The “Clinical Pharmacist”


Those of us who step in the field of clinical pharmacy, with the vision of saving lives, doing therapeutic drug monitoring, monitoring patients lab report, preventing an adverse drug reaction, working in poison control centers  etc very soon start realizing that not only doing your duty is difficult but is also impossible!! Questions will be raised as to why are you doing this? On whose authority have you been allowed to do this? Where is it written that you are even allowed to do this??

Well I have a GOOD NEWS!! The answer to all these questions are possible now. Punjab Government has recently issued an official notice to all the teaching hospitals of Punjab on the subject of establishing pharmacy services in hospitals, It emphasizes on the importance and role and need of clinical pharmacist and I quote;

“The role of clinical pharmacist is dire need of the day to provide better patient care”

According to this notice the pharmacy services are defined as;

“Pharmacy Services means services rendered by pharmacist in pharmaceutical care, selection, posology, counselling, dispensing, use, administration, prescription monitoring, pharmacoepidemiology, therapeutic goods information and poison control, pharmacovigillance, pharmacoeconomics, storage, sales, procurement, forecasting, supply chain management drug utilization evaluation,drug utilization review, formulary based drug utilization and managing therapeutic goods at all levels including pharmacy, clinic, medical store, hospital or medical institution.”

The pharmacy services on urgent basis are to be implemented in all the hospitals and the treat isn’t over yet. According to this official order Pharmacy department shall be established in each health institution wherein pharmacy services will be provided to the patients.

Six months paid clinical pharmacy training programs  in the hospitals will be arranged for graduate pharmacist.The number of pharmacists has been increased  in hospital as minimum of one pharmacist for fifty bed for each shift.  

Pharmacy and therapeutic committee shall be established in each hospital and will be made functional. Each and every hospital will have to make a formulary. A separate column on the patients chart will be printed for ward notes by the clinical pharmacist. The clinical pharmacist will be deputed in the wards ,where during the ward round with the professors/ physicians and hospital administration shall be mandatory.

Digital pharmacy services such as computerization of inventory, introducing IT facilities such as drug information system like Micromedex and poison control software and a uniform inventory software will be introduced.

The pharmacy department will act as an independent department of the hospital, Adverse drug reaction  reporting system will be establish and in case of an adverse drug reaction the hospital administration will have to be notified immediately. WHO guidelines of storage and distribution of drugs will have to be strictly followed. A proper storage area will be established with temperature and humidity control facilities.

This my dear friends is a golden opportunity for Us to prove that we are in fact the back bone of patient care and an important pillar of health care system. Our goal should be “FASTER,HIGHER,STRONGER” i.e providing fast, efficient and timely pharmacy services to all the patients, with our involvement the standard of patient care should be higher than before and overall the healthcare system should get stronger and better. One of the most important thing is to bear in mind that we have to work in collaboration with physicians and nurses, by following and adopting the multidisciplinary approach, we are all equal, neither we are superior nor inferior. For ultimate patient benefit we will have to work as a team because after all ;




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