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UPPhA flaunts unique pharmacy fields at PPS6

By Sheena Jasley Samonte, The Pharmakon

The University of the Philippines Pharmaceutical Association (UPPhA) Student Council, in partnership with Young Pharmacists Group (YPG) Philippines, congregated 341 pharmacy students, and 113 pharmacy professionals at the 6th Philippine Pharmacy Summit (PPS6) last February 11 at the SMX Convention Center Aura with the theme: “Revealing the Multidisciplinary Background of Pharmacy.”

PPS is a pioneer project of the UPPhA Student Council in 2013. On its 6th year, it has significantly broadened audiences under UPCP as an accredited Continuing Professional Development (CPD) provider. The theme aims to widen the perspective of the participants, to define the different roles and specializations that can be taken by future pharmacists, and to break the stigma that pharmacists are only meant inside the four walls of drugstores or hospitals. UPPhA Student Council Adviser Ms. Joanna Toralba, RPh, MSc welcomed the delegates, and the keynote speech, “No healthcare is without medicine and no medicine is without a pharmacist” was delivered by former Philippine Pharmacists Association (PPhA) President Ms. Leonila Ocampo, RPh, MS.

PPS speaker, Irene Florentino-Farinas, discusses Philippine Medicines Policy (Photo and caption by Felicse L. Gotia)

Mr. Mark Ryan Langit, RPh, MS served as Guest Speaker with his topic “Pharmacists: reveal yourselves. Collaborate more, communicate effectively and strengthen your commitment.” Furthermore, plenary sessions were clustered according to different fields of pharmacy practice — Doctor of Pharmacy Program, Radiopharmacy, Pharmacogenomics, Philippine Medicine Policy, and Psychopharmacology.

The series of topics for the first part included “Doctor of Pharmacy Program: Transitioning to Clinical Pharmacy Education: The UP College of Pharmacy Experience” by PPhA President Ms. Yolanda Robles, RPh, MPHARM, PhD, and “Radiopharmacy: An Avenue for Professional Specialty” by Ms. Marie Grace Guieb, RPh. During the second part, “Pharmacogenomics: Emerging Roles for Pharmacists in Precision Medicine” by Mr. Francis Capule, RPh, MS, and “The Philippine Medicines Policy – Addressing the Evolving Pharmaceutical Needs of the Filipinos” by Ms. Irene Florentino-Fariñas, RPh, MD, MNSA were tackled. To further address prevalent social issues on the healthcare system, psychopharmacology was introduced by Ms. Dinah Palmera Nadera, MD through her talk, “The Role of the Pharmacist in Public Mental Health.

PPS6 continues to partake in the promotion of research in pharmacy through the acknowledgment of papers succeeding the pre-event submission of abstracts. This year’s winning research is titled: “Lived Experiences of Retakers in the Pharmacists Licensure Examination: A Bitter Pill to Swallow” by K.M.S. Batu. The study sought to describe the experiences and feelings of the retakers in the Pharmacists Licensure Examination from Manila Central University – College of Pharmacy from 2012-2016.

The event was concluded by the officer-in-charge, UPPhA Vice President Gene Talavera. Philippine Pharmacy Summit seeks to continue exploring possibilities, and finding opportunities to learn beyond classroom interaction.

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