Investment in midwifery can save millions of lives of women and newborns

3 Jun, 2014


 A report released today by UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund together with the International Confederation of Midwives (ICM), WHO and partners reveals that major deficits in the midwifery workforce occur in 73 countries where these services are most desperately needed. The report recommends new strategies to address these deficits and save millions of lives of women and newborns.; background-position: 0% 0%; background-repeat: repeat-x;”>; background-position: 0% 100%; background-repeat: repeat-x;”>

“This report, like the Every Newborn Action Plan recently adopted by the World Health Assembly, sets a clear way forward. Both aim to encourage governments to allocate adequate resources for maternal and newborn health services within national health sector plans.”

Dr. Flavia Bustreo, WHO Assistant Director-General for Family, Women’s and Children’s Health

The 73 African, Asian and Latin American countries represented in the “State of the World’s Midwifery 2014: A Universal Pathway – A Woman’s Right to Health” suffer 96% of the global burden of maternal deaths, 91% of stillbirths and 93% of newborn deaths, but have only 42% of the world’s midwives, nurses and doctors. The report urges countries to invest in midwifery education and training to contribute to closing the glaring gaps that exist. Investments in midwifery education and training at agreed international standards can yield – as a study from Bangladesh shows – a 1600% return on investment.

“Midwives make enormous contributions to the health of mothers and newborns and the well-being of entire communities. Access to quality health care is a basic human right. Greater investment in midwifery is key to making this right a reality for women everywhere,” said Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin, UNFPA Executive Director.

Midwives have a crucial role to play in the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) 4 (decrease child death) and 5 (increase maternal health). When educated to international standards and within a fully functional health system, they can provide about 90% of the essential care to women and newborns and can potentially reduce maternal and newborn deaths by two thirds.

Despite a steady decline in maternal deaths in the 73 countries that are covered in the report – dropping yearly by 3% since 1990 – and newborn deaths – decreasing by 1.9% per year since 1990 – there is more these countries need to do to address the severe shortage of midwifery care.

“Midwives are central to midwifery care and the lives of women and newborn babies. The report precedes the Lancet Special Series on Midwifery, which together with the report will provide the evidence to guide all policy-makers in their quest to end preventable maternal and newborn deaths,” said ICM President Frances Day-Stirk.

The report, launched at the 30th ICM Triennial Congress in Prague, Czech Republic highlights the progress made since the inaugural 2011 report and solutions to the barriers outlined in four key areas: availability, accessibility, acceptability and quality of midwifery services: A number of countries have effectively strengthened midwifery and improved access: Nearly half (45%) of the 73 countries have implemented measures to retain midwives in remote areas and 28% are increasing the recruitment and deployment of midwives, while 20% have implemented new codes of practice and 71% have improved information collection enabling countries to address shortages and education standards.

Despite progress, inequities such as lack of access to services and poverty have increased within and among countries. There are still not enough adequately educated midwives to support the health of women and newborns, and this contributes to hundreds of thousands of preventable deaths annually. Today, only 22% of countries have potentially enough midwives to provide life-saving interventions to meet the needs of women and newborns, which leaves over three-fourths (78%) of the countries with severe shortages in proper care. As the population grows, so does the gap in critical resources and infrastructure, unless urgent action is taken.

The 2014 report includes recommendations to close these gaps and to ensure all women have access to sexual, reproductive, maternal and newborn services. These include issues such as preventive and supportive care from a collaborative midwifery team, immediate access to emergency services when needed, and completing post-secondary education. From a broader perspective, women should delay marriage, have access to healthy nutrition and receive four pre-birth care visits.

“This report, like the Every Newborn Action Plan recently adopted by the World Health Assembly, sets a clear way forward. Both aim to encourage governments to allocate adequate resources for maternal and newborn health services within national health sector plans. This should include funds for the education and retention of midwives. We will continue to support countries to develop and strengthen their midwifery services as a critical intervention to save the lives of women and newborns,” said Dr. Flavia Bustreo, WHO Assistant Director-General for Family, Women’s and Children’s Health.


Full moon lures thousands of blood donors in Sri Lanka

13 Jun, 2014


To mark World Blood Donor Day 2014, thousands of volunteers have turned up at a centre in Colombo, Sri Lanka to donate blood in what is being claimed as South Asia’s largest blood drive.

Sri Lankans attach special importance to the act of blood donation. “Because most Sri Lankans follow Buddhism, blood donation is religiously and culturally accepted and very much a valued concept,” says Dr Namal Bandara, Senior Registrar of the National Blood Transfusion Service (NBTS).

