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E-DRUG: FIP's plea for 'activist' pharmacists

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FIP's plea for 'activist' pharmacists

        El Salvador. The main threat for the pharmaceutical 
profession is a financial one. Prices of medicines are getting 
higher and higher, all over the world, and because the pharmacy is 
the last part of the distribution chain, it is there that the 
authorities seek to economise.
        Mr. Alan Davidson, Secretary General of the International 
Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP), who was invited to Latin America 
last November, presented in El Salvador some ambitious plans for 
tomorrow's pharmacy. Ambitious, but realistic, and 
therefore it seemed useful to us to give you the highlights of 
his speech, it was reported in the French Newsletter 'Les 
Nouvelles Pharmaceutiques'.
        However, real savings cannot be made by selling cheaper 
medicines, but by preventing patients from entering into the 
hospital circuit. This know-how of pharmacists is also a strong 
argument against the second threat: distribution of medicines by 
non-pharmacists. Therefore, we have to show people 
that a pharmacist is the most effective and, in the end, the 
cheapest distributor of medicines.
        One of our main challenges is education. Pharmacists have 
to learn how to interact with patients, because their knowledge 
and experience are of enormous importance to them. When educated 
properly, pharmacists can prevent almost 10% of all hospitalisations.
        But pharmacists have to take the future in their own hands.
We have to make sure that there is always a pharmacist present in 
every pharmacy, who is constantly available and capable of giving 
advice to patients.
        We also have to become more involved with health policy, 
on all levels and therefore we have to organise ourselves, to be 
able to discuss problems and to resolve them together.

Alan W Davidson
General Secretary, International Pharmaceutical Federation

----------End of Original Message----------

Carolyn Green, Sen.Pharm.Adviser
ECHO International Health Services, 
Ullswater Crescent, Coulsdon, Surrey CR5 2HR UK
Phone: 44(0)181 660 2220   Fax: 44(0)181 668 0751
E-mail: advisers@echointl.demon.co.uk  
Date: 12/03/96
Time: 11:54:06

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