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12/15/2011

Pharmacy Students on a quest to change the world

Changing the world is an ambitious objective, but a reachable one, and P2 students, Yuqian Liu and Jin Hyung Park, are on their way.  This past summer, future Doctors Liu and Park visited Thailand and Korea respectively as part of International Pharmaceutical Students’ Federation (IPSF) delegations.  The IPSF is a global organization where pharmacy students of multi-national representation gather to share their practices and their experiences from their homelands.  This year Yuqian and Jin shared USciences with the world.

That pharmacy practice, by necessity, varies across the word is perhaps obvious. But Yuqian and Jin experienced this variety of practices first hand by meeting and exchanging stories of the urgent need for pharmacists’ participation in health care provision across the world.  Even more obvious is the passion and urgency that both Yuqian and Jin feel for providing health care to the underserved.

Speaking with both, one is left with a sense of awe that these students are engaging on a courageous path of service and desire to look at a larger picture of the world’s health issues and the role that pharmacists can play in enhancing global health care. Recognizing that the U.S. comprises less than 5 percent of the world’s population, these students are seeking broader representation from U.S. pharmacy students, and pharmacists in general. They have a profound understanding that by collaborating with pharmacists from other nations and exchanging intellectual capital, changing the world’s health picture, while ambitious, isn’t impossible.

Both Yuqian and Jin harbor ambitions to understand pharmacy practice on a global level and to be useful in their careers to alter the course of health disparities worldwide.  Their association with IPSF has fostered these ambitions and will continue to do so as they look forward to traveling to Egypt for this year’s IPSF congress (and they’re on the lookout for others to join this exciting venture). So congratulations to Yuqian and Jin for their vision and courage in knowing that the health care world can be changed, and that pharmacists will be among the team leaders.

--Cornelius D. Pitts, PharmD

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Latest industry findings suggest that this is all having a knock-on effect on performance levels, job satisfaction and a lack of motivation. In extreme cases, four per cent of UK pharmacists are experiencing such high stress levels that they have even admitted to having suicidal thoughts.

I've always felt that pharmacists should have a more "hands-on" approach to patient care and prescription of medicine. They should be stationed in hospitals to, at the very least, verify a doctor's prescription choice. I had a roommate in med school, and one in a pharmacy program and they both seemed equally qualified to diagnose. I'm glad to see that these two gifted students are setting out to make the world a better place.

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