Blood donation during the Full Moon Day blood drive at Bandaranayaka Memorial International Conference Hall in Colombo, Sri Lanka

Savan de Silva

This year, Sri Lanka is the host country for the global event of World Blood Donor Day. The day also coincides with Poson Poya (Full Moon Day), an annual religious holiday that marks the arrival of Buddhism in Sri Lanka and is a time for generosity and celebration.

Sri Lanka has already established a tradition of encouraging people to give blood every month when the moon is full. Social groups organize blood donation sessions on this day on their own premises – often temples, schools or universities. Some 85% of all donations in Sri Lanka are collected at these mobile sessions.

This year, the Poson Poya blood drive is generating even greater enthusiasm than usual, with around 3000 units of blood (approx. 450ml per unit) collected in one single day at the Bandaranayaka Memorial International Conference Hall in Colombo alone.

Unpaid, volunteer donors are safest

In just 10 years, Sri Lanka has achieved remarkable success in reaching a self-sufficient blood supply. In 2013, the National Blood Transfusion Service (NBTS) collected more than 380 000 units of blood, up from just over 150 000 units ten years ago. This year, NBTS has announced that 100% of all donated blood comes from voluntary, unpaid donors – up from 39% in 2003.

The safest source of blood is from regular, voluntary unpaid donors whose blood is screened for infections. WHO calls for all countries to obtain 100% of their supplies of blood and blood products from voluntary unpaid blood donors by 2020.

In Sri Lanka, every blood donor is personally interviewed and examined by a doctor before they donate blood. All donated blood is screened for HIV, hepatitis B and C, syphilis and malaria. The NBTS has a strict quality control system that works in collaboration with international laboratories to ensure high standards. Transfusion transmissible infection rates are significantly lower among Sri Lankan blood donors than in other countries in the region.

Central system coordinates blood supply

Blood donation during the Full Moon Day blood drive at Bandaranayaka Memorial International Conference Hall in Colombo, Sri Lanka

WHO/T. Suveendran

A key success factor in the country’s rapid rise to self-sufficiency has been the establishment of a centrally-coordinated national transfusion service and increased public awareness of the need for blood donation.

“Sri Lanka has demonstrated strong political will and effective community mobilization, which has resulted in comprehensive nationally coordinated blood transfusion services,” says Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh, WHO Regional Director for South-East Asia.

The Sri Lankan Government has plans to further modernize its system with the introduction of state-of-the-art technology such as cord blood banking, stem cell collection and a computerized network to link all the blood banks.

Sri Lanka’s other innovations in recruiting blood donors include a card system (silver/gold/platinum) for milestone achievers in blood donation, a Facebook fan page, free cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) training to target potential donors and annual health check-ups for selected donors.

Blood saves mothers’ lives

The theme for World Blood Donor Day 2014 is “Safe blood for saving mothers”.

Every day worldwide, almost 800 women die from causes related to complications of pregnancy and childbirth. Severe bleeding during delivery or after childbirth is the single biggest cause of maternal death and can kill a healthy woman within 2 hours if she is unattended. Urgent access to safe supplies of blood for transfusion is critical to saving these women’s lives.

“Since 2005, Sri Lanka has almost halved its maternal mortality rate to approximately 29 deaths per 100 000 live births,” says Dr Firdosi Mehta, WHO’s Representative in Sri Lanka. “This rate, one of the lowest in WHO’s South-East Asia Region, reflects the country’s quality maternal health services, including improved access to safe blood supplies for women giving birth.”

WHO responds to deteriorating humanitarian situation in Iraq

16 Jun, 2014


Erbil, 16 June, 2014 – WHO is working with local and international partners in Iraq to meet the urgent health needs of populations affected by the ongoing crisis.

The humanitarian situation in Iraq has deteriorated dramatically in the last few days, especially in the regions of Ninewa, Salaheddin and Diyala provinces. More than 500 000 people are estimated to have fled their homes in Mosul and surrounding areas. An estimated 100 000 have entered Erbil and 200 000 have fled to Dohuk. Almost 25 000 are seeking shelter in schools and mosques in Mosul City, many with no access to drinking- water, as the main water station for the area was destroyed by bombing, and food shortages are being reported. As the fighting continues, hundreds of thousands more are stranded at checkpoints with no belongings or money for housing, food, water or medical care. Accurate figures of casualties are unavailable but stand in the hundreds.

