A national programme in Australia that aims to increase the profile of community pharmacists and a health promotion campaign run by pharmacists in Portugal have won international recognition.
The Health Destination Programme — developed and delivered by the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) — was named the winner of the 2016 Pharmacy Practice Improvement Programme Award at the 76th World Congress of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Science meeting in Buenos Aires on 28 August 2016.
The award is the first of its kind given by the International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) – the membership organisation of national associations of pharmacists and pharmaceutical scientists from around the world.
So far, 25 Australian pharmacies have signed up to the scheme, which is designed to help them develop their services to meet the needs of their local community.
The PSA programme has laid the foundations for a national pharmacy-led minor ailments service and, so far, pharmacies that have signed up to the initiative have seen their yearly profits boosted by an average A$79,000 (€52,000).
Joe Demarte, PSA president, says the organisation is proud to receive the award. “[The programme] shows that, as in many countries around the world, there are many opportunities for community pharmacies to play an enhanced role in patient care despite an increasingly uncertain financial future,” he says.
Portugal’s pharmaceutical society — the Ordem dos FarmacÃªuticos de Portugal — won the first FIP 2016 Health Promotion Campaign Award for its successful public awareness campaign ‘Medicines use — we are all responsible’.
The campaign’s dedicated website has received more than 884,000 hits and an associated TV campaign had 28 million viewers.
The society also teamed up with Portugal’s Healthy Generation Project, which educates around 13,000 primary school students annually about healthy lifestyles and preventable diseases.
Ana Paula Martins, the society’s president, says: “The campaign sets a first step in promoting best practices and habits in the responsible use of medicines among the population. Recognition of this work by FIP among so many campaigns around the world is an honour.”