Sun | Sep 24, 2017

UTech pharmacy programme needs leadership

Published:Tuesday | January 26, 2016 | 1:00 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

The poor leadership and management skills of the current registrar continue from as far back as 2013. Pharmacy interns have been experiencing challenges of placement for internship and the format of the council's registration exam from 2013.

Despite communication between interns and the Pharmacy Council of Jamaica, and the Pharmacy Council and Pharmaceutical Society of Jamaica, the council has made no serious attempt to fix any of the issues raised. Instead, the registrar has adopted a bully persona and continues to neglect reasonable requests by his primary stakeholders.

The former minister of health was made aware of these challenges to no avail, likewise the media, which seem to thrive on sensationalism.

The substandard operations of the PCJ doesn't just affect pharmacists or those needing registration; they also affect the wider public (ref: Editorial: 'Cause to worry about pharmacists', Friday, January 22, 2016, The Gleaner).

One would think that the council's registrar is knowledgeable of the make-up and functioning of the council. However, his uninformed and premature comments in the media about the last batch of students not thinking 'critically', and an apparent attack on UTech's more than 50-year-old pharmacy programme further highlight his incompetence.

Furthermore, one of the council's duties, as mandated by law, is to monitor the pharmacy teaching programme at UTech. This has not been observed.

Clearly, the registrar and the PCJ need introspection and leadership. Around the world, European and Canadian pharmacists are being registered online, and exam blueprints are available to students. Fact is, we live in an information technology era. Why not use it to our advantage and the betterment of our nation?

MARIO BROWN

Registered Pharmacist since December 2014

marr1989@yahoo.com