnaval Party, an old Argentinian tradition. During the numerous free times given, participants will have the chance to know more about the Capital of Wine. Located at the foot of the highest mountains of the Andes, is the door to discovering incredible landscapes and dynamic excursions that invite you to rediscover yourself with nature and, why not, with yourself. To know more about the program kindly checked this link:


7th Eastern Mediterranean Pharmaceutical Symposium (EMPS) in Amman, Jordan This year, the EMPS will take place where it all began: Jordan. In 2010, it all started as a local organization of young and ambitious Jordanian pharmacist to, nowadays, an international organization unifying the Arab regions who share the same passions. In the Middle East, pharmacy practice continues to evolve, although its progress is hampered by many challenges. The EMPS main aim, through a 5 to 8 days international event, is to enhance the knowledge of pharmacist students and recent graduates all along of this enriching experience. This year the main theme of the organization is “A deeper insight into neuropharmacology�. In EMPS 2018, the aim is at equipping future pharmacists with basic knowledge and deeper insight into neuropharmacology. Drugs that act on the nervous system, including antidepressant, antianxiety, anticonvulsant, and antipsychotic agents, are among the most widely prescribed medications. So it is of importance for ambitious pharmacists to understand and relate the molecular findings with the behavioral influences of drugs to better target neurological and psychiatric disorders. By the end of the conference, through many debates and workshops, every participant would be expected to share a strong base of knowledge and an everexpanding enthusiasm toward neuropharmacology! The EMPS program is not only about learning but also to know more about the beautiful city of Amman and its people. During the event, the participants will also have the opportunity to discover this fascinating city and its contrast. Visiting the rock carved rose city of Petra (one of the new 7 wonders of the world) and the Dead Sea (the lowest point on 59

earth) are some of the many occasions of the event. On top of that, the applicants will experience the traditional Jordanian cuisine in a way to make this experience unforgettable.

If you are willing to expand your knowledge in the pharmacy domain while learning about a new culture, the EMPS 2018 is definitely the right place for you. EMPS 2018 official website is launched: Kindly check it out for more details.


IPW Experience By Joelle Jabbour & Rouba Nasser Lebanese American University - 3rd year Pharmacy Students

Nowadays, it’s very common for people to think that building a carrier is solely dependent on scoring high on your exams. But they sometimes tend to forget that what’s outside these universities walls make up the person you’re going to be in the future. And as Julius Caesar once said “Experience is the teacher of all things”. As such, we believe that extracurricular activities are as momentous as the technical information you learn through your courses. This is why, when we first learned about the Second International Pharmaceutical Week held in Jakarta, Indonesia, we couldn’t miss the chance to embark on such an adventure that would open up our horizons not only on the professional level, but also on the personal one. IPW was held in the Indonesian Medical Education and Research Institute (IMERI) and consisted of workshops, symposiums and competitions. We attended 6 very interesting and fruitful symposiums that were presented by Indonesian and Malaysian experts who were nothing but a blast to listen to. The six themes treated were: “Antimicrobial stewardship program in hospital setting and multidisciplinary team”, “The advantage of genetic profiling to reach effective and efficient pharmacotherapy”, “Pharmacist specialization: an advancement towards better pharmacy practice”, “Role of natural killer cell in cancer”, “Monoclonal Antibody in Migraine” and “Recombinant DNA technology as potential novel cancer treatment”. Every subject presented was of a great significance to our field and it was very helpful to gain this knowledge through these dynamic presentations that encouraged asking questions and suggesting ideas.


We also participated in 2 competitions: Poster Competition and Pharmacy Debate. We prepared our poster prior to the trip and chose as a topic “Pharmaceutical Bio-products and Their Impact to the Society”. Since it was our very first time, it took us a lot of work to first choose a topic we were interested in, gather and reformulate information and design the poster. We were really anxious about having to present our work in front of foreign judges, but we ended up doing a great job. And although we did not win the first place, it was a pleasure participating in such a different kind of activity. The second competition consisted of a debate that had as a subject “Pharmacy student numbers should be controlled”. We were up against a 3-member team and were asked to present arguments and defend our position regarding the subject. This time, the anxiety kicked in much more since everything was improvised and although we spent the whole night preparing for the debate, we had to come up with new stuff to say on the spot in order to refute what the opposing team presented. Luckily, we won first place and got rewarded with money and a certificate that we will cherish forever as a sign of achievement. Even though it was a small competition, it meant the world to us, travelling abroad and winning at something that different from what we’re used to. But not only did IPW add to our knowledge in our pharmaceutical field, it also had an amazing impact on the personal level. First, the competitions helped us challenge ourselves and be confident about what we work for. Plus, nothing says adventure like travelling to such a different country with your friend and getting to know such a unique culture with all that it has to offer. The people there were amazingly welcoming and friendly and the cities were vividly dynamic. And as if we weren’t fascinated enough by the amazing journey, IPW also held together a Post-Tour trip to one of Indonesia’s best islands: Belitung, or as we like to call it “the little piece of paradise”. We had never heard about this island but we were so grateful to have went to such an incredible place where the people did not know what materialism was, where they helped you with no return, where they lived for their homes and families and not more. And as cliché as it may


seem, they really helped us appreciate what we had back home and thank god everyday for it. We were lucky enough to meet wonderful people who made the trip a million times better with their sense of humor and their kind hearts. Besides the activities organized by IPW, we all made some plans of our own. It was as if we knew them for decades.

We finally understood how hard goodbyes were. In less than a week, we built friendships that will last forever. We never lost contact with them and we never will. They will forever be the special part of an unforgettable journey that we will always cherish. Finally, our last words can’t be anything but this: we definitely encourage everyone to embark on such an exceptional experience that will allow you to make new friends, see new places, and most importantly get a chance to know yourself outside the comfort zone of the life you’ve built for yourself throughout your years at home.


Lpsa newsletter #1  

A closer eye on pharmacy students' lives, perspective, plans, challenges, and much more.

Lpsa newsletter #1  

A closer eye on pharmacy students' lives, perspective, plans, challenges, and much more.