WHO is concerned about the health situation, which is expected to deteriorate given increasing numbers of people requiring humanitarian assistance and the difficulties faced in channelling human resources and logistics from Baghdad to affected areas.

Immediate and critical health risks of concern to WHO include the spread of measles, which is endemic in Mosul and could potentially lead to outbreaks, especially in overcrowded areas where internally-displaced persons are located. The spread of polio is also a high risk as new cases were reported in the country earlier this year as a result of the Syria crisis.

To monitor disease outbreaks, WHO has strengthened its disease early warning alert and response system in Kurdistan and Mosul. WHO is also launching emergency polio and measles vaccination activities for internally-displaced persons with the directorates of health in Dohuk and Erbil.

As water and sanitation services are likely to be interrupted as a result of the crisis, there is an increased risk of waterborne diseases, such as acute watery diarrhoea, especially as temperatures rise during the coming summer months. A team from WHO is currently on the ground assessing the risk of epidemics in affected areas and will ensure that systems are in place to rapidly respond and contain disease outbreaks.

According to an initial rapid assessment of health facilities in Mosul, three of the city’s seven hospitals are partially functional due to lack of human resources and funding, while the remainder, including a pediatric hospital and a surgical hospital, are fully functional. Out of 40 primary health clinics in Mosul City, 37 are fully functional with staff, medicines, and water and electricity supplies. As the crisis continues, however, access to health facilities for populations in Mosul may be a challenge. WHO has deployed a public health expert to Mosul to work with health partners in assessing health gaps and needs for affected populations.

To ensure adequate trauma care for patients, WHO is supporting the directorate of health in Dohuk with provision of medical supplies for mobile clinics and has also provided interagency emergency health kits containing medicines and medical supplies for 20 000 people for three months, as well as trauma kits for the treatment of 200 people and diarrhoeal disease kits for the treatment of 200 people with severe diarrhoeal disease or 400 people with moderate diarrhoeal disease.

“The impact of the unfolding armed conflict in Mosul and neighbouring districts on the health of affected population cannot be underestimated. These developments are expected to result in critical health consequences,” said WHO Representative in Iraq Dr Syed Jaffar Hussain. “The response to the health needs of those affected by the crisis requires concerted actions from all partners.”

WHO’s response to the crisis will focus on: coordination among health actors, including local health authorities, the Iraqi Red Crescent Society and nongovernmental organizations; trauma care (including mental health); outbreak control, protection of hospitals and health personnel; ensuring the continuation of the supply chain for medicines and medical supplies; gap-filling in water, sanitation and hygiene activities, maternal and child health activities and key public health functions.

For more information, contact:

Iliana Mourad, Emergency Health Cluster Coordinator at

Inas Hamam, WHO Communications Officer at

MERS not an emergency, says WHO panel

20 Jun, 2014


Source: Medicalnewstoday

As the recent surge in Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus – or MERS-CoV – begins to wane in Saudi Arabia, a World Health Organization committee announces that the situation remains a serious concern but does not amount to an international public health emergency.

Read more:

Want a Big Pharma job? Apply in an emerging market–or think smaller

20 Jun, 2014


Source: Fiercepharma

By Tracy Staton

Where have all the Big Pharma jobs gone? To emerging markets, for one. For another? The world’s biggest drugmakers have shuffled their decks, with some shedding jobs and others gaining. Any guesses which? We’ll get to that.

Meanwhile, jobs at smaller drugmakers–including the industry’s biggest biotech companies–ballooned. No surprise, given the fast sales growth enjoyed by some, or the expansion via M&A others prefer. Think Regeneron ($REGN) for the first–and Valeant Pharmaceuticals ($VRX) for the second…

Read more: Want a Big Pharma job? Apply in an emerging market–or think smaller – FiercePharma
Subscribe at FiercePharma


MPS Announcements, Articles & News alerts

Title: iBulletin140605
Date: 05-Jun-2014
Category: iBulletin


With effect from 1st June 2014 all registered pharmacists shall renew the 2015 annual certificate by online together with online payment

Other registration and payment that can be performed online include

  1. Provisionally Registered Pharmacist (PRP)
  2. Fully Registered Pharmacist (FRP)
  3. Body Corporate Registration and Renewal
  4. Temporary Registration
  5. Letter of Good Standing

