MPSA – Renita Busuttil

S eptember was a very active month for MPSA members. A series of health campaigns were organised aimed at bringing the pharmacist closer to the public. From the 19th until the 25th of September, MPSA celebrated World Pharmacists’ Week in collaboration with the Department of Pharmacy, during which we visited various markets, namely Birgu, Birkirkara, Zurrieq, Valletta and Zabbar. During these visits we had the opportunity to meet the Minister for Social Dialogue, Consumer Affairs & Civil Liberties, Dr Helena Dalli. Free blood glucose and blood pressure tests were offered to the public, enabling the people to be more conscious about their state of health and highlighting the importance of regular check-ups. A questionnaire regarding the use of generic medicines was also distributed so as to gain an insight to the knowledge the general public has on the use of generic medicines, as well as to create awareness about the latter.

MPSA then worked hand in hand with the Chamber of Pharmacists (Kamra Spiżjara) to bring to the public an informative, yet entertaining night full of activities at Science in the City, which has become part of the Maltese events calendar. Science in the City is a yearly event, taking place on the 25th of September in Valletta, attracting thousands of families and tourists. This year our main objective was to emphasize the importance and use of prescriptions – delivered to the public through a small sketch between a pharmacist & a patient, depicting a scene from the daily encounters of a pharmacist. This was also accompanied by a short song interpreted by all students in which all the public engaged in. In addition, throughout the night we carried health checks, a quiz for children regarding healthy eating, informative sessions about osteoporosis and an interactive live molecule building. We cannot leave out our historic corner, which took us a step back in time to the ancient practice of medicine; and last but not least our mascot “Pirmlinu l-Pingwinu“ who interacted with children, increasing their interest in our profession.

Both events were highly successful, receiving an overall positive response from the public. These were also a great opportunity for all students to gain exposure, interact with the public and practise daily tasks performed in a pharmacy.