25th Singapore Pharmacy Congress 2015
2015 marks a special year as the Pharmaceutical Society of Singapore (PSS) celebrates its 110th Anniversary, together with NUS Pharmacy which is also commemorating its 110th founding Anniversary along with NUS and Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine. NUS Pharmacy and PSS came together to co-organise the 25th Singapore Pharmacy Congress from 12 to 13 September. The theme of the congress was “Pioneering Care for Tomorrow”, with focus on celebrating the achievements of the profession's pioneers. The programme also presented novel yet practical pioneering initiatives for the betterment of patients. The congress was officially opened by Prof Benjamin ONG, Director of Medical Services, Ministry of Health (MOH).
The partnership between NUS Pharmacy and PSS enabled participants to gain a better understanding of how integrating science and practice can impact tomorrow’s healthcare needs. Six pre-congress workshops preceded the main congress, each addressing a topic of pertinence to registered pharmacists, pre-registered pharmacists and pharmacist technicians. NUS Pharmacy also hosted two pre-congress workshops, namely “An Introduction to Pharmacometrics in Pharmacotherapy” and “Unravelling the Mystery around Biologics”.
To engage a wider audience, the congress’s scientific committee designed a programme that was broad-based. More than 50 overseas and local speakers gave talks.
In line with MOH’s Healthcare Masterplan 2020 to integrate healthcare services to provide seamless patient care, the two-day congress started with keynote speaker Dr Helen TAYLOR, Divisional Clinical Director, Integrated Care, University College London Hospitals sharing her experience in pioneering integrated care in the UK. This was followed by a plenary lecture and a panel discussion where physicians and pharmacists from local institutions collaboratively showcased several homegrown integrated care initiatives. Prof Ka-Kit Hui, Founder and Director at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) Centre for East-West Medicine was also invited to share his vast clinical experiences on Integrative East-West medicine.
Various NUS Pharmacy Faculty members also gave lectures at the event. Prof CHUI Wai Keung, Head of NUS Pharmacy, gave a presentation on “Beyond the Bachelor degree – what are the options?”. He joined Prof Lita CHEW, Chief Pharmacist, Pharmacy, Office of the Director of Medical Services, and Dr LOU Huei Xin, Director, Medications Management Capabilities and Clinical Safety, Governance & Measurements, Ministry of Health Holdings (MOHH) Pte Ltd (Singapore), to address the audience on “Transforming the Pharmacy Landscape in Singapore”. This session outlined the strategic plans to train the pharmacy workforce and to enhance service to meet future needs.
Prof WEE Hwee Lin spoke at the breakfast symposium on “Cost-effectiveness of aspirin for primary prevention of cardiovascular disease and cancer”. Prof Andrea KWA shared on “Beta-lactams and azoles TDM – new horizons in optimising drug exposure”. Dr Kevin Yap gave an insightful talk on the development of games to enhance students’ skills in medication management. Dr YAP Kai Zhen and her collaborators from the community pharmacy presented their research findings in managing patients with allergic rhinitis. In addition, adjunct faculty members, Profs CHAN Cheng Leng and SIA Chong Hock spoke on regulatory affairs in different sessions.
The event was a success, with attendance of over 600 pharmacists from various disciplines, including those from hospitals, the community, industry, regulatory bodies and academia. The congress also saw more than 80 abstracts being submitted under four main categories: “Health Services and Outcomes”, “Pharmacy Practice”, “Pharmaceutical Science” and “Pharmacy Education”.
Prof Benjamin Ong, Director of Medical Services, Ministry of Health (MOH) giving his opening address
Pharmacists introducing the Pharmacy Week Project to the Guest-of-Honour Prof Benjamin Ong, Director of Medical Services, Ministry of Health (MOH)
Prof Chui Wai Keung, Head of NUS Pharmacy, speaking on options beyond a Bachelor’s degree
Prof Chan Cheng Leng, Health Products Regulation, Health Sciences Authority (HSA) delivering an update on Pharmacy legislations in Singapore