ENTEBBE – Over 150 health professionals from 19 African countries are in Uganda for the annual African Pharmaceutical Symposium.
The symposium, which is taking place at Imperial Botanical Beach in Entebbe, will last five days under the theme ‘A new health era: pharmacy practice and the evolving epidemiologic landscape’.
The symposium will discuss key issues affecting the pharmacy sector, including curriculum/training in universities, the roles of pharmacists in managing communicable and non-communicable diseases and emerging technologies in the pharmaceutical sector.
“In addition, as pharmacy practice expands with the increase in complexity of health needs, it should also be integrated with the current trends of technology and innovation. Because health technologies such as vaccines, diagnostics, medicines, medical devices and Information and Communication Technologies are important in facilitating access to affordable health care services,” the symposium concept note reads in part.
The concept note on the symposium says specialization is key in building the professional capital to encounter advancement and also in encountering the double burden of disease that Africa is facing now, with the partial transition from communicable to non-communicable diseases.
“This means there is a high prevalence of both NCDs such as diabetes, cardiovascular and lung diseases, cancer and psychiatric disorders together with communicable diseases such as malaria, tuberculosis and HIV/AIDs among others. Therefore to prepare the pharmaceutical workforce for the current and future health challenges of health systems, a needs-based and an evidence-based approach to education and training of pharmacists should be adopted basing on the FIPs global vision of pharmacy education and workforce development,” the note says.
Key speakers at the symposium include; Dr. Amaza Ronald, the Former President, Uganda Pharmacy Students’ Association; Dr. Opio Samuel, Secretary, Pharmaceutical Society of Uganda; Dr. Fadhiru P Kamba Chair, Pharmacy Department Makerere and Dr. Joseph N Mwoga, Adviser, WHO Medicines Uganda. Others are Dr. Morris Seru, the Commissioner Pharmaceutical Services, Ministry of Health, Dr. Hellen Ndagije, Director Product Safety, National Drug Authority and Dr. Arinze Awiligwe, Founder, Global Health Young Professionals Initiative- Geneva