LAHORE - Like other parts of the globe, World Pharmacists Day was observed across the country including Lahore yesterday with the slogan 'Pharmacists: Caring for you'.

The Day is observed on September 25 annually to encourage pharmacists to organise activities that promote and advocate for the role of the pharmacist in improving health.

Seminars, walks and demonstrations were arranged by pharmacist bodies to highlight the role of pharmacists in healthcare service delivery.

In Lahore, College of Pharmacy, University of the Punjab arranged a ceremony to mark the day. Dr Khalid Hussain, Dean College of Pharmacy Punjab University and Dr Nadeem Irfan Bokhari, Principal College of Pharmacy cut the cake. Later they led a walk for raising awareness about disease, cure, better living, prevention and treatment. Young Pharmacists Association Pakistan, Drug Lawyers Forum and pharmacists bodies arranged a demonstration outside Lahore Press Club.

Noor Mehar, Muhammad Usman and Hina Shaukat addressed the participants of the ceremony, walk and demonstration. They urged patients to consult a pharmacist for minimising the chances of medical errors. Pharmacists have an important role in giving advice to patients for appropriate use of medicines, they added.

They said pharmacists also help the patients choose the best medicines keeping in mind their side effects. The pharmacists had a supportive role and they helped the doctors determine the best drug or non-drug therapy for a patient's specific disorder keeping in view their past and present illness, age, gender or family history, they added.

“Pharmacists also play a key role in advising the patients with regard to drug allergies and possible adverse reactions.

“Their responsibilities include a range of care for patients, from dispensing medications to monitoring patient health and progress to maximise their response to the medication,” the speakers added.

They urged the pharmacists to become entrepreneurs and do not wait for government jobs, as the government always have limited resources and cannot provide jobs to everyone.

The pharmacists should take advantage of the prime minister’s scheme of giving Rs2 million loans to the skilled professionals to help establish their own units, they suggested. “The government should also give preference to the pharmacists to run these units in order to make local pharmaceutical industry best in the world.”