Tempus IV – Postgraduate Qualification in Pharmacy: The Way Forward
Members of the Pharmacy Practice Research Group are part of an international consortium that has successfully bid for European Commission funding under the Tempus IV programme. The team was awarded €751,586 for the project Postgraduate Qualification in Pharmacy: The Way Forward (Tempus project JP 158897-2009). Co-ordinated by Prof. Jelena Parojčić at the University of Belgrade, this work focuses on continuing professional development for pharmacists and pharmaceutical scientists in the Republic of Serbia.
There is already an established professional specialization system in the Serbian pharmaceutical sector with ten postgraduate specialization programmes delivered at the Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Belgrade, eight of them endorsed by the Ministry of Health. The programmes address the following areas: (i) Pharmaceutical Marketing and Management, (ii) Pharmacoeconomics and Pharmaceutical Legislation, (iii) Pharmaceutical Care, (iv) Industrial Pharmacy and (v) Cosmetology.
However, it has been recognized that the existing curricula do not fully satisfy the evolving needs of the pharmacy profession and pharmaceutical industry. Moreover, Serbia has applied for accession to the European Union and if successful, will be required to meet the harmonized EU regulatory standards.
Accordingly, this project is directed at improving the quality and effectiveness of the postgraduate curricula at the University of Belgrade, initiating postgraduate programmes at the other Republic of Serbia Universities, and developing the concept of continuing professional development within the Serbian pharmaceutical sector. Planned activities include curriculum review, facilitation of staff development and staff mobility, exchange of academic materials, preparation of educational resources, development of an e-learning platform, and organization of meetings, conferences and workshops.
This international consortium is multi-disciplinary, with members drawn from the pharmacy, medical and scientific communities. TCD School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences was the sole institution in Ireland invited to participate, based on its significant experience and expertise in postgraduate education and training. Deirdre D'Arcy (national lead), Sheila Ryder and Fabio de Sousa Menezes are the named personnel from the School.
The members of the consortium are:
- University of Belgrade, Republic of Serbia
- School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Trinity College Dublin, Ireland
- University of Ljubljana, Slovenia
- School of Pharmacy, University of London, UK
- Joint Programmes Board, London, UK
- University of Greenwich, UK
- University of Novi Sad, Republic of Serbia
- University of Nis, Republic of Serbia
- University of Kragujevac, Republic of Serbia
- Society of Medical Biochemists of Serbia, Republic of Serbia
- Serbian Pharmaceutical Society, Republic of Serbia
- Pharmaceutical Chamber of Serbia, Republic of Serbia
- Medical Biochemistry Chamber of Serbia, Republic of Serbia
- Ministry of Health, Republic of Serbia
- Ministry of Education, Republic of Serbia
- Daan Crommelin, Dutch Top Institute Pharma, Netherlands
- Prof. J. Graham Davies, King's College, London, UK
Some of the consortium's initial work was presented as a poster at the 2010 European Association of Faculties of Pharmacy (EAFP) Conference in Catania, Sicily where it won first prize. The poster, which outlined the development of training for a 'qualified person' (responsible for maintaining standards and product release in the pharmaceutical industry), was judged to have addressed key themes being pursued by the EAFP – bringing different countries and different academic disciplines together and taking an innovative approach to raising standards in pharmaceutical education.
The initiative will run from January 2010 to January 2013. Additional information is available at the project website: http://pqpharm.ac.rs/