New pharmacists charged to raise quality of profession at graduation ceremony

Twenty-nine new pharmacists have been charged with helping to raise the standard of their profession and to execute their duties with the highest standards.

The six interns from 2020 and another 23 from 2021, donned their white coats and proudly recited the pharmacist pledge at the graduation ceremony, Thursday.

Minister of Health, Dr. Frank Anthony, MP.

Minister of Health, Dr. Frank Anthony gave the charge at the event held at the Bookland Garden, Georgetown.

“This is a very important part of your training, and where you get to apply the theory that you would have learnt in classroom, and do the practical aspect of things. The Pharmacist, as you know is a very important component of healthcare delivery,”

The health minister reminded the young professionals that they now bear a serious responsibility to understand their patients and to look after their interests.  

New Pharmacists reciting their pharmacist pledge with the traditional lit candle in hand, during their White Coat ceremony on Thursday

“It is a very important area you are in, and you have to make sure sometimes that you look at the medicines that are being dispensed to see whether or not there’s going to be interactions between those medicines; a lot of time because of varying conditions that the patients might have people prescribe, but then, when these medicines, direct together, you can have all kinds of other problems happening with that patient.

“It’s the pharmacists who would have to pick up those interactions and maybe let those persons who are prescribing know that this might not be the best combination. And so, you have, you have varying responsibilities. You have a responsibility as part of the team to be able to interact and to play that useful role in the team, you must not be afraid of speaking up, because ultimately, you are there to look after the interests of the patient.”

New Pharmacists reciting their pharmacist pledge with the traditional lit candle in hand, during their White Coat ceremony on Thursday

Minister Anthony also warned the new pharmacists against indiscriminately prescribing things that could lead to problems. He highlighted “antibiotic resistance” which persons may be unaware of. He said this is currently a major issue in the country.

“But again, you would have been taught by your teachers that we have something called antibiotic resistance, and when we indiscriminately prescribe these things that it can lead to a lot of problems in the society.

“And if we are going to help to reduce that in Guyana, then you would have to be the gatekeepers in the places where you’re working. Because it starts there, if we prevent the misuse of it, then we can reduce antibiotic resistance.”

New Pharmacists reciting their pharmacist pledge with the traditional lit candle in hand, during their White Coat ceremony on Thursday

Minister Anthony said as government develops Guyana’s healthcare sector, many more avenues will be opened for health professionals.

He also urged the graduates to be ambassadors of COVID-19, to talk about vaccination, encourage persons to get vaccinated and help save lives.

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