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Sanofi-Aventis, KAU train pharmacists.

Byline: Jeddah

Sanofi-Aventis and King Abdulaziz University have joined hands to launch a 'Health Ambassador' program recently, to upgrade the skills and knowledge of pharmacists.

'A community pharmacist is the professional who would be in direct access to the public and whose duties are widely sought after by the public and patients,' said Dr Rashid Khan, marketing manager at Sanofi-Aventis.

'Pharmacist dispenses medicines with a prescription and in certain cases without a prescription where applicable (over the counter medicines). As such, he has to play an important role in health care system.'

In this regard, professor Ahmed El-Berry, head of clinical pharmacy department of College of Pharmacy, King Abdulaziz University Hospital explained that reliance on pharmacists in our society is increasing considerably, such that consulting a pharmacist has become preferred over visiting the doctor, pointing out that this phenomenon is incorrect and not favourable for the patient.

'If the patient's case is simple, then the pharmacist can deal with it quickly and easily as some cases, such as minor cold or light cough, do not necessarily require a doctor's expertise; but some cases require the expertise of seasoned and trained doctors who can effectively diagnose the disease and provide the right medications and treatment,' he added.

Professor El-Berry stressed that medications can not be taken without consulting a doctor, because medications can have different effects on different people. "We can not find a single drug that is suitable for all people; a medicine may help some patients and yet be harmful to others," he said.

Sanofi-Aventis Health Ambassador program will be continuous education for pharmacists comprising medical and pharmacy management related topics through a series of lectures all over Saudi Arabia.- TradeArabia News Service

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Publication:TradeArabia (Manama, Bahrain)
Date:Dec 31, 2008
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