A step-by-step guide will be

  1. Use browser “Mozilla Firefox”
  2. Log in
  3. Click “Apply Bussiness Licence”
  4. Click “To register with BLESS”
  5. Enter “BLESS ID”
  6. Click “Submission”
  7. Select “Myself” from dropdown list
  8. Select “Annual”/”Registration”, “Body Corporate”, “Letter of Good Standing”
  9. Click “State” Select “Selangor” ONLY
  10. Click “Search button”
  11. Tick relevant check box
  12. Click “Add to Tray”
  13. Click “OK”
  14. Click” My Tray”
  15. Click “Fill up form”
  16. Allow “pop-up” if form not appear
  17. Click “Save”
  18. Upload Document if any
  19. Private pharmacist must click “E payment”
  20. Ensure “Form Status” “Complete”
  21. Click “Submit Application”

>>> If you wish to have a more graphical guide


The BPFK had published the January 2014 No. 15 issue of Reaksi Drug Safety News. This News is intended to provide information on reports and safety issues on medicines to the professionals.

This issue provideinformation on ‘Use in renal impairment’ for the article ‘Comparison and Updates on New Oral Anticoagulants (NOACs)’. All 3 NOAC provide recommendations on ‘renal dosing’ that is different according to the indications.

All health professionals are advised to refer to the package insert that is approved by BPFK for the full information regarding the dosing.

>>> The REAKSI Jan 2014 No. 15


The Manipal Alumni Association of Malaysia, is organising a Symposia Series on Primary Care Medicine on 21-22 June in Le Meridien, KL. The topics include usage of aspirin and statins, Management of Type 2 Diabetes, practical urology, Stroke prevention in atrial fibrillation, sore throat treatment, OA pain management and new concepts and practices in advanced wound care management.

The speakers are those specialists and consultants in a particular field, cardiology and endocrinology.

In conjunction to this, Nurses’s symposium will be held on 22 June 2014 from 2pm – 5pm.  The topics include etiquette, advanced wound care management and practical session. 

Through a mutual arrangement MPS members fees shall be RM100/- only. In addition, there will be a 10+ 1 free registration offer but this must be register directly with the organiser, ie you need to get together in groups of 11.

>>> For more information 


  • Part Time / Registered Pharmacist (Locum)/ Kuala Lumpur Sports Medical Centre Sdn Bhd/ Human Resource Department: 03-2096/
  • Full time/Part time Pharmacist/ Penang/ Siang Pharmacy Sdn Bhd/ Ms.Yeoh: 017-4498410/
  • HEAD OF CPD/Puchong / Malaysian Pharmaceutical Society/
  • Pharmacist/ Klang/ Arunamari Specialist Medical Centre/ Human Resource Department: 03-3324 3288/
  • Retail Pharmacist/ Bukit Damansara/ Farmasi (SYABAS SDN BHD)/ Shireen Ng:
  • Production Pharmacist and R&D Pharmacist/ Terengganu/ Xorix Sdn Bhd/
  • Retail Pharmacists/ Bangi, KLIA2, Bandar Baru Salak Tinggi/ Kell: 013-3333673, Firdaus: 013-3333663/
  • Pharmacist/ Penang/ Penang Adventist Hospital/
  • Assistant or Associate Professor/ School of Pharmacy, University of Nottingham/ Pn Salma Abd Kadir: 03-89248201/
  • Retail Pharmacists or Business Partners needed/ Klang Valley/ Axiana Pharmacy/ Mr. Chin: 017-3325855/ 
  • Retail Pharmacist/ Farmasi Goodmedic/ Mr. Siah: 03-91333395, 012-3388152
  • Retail Pharmacist/ Johor Bahru, Johor/ IJ Pharmacy (M) Sdn Bhd/ Ms Chang: 07-3552878
  • Retail Pharmacist/ Klang, Petaling Jaya & Shah Alam/ Mr Vinaybalaji:  014-2273072/
  • Retail Pharmacist/ Ampang/ Farmasi Ampang/ Winston Chiu: 012-2073788/
  • Retail Pharmacist/ Klang Valley/ Constant Pharmacy/ Mr Loh –
  • Retail Pharmacist/ Batu Pahat, Yong Peng, Muar, Parit Raja, & Rengit/ Farmasi Murni Marketing Sdn. Bhd. / Mr. Liew: 012-7777023/
  • Retail Pharmacist/ Melaka/ Home-Care Pharmacy Sdn Bhd/ Mr. Koo: 0126838633 @ 0162368110/
  • Retail Pharmacist/ Klang Valley/ Materia Medica Pharmacy/ Mr Saiful Islam Yusoff : 013 628 0139/ Pn Puteri Nurulain Salleh: 03 6038 1810/
  • Production Pharmacist/ Melaka/ Xepa-Soul Pattinson (M) Sdn Bhd/ Human Resource Department: 06-3351515/
  • Retail Pharmacist/ Ipoh/ Globe Pharmacy/ Mr. Rajiv: 016-2603444, Mr. Sim: 012-5576812/
  • Clinical Informaticist (Pharmacy)/ Kuala Lumpur/ Pantai Holdings BHD/
  • Pharmacist/ Petaling Jaya, Selangor/ Tropicana Medical Centre (M) Sdn Bhd/ Mr Shazli Sallehudin: 603-62871196/
  • Retail Pharmacist/ Watson’s Personal Care Stores Sdn Bhd/ HR Department: 03-21432386/

