A new curriculum for the pharmacy profession in the nation’s universities is in the offing, the President of Nigeria Academy of Pharmacy, Julius Adelusi-Adeluyi, has said.

He said the curriculum was being put together by the Academy in partnership with the various teaching institutions and the National Universities Commission (NUC).

“Obviously, the imperative of it is keeping the teachers apace with the rapid evolution of the profession which cannot be overstated.

“The academy has also been in the forefront of mentoring and motivating young pharmacists as ultimately, the future of pharmacy rests in the hands of tomorrow’s pharmacists.

“The academy is exploring ways of converting the massive footprints of visitors to hospital pharmacies into real value of the profession to make healthcare delivery accessible to all,’’ Mr. Adelusi-Adeluyi, a former Health Minister, said at the investiture of new fellows in Lagos on Friday night.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the inductees are Herbert Coker, professor of pharmacy and pharmaceutical chemistry, College of Medicine, University of Lagos; Ogori Taylor, a retired pharmaceutical advisor for the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Other recipients are Karniyus Gamaniel, founding Dean of Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Maiduguri; Mojisola Adeyeye, a professor of Pharmaceutics at the Roosevelt University and the first African Woman Fellow of the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (AAPS).

Theresa Pound, a Pharmocotherapist in U.S. and Calixthus Okuruwa, a consultant on public affairs and marketing management, also made the list.

Mr. Adelusi-Adeluyi also said the paradigm shift from medicine to tele-medicine was a welcome development, pointing out that it would further help to provide better healthcare to the people.

He described pharmacy as the bedrock of effective healthcare delivery in the country and the most trusted healthcare provider and a driving force behind the discovery of new drugs.

“Pharmacy is the key that unlock all you need to know about medicine, Pharmacists are with you in sickness and health counseling the patients and we serve with integrity.

“It is the driving force behind discovery of new drugs in the world and it is not only making it, but also make it work,’’ he told NAN.

Commenting on the paradigm shift from medicine to telemedicine globally, he said it was a welcome development, pointing out that it would further help to provide better healthcare to the people.

“There is an innovation in U.S. in the University of Washington whereby pancreatic cancer can be detected through a `selfie’ (taking a snapshot using a mobile phone).

“This is a wonderful breakthrough in the early detection of cancer and it is happening on the back of technology which has continued to evolve rapidly and today, we are blessed with artificial intelligence.

“We must pay attention to how artificial intelligence will impact in eradicating pain and diseases and how it will impact on the work processes of pharmacists and other health professionals.’’

On the inductees, he said they were carefully selected to represent the integrity of the field of pharmacy, adding that membership is open to those who are practising in the diaspora.

On his part, the president, Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria, (PSN), Ahmed Yakasai, said the body was committed to making Nigeria the hub of pharmaceutical production and research in Africa.

“We want to make Nigeria the hub of pharmaceutical research and production in Africa through a well-tailored plan which has been broken down to short, medium and long-term plan.

“We have carefully selected some professionals that will work in this direction because our nation is blessed with abundant manpower to take the health sector by storm,’’ he said.

In his presentation, the keynote speaker, Prof. Isa Marte Hussaini from University of Maiduguri, called for commitment on the part of the government to the funding of research.

“We need more research grants in our country; it is not about the personnel but the tools to work with. All over the world, there are Nigerians who have distinguished themselves in the field of medicine.

“The bane of the nation’s development in the health sector is inadequate funding and this has put the sector in serious crisis,’’ he said. (NAN)

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