The 11th General Assembly of EPhEU Employed Community Pharmacists in Europe

Leaders from the pharmacy sector gathered for the 11th General Assembly of the EPhEU Employed Community Pharmacists in Europe. Over the two-day conference, we held from the 26th to the 27th of October in Oslo, Norway.

Day 1: Assemblies, New Members, and Knowledge Sharing

The General Assembly began with the official welcome and introduction of the EPhEU members by President Katarina Fehir Šola. A highlight was the inclusion of Fagforeningen Pharmadanmark from Denmark as a new member of EPhEU, strengthening the community further.

The day was abuzz with updates from Member Associations: Austria, Croatia, France, Germany, Poland, Norway, and the United Kingdom. Each association shared unique experiences, challenges, and milestones, providing a rich tapestry of community pharmacy's journey across Europe.

However, one of the focal points of the day was the presentation on 'How to build a Union' by employee representatives Leon O'Hagan from Ireland and Dr Piotr Merks from Poland. Their insights and expertise resonated with the attendees, spotlighting the importance of unity in the sector.

Day 2: Pharmacists – The Torchbearers in Global Healthcare

The second day transitioned into addressing the bigger picture - the integral role of pharmacists in global healthcare. Several thought leaders shared their insights:

Mark Koziol delved into the current status of 'Medicines to Ukraine', highlighting the pressing need and the global response.

Bhavna Keshwala, a 2nd Year Pharmacy student, showcased the commendable efforts of the University of Portsmouth in fundraising for the cause in Ukraine.

Tasnim Khan shed light on the escalating issue of Anti-microbial resistance (AMR) and how pharmacists could be at the forefront of combating it.

Rúben Viegas addressed pharmacists' role during humanitarian crises and emphasized the importance of collaboration for humanity's benefit.

The 'Increased Oncology Competence in Ethiopia' segment by Tove Ytterbø and Wendy Klem from Pharmacists Without Borders Norway was enlightening and inspiring.

A Vision for the Future

The assembly was more than just a conference; it was a commitment. 

Moreover, the synergy between the IPSF European Regional Office and EPhEU is undeniable. Together, we aim to provide solutions and clarity to the challenges faced by community pharmacists across Europe. Our collective vision is to ensure that the community pharmacy sector survives and thrives, benefiting our half a-million members and beyond.

Here's to a future where pharmacists lead with innovation, unity, and compassion.

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