Mauritius hosted the 28th Congrès de la Fédération Pharmaceutique de l'Océan Indien (FPOI) on 2 and 3 November 2018 at the Intercontinental Mauritius Resort in Balaclava. The Minister of Housing and Lands, Mr Mahen Jhugroo, was present at the opening ceremony held on 2 November.
In his address, Minister Jhugroo pointed out that the role of pharmacists is numerous as they are called upon to attend to the needs of the community by providing adequate information about prescriptions and to manage medications. They are also called upon to supervise the pharmacy's technicians in preparing medications according to established standards and procedures, dispose of unused or expired medication by adopting eco-friendly measures and following up of patient's treatment, he added.
He highlighted that pharmacists are frontline health care professionals who constitute a 'maillon fort' to the roles of others such as doctors, nurses, and pharmacy technicians. He however cautioned that the noble profession may lose its identity if colleagues in the profession get involved in questionable practice. Hence the need, he emphasised, to keep up to the standards so that the trust and faith placed in pharmacists is honoured.
Minister Jhugroo also recalled that in a bid to revamp the profession, the Pharmacy Council of Mauritius was enacted in October 2015 and became fully operational in November 2017. Its objectives, he underlined, are to regulate and control the profession of pharmacists, and promote advancement in the field of pharmacy.
Other measures include: enactment of the Pharmacy Council Act since 1st November 2017, as well as the new regulations for the opening up of new pharmacies in order to ensure a better control and efficiency.
The congress gathered pharmaceutical professionals from Mauritius, Reunion Island, Madagascar and France who discussed on areas of expertise and practice in the Indian Ocean. Several themes were on the agenda namely: Clinical trials: challenges and opportunities; A Drug Formulary Application Prototype in Mauritius; Resistance to antibiotics in Mauritius; Pharmacovigilance in Mauritius; General notions on vaccination; and Treatment of high blood pressure.
On that occasion, the Pharmaceutical Association of Mauritius Magazine 2018 was launched.