The Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN) in Ogun State has promised to collaborate with the state government on management of long-term and chronic diseases.
This, according to the body, includes communicable diseases, such as HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis as well as non-communicable diseases, such as hypertension, diabetes, cancer and cardiovascular diseases.
The state Chairman of the PSN, Otunba Adewale Adenugba, who stated this in his address at the Pharmacy House, Abeokuta, on the occasion of this year’s World Pharmacists Day, said the collaboration became necessary, as pharmacists are the closest healthcare providers to the community.
Adenugba said: “The Nigeria National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) has already deployed machinery to engage the over 6,000 community pharmacies in Nigeria in the national vaccination programme.
“Pharmacists, as the closest healthcare providers to the community and also as the last port of call in hospital, have proven to be key in the management of long-term and chronic diseases.
“The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals Number 3 sets a number of targets for these disease conditions and pharmacists in Ogun State are willing and empowered to collaborate with the government and all other stakeholders in healthcare to bring succour and relief to the good people of the state via a united front.
“Pharmacists in Ogun State in different areas of practice, Industrial/Production, Community/Retail, Academic/Research, Public Health and Hospital Practice are trained and continuously being trained to deliver effective pharmaceutical care, following international guidelines and best practices in prevention and management of these disease conditions, thereby improving the overall health status, quality of life and life expectancy of the good people of Ogun State.
“Globally, pharmacists are recognised as drug therapy experts, health educators and improved patient care advocates.
“The trust and confidence of people in pharmacy and pharmacists as providers of care will continue to increase as more and more pharmacists provide a broad spectrum of healthcare services.”
The PSN chairman added: “In our country Nigeria, following trends already obtained in other advanced countries, patients, policymakers and the society at large are beginning to understand the multifunctional role of the pharmacists. This was revealed in a great measure during the recent COVID-19 pandemic where pharmacists across Nigeria being the closest healthcare providers to citizens played a crucial role in stemming the spread of the disease while also catering for the healthcare needs of the majority of citizens who could not access hospital services due to different levels and stages of COVID-19 lockdown.
“Pharmacists were at the forefront in the production, procurement and distribution of Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) through various non-governmental organisations (NGOs), government central pharmaceutical stores and thousands of retail community pharmacy outlets around the country throughout the pandemic.”
He, however, appreciated the efforts of Dapo Abiodun on his giant strides in healthcare in the state through different measures, such as renovation and equipping of primary health centres, the recently-launched Ogun State Health Insurance Agency and the Drug Management Agency in the pipeline asking that more and more pharmacists be engaged into government agencies for better performance.