Two days working at Markt Apotheke (well only for half day everyday) already proven how differ it is the community pharmacy setting in Malaysia from the German’s.
German’s community pharmacy setting is well established. They have the ordering and purchasing system which is very systematic. The delivery system of medicinal products from the wholesalers are efficient and fast which comes in the morning and afternoon. These wholesalers are link to all the pharmacy in German (if I’m not mistaken) or maybe according to area.
Apart from the efficiency and systematic ordering and purchasing system, Markt Apotheke still compounds creams, emulsion, ointments (salbe) and medicinal wine. Today i had been thought on how to make ointments and cream. This is one of the biggest differences between a pharmacy in Malaysia and German. In Malaysia, so far that i know, there is no community pharmacy that practice extemporaneous compounding. If there is a pharmacy which provide this kind of service in Malaysia,please let me know cause i intend to become an intern to improve my compounding skills.
We (pharmacy students) learnt dosage form back in the first year which we make suppositories, emulsions, creams, ointments, suspensions, tablets, injections and suspensions but now i hardly remember it. We only do it like once or twice due to time limitation during our first year. I do remember the little-by-little, aseptic technique, oil in water , water in oil and bla bla bla but when it comes to real practice dang! It is not as simple as that. Due to communication barrier i cant really try my best in Markt Apotheke because most of the time I’m trying to pick up the words and worrying about the language instead of focusing on what I’m doing. The PTA, Kara if I