IAI – FAPA Webinar: Roles of Pharmacists in Optimizing Care for Muslim Patients During Ramadan – UPDATE: WEBINAR RECORDING NOW AVAILABLE!
April 17, 2022
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May 23, 2022

Culturally Competent Pharmacists Can Improve Health Outcomes Among Muslim Patients


The Indonesian Pharmacists Association (IAI) held a webinar on 23rd April 2022 with the title: Roles of Pharmacists in Optimizing Care of Muslim Patients During Ramadan, focusing on how culturally competent pharmacists can promote medication safety and confidence in pharmaceutical products and services among Muslim Patients. This event was conceptualized and organized together with the Federation of Asian Pharmaceutical Associations (FAPA) and Federation of Taiwan Pharmacy Associations (FTPA).
The event covered common problems encountered during the month of Ramadan where fasting can affect the intake of medications, with patients unknowingly putting themselves at risk by omitting doses of certain medications or doubling the subsequent doses after breaking their fast. Pharmacist Dr. apt. Lusy Noviani from Indonesia highlighted that patient safety should always be the priority citing examples of how to assess and manage risks among patients such as those with diabetes.
Mr. Amrahi Buang, president of the Malaysian Pharmaceutical Society (MPS), also discussed how Halal certification of pharmaceuticals can increase the confidence of Muslim patients in taking their medications and shared their existing standards, references and process of certification in Malaysia. He emphasized how cultural competence of both pharmacists and the pharmaceutical industry can empower patients to make good and well-informed decisions regarding their health and treatment.
In the panel discussion, Ms. Christine Catoera, the representative from the Philippine Pharmacist Association (PPhA), highlighted the challenges encountered by Muslims in a country where they are considered a minority including the low awareness among pharmacists on religious practices that could affect medication adherence and lack of reliable information and guidance to support the needs of Muslim patients. Dr. Rabail Kanwal, Lady Representative of Pakistan Pharmacists Association (PPA) also reminded that pharmacists should also support patients after Ramadan by checking whether they are able to go back to their normal and optimal regimen and also consider other lifestyle factors that could affect their health status. Dr. Nadia Al Mazrouei, representative from the United Arab Emirates and president of the Eastern Mediterranean Regional Pharmaceutical Forum, highlighted that the issues discussed exist in countries with Muslim communities across the region, whether they are a minority or considered the majority and the opportunities for collaboration on this topic.

FAPA President Dr. Yolanda Robles expressed the commitment of FAPA to promote collaboration in the region and the development of technical references to guide Asian pharmacists on this topic and expressed gratitude to Dr. apt. Nurul Falah, president of IAI, for his leadership and initiative to organize the webinar that opened up this discussion among different Asian countries. FAPA secretary-general Ms. Christine Benosa added that promoting cultural competence is only one among many initiatives where each member association of FAPA plays an important role in contributing what they can for the improvement of the profession and healthcare systems not only in their countries but for the whole region.
The webinar also featured the signing of the MOU between the IAI and FTPA, and Mr. Jin-shun Huang expressed that Taiwan pharmacists are committed to support and collaborate with IAI, and other pharmacy associations, recalling the slogan of former FAPA President Mr. Joseph Wang, “We are one”. In his speech, Dr. Nurul Falah, also shared the advantages of having good international working relations such as the partnership with FAPA and FAPA foundation and look forward to more future activities and programs. Moderator Anggun shared that participants can look forward to more discussions similar to this webinar in the upcoming FAPA Congress to be held online and in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on November 10-12, 2022.
Click here to watch the whole webinar on YouTube.