E-drug: Brain drain of pharmacists (cont'd)
Thanks, Eva and Mohga, for interesting suggestions. I've come
across supervisor pharmacists who look after several businesses
managed by experienced (eg, more than five years of 'clean'
practice), where the local laws allow for that. Of course, if the lack of
pharmacist persists, then the law and professional regulations may
have to change to meet the challenge and to redefine roles,
responsibilities, and authority. Mohga mentions excess pharmacists in
some developing countries. Taking that reality, together with Eva's
comment about VSO who may not have the contract time to get to
learn the local situation, is it not time to push for a 'south- south'
solution to this problem? I'm sure, if given the support, VSO and
institutions like it, could recruit pharmacists from those south
countries with excess, for projects in other needy countries in the
south. I've not heard of an equivalent organisation to VSO that is
based in the south, that could do such work, but it would be a
fantastic way to encourage south-south interaction.
I'm young enough to recall that at both primary and secondary school
levels, I was taught by teachers assigned from the south (eg, India,
Sri Lanka, Guyana.. but in all geographical fairness, I should add New
Zealand and Australia, too) who were on fairly short contracts. I
gather these were through bilateral agreements between countries. In
respect to pharmacist, I later worked with colleagues from Japan, UK
(VSO), Denmark, USA. The cost implications to JICA, DANIDA,
USAID, etc, were and remain phenomenal, even for a short contract.
Similar cost implications would have to be considered by any
institutions in the south which would take on such an activity.
Bonface Fundafunda PhD, MBA, B.Pharm(Hon)
21 Beverstone Road,
Surrey CR7 7LL
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