– See more at:

Pharmacists reminded of need to be vigilant in preparation of dose administration aids

20 Jun, 2014


Pharmacists have been reminded of the need to follow correct standards and procedures in the preparation of dose administration aids (DAAs) following a warning from the Pharmacy Board of Australia over a medication incident involving the drug methotrexate.

The Board said this resulted in a death and while the medication was dispensed correctly, the resultant packaging of the drug into a dose administration aid by a pharmacy technician was incorrect and the packing error was not detected by the pharmacist.

National President of the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA), Grant Kardachi, said DAAs were extremely effective in assisting in compliance and adherence to medication regimens but pharmacists needed to be robust in their procedures.

“PSA has in place guidelines and standards for DAAs and these were developed to help ensure a DAA service meets the safety and quality requirements of professional practice,” Mr Kardachi said.

“These standards and guidelines stipulate that a pharmacist should introduce procedures for quality control, quality assurance and monitoring of DAA provision.

“They also say audits should be carried out before starting a DAA service and at six-monthly intervals. The performance and results of these activities should be recorded together with any action taken, or outcome.”

Mr Kardachi said millions of DAAs were prepared annually in Australia and were proven to be highly effective in improving the nation’s health, with non-compliance of medicines still a major factor in adding significant costs to the health system.

“Pharmacists every year actually prevent thousands of medication mishaps through DAAs and the case highlighted by the Pharmacy Board is a rare, but unacceptable, incident,” Mr Kardachi said.

“I would also remind pharmacists involved in DAAs to have a separate area of the pharmacy dedicated to this work so that all those involved in the preparation and checking of DAAs are able to work in an environment that allows the standards and guidelines to be met.

“As detailed in PSA’s Code of Ethics, patient wellbeing and their health outcomes are paramount for everything that pharmacists do and DAAs are no exception.”

Mr Kardachi said PSA had also developed four checklists in its guidelines to assist pharmacists with:

  •  planning, implementing and maintaining a DAA service
  • formalising a DAA service with the consumer
  • packing the consumer’s DAA
  • confirming and meeting the consumer’s DAA service needs

Media contact:        Peter Waterman
Public Affairs Director
0419 260 827

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PSA congratulates pharmacist recipients of Queen’s Birthday honours

12 Jun, 2014


The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia today congratulated two prominent Queensland pharmacists who have been honoured in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List.

Rhonda White has been made an Officer of the General Division of the Order of Australia ‘for distinguished service to the pharmacy profession, particularly through contributions to education and retail management practices, and as a role model for women in business.’

In addition, Gwynneth Petrie has been made a Member in the General Division of the Order of Australia ‘for significant service to medicine as a senior hospital pharmacist, mentor and innovator’.

National President of the PSA, Grant Kardachi, said the honours awarded to Mrs White and Mrs Petrie were a fitting recognition of their many years of commitment and dedication to the profession.

“These two pharmacists are leaders not only as health professionals, but as women and female role models and it is wholly appropriate that their work has now received broad recognition in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List,” Mr Kardachi said.

“Mrs White continues to be an inspiration for community pharmacists and leads by example, having recently undertaken training in the new area of opportunity in pharmacist-delivered immunisations.”

Mr Kardachi said that as a director of the Terry White Chemists Group, Mrs White had helped to develop an organisation which now comprised pharmacies in all states, employing more than 4,500 staff and with a turnover of $1 billion.

“This is a remarkable achievement and Rhonda’s leadership is an inspiration to all pharmacists,” he said.

Mr Kardachi said Mrs Petrie had made a great impact to hospital pharmacy, particularly in the development of clinical pharmacy services in hospitals in Australia.

