MEMBERS of the Pharmaceutical Society of South Africa (PSSA) gathered at the Madison Hotel in Stutterheim last Saturday to come up with innovative ways of igniting passion among current and aspiring pharmacists.
PSSA Border and Eastern District branch chairman Simbongile Pambuka said they had discussed with concern ways to spark new passion for the profession among pharmacists.
“Usually we have Pharmacy Week annually and promote health care around the country. This year we brought the conference for the first time to the Eastern Cape because conferences usually happen in Johannesburg and the Eastern Cape has been neglected. We chose Stutterheim and many pharmacists from the country and heads of pharmacy schools from some universities were there.
“This year’s theme was ‘Recreating Passion for Our Profession’ as we found health care is now more of a career than a calling. We had really good speakers who want to give back to the communities.”
Pambuka said critical health issues were discussed.
“We spoke about the national health insurance. We have two parallel health sectors in our country – the private health sector and the public sector serving 84% which is why it is always congested.
“Pharmacies are always packed and the people who buy there do not have medical aid, but because they cannot wait in the long queues at the clinics, they take money from their grants and go to pharmacies.”
He said it was of great importance to have a spirit of serving in the profession.
“We have communities with clinics that are not functional. It is sad to see that after 1994 we still have people who do not have access to health care, so we want to create that passion in pharmacists to go the extra mile. We want to see how the private sector can assist people.”