“Her huge commitment to hospital pharmacy, and the difference she has made to this sector, is reflected in this award,” Mr Kardachi said.

“Mrs Petrie remains very active in the profession and her commitment to the next generation of young pharmacists is reflected in her ongoing work through the PSA intern training program.

“Both these women epitomise the principles, dedication and commitment that is a feature of the profession in Australia.”

Media contact: Peter Waterman
Public Affairs Director
0419 260 827

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This item is listed in the following categories: • Media releases • News

Victorian branches of Guild and PSA welcome inquiry into community pharmacy

12 Jun, 2014


In a first for State based politics in Victorian Government, the Victorian Legislative council has passed a motion to inquire into the role and opportunities for community pharmacy in primary and preventative care in Victoria.

The announcement of the inquiry, which is to report by October 14, 2014, has been welcomed by Michelle Lynch and Anthony Tassone, Presidents of the Victorian Branches of the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia and Pharmacy Guild of Australia respectively.

Ms Lynch said the inquiry would hopefully result in better recognition of the contribution pharmacists can play in improving the health outcomes of consumers.

“We have long been advocating for greater utilisation of the skills and knowledge of pharmacists across the broad healthcare sector and I am confident this inquiry will highlight many areas where pharmacists can make a real difference,” Ms Lynch said.

“The health system in Australia is facing a crisis and we need to use every resource we can to help avert this crisis. This inquiry will give us a further opportunity to show where pharmacists can help improve health outcomes while also meeting the Government’s health agenda and helping to contain rising costs.”

Mr Tassone congratulated the government on the initiative and was thankful for the opportunity to present the value of community pharmacy’s value.

“The Pharmacy Guild and PSA have made extensive and ongoing representations to the Victorian Health Minister and the Department, and it is pleasing there has been this progress to date.”

Mr Tassone said he was confident the inquiry would provide a unique opportunity to put forward a compelling case of the role community pharmacy can play for the health of Victorians.

“This includes areas such as post-acute healthcare, aged care, personalised medication management and vaccinations.” Mr Tassone said.

“Whilst both the Guild and the PSA are optimistic of the progress of our advocacy work to date, we will certainly not rest on our laurels and ensure our submissions and presentations to the Legislative Council of the Victorian Government will hopefully result in community pharmacy being recognised and remunerated for the great work they do and can do – for the benefit of all Victorians.”

The PSA and the Guild will make their submissions to the inquiry publicly available following their lodgement in late June.

Media Enquiries:

Stan Goma (Pharmacy Guild)                         03 9810 9999

Peter Waterman (PSA)                                   0487 922 176

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Berlin and Paris for 2015 Offshore Refresher Course

11 Jun, 2014


The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia’s Offshore Refresher Course will celebrate its 40th anniversary – its ruby anniversary – by building on the initiative of holding the conference in two cities to give delegates maximum educational and networking opportunities.

The 2015 Offshore Refresher Course will be held in Berlin and Paris and will continue the long-standing tradition of offering the highest-quality education, fantastic destinations, prestigious hotel venues and great opportunities to interact with pharmacy professionals from Australia and from the host countries.

Chair of the Offshore Refresher Conference Organising Committee, Warwick Plunkett, said the 2015 event was a very special one.

“For 40 years this event has been giving Australian pharmacists unparalleled educational and networking opportunities in some of the most iconic destinations around the world,” Mr Plunkett said.

“The initiative of holding the conference in dual cities has proven extremely popular and this year’s Offshore Refresher, held in Washington and New York, attracted a record 400-plus delegates.

“Pharmacists are telling us they like this concept as it broadens their experience and gives them a wide range of networking opportunities with representatives of the profession in different locations.

“Berlin and Paris for our Ruby Conference will provide enjoyable and effective ways to gain credits towards the mandatory education requirements while also giving delegates cultural and professional insights into France and Germany.”

Mr Plunkett said the 40th annual Offshore Conference would continue to deliver on its reputation as being the leading offshore essential practice education conference for Australian pharmacists.

Details of the 2015 event are:

Main Conference:                          Berlin 30 April – 6 May

Extended Main Conference:       Paris 6 – 10 May

Pre Conference Tour:                   Poland 25 – 30 April

Post Conference River Cruise:   Antwerp to Amsterdam 10 – 17 May

Expressions of interest for the 40th Offshore Refresher Course have opened.  Details can be found at

Media contact:     Warwick Plunkett
0412 304 450

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This item is listed in the following categories: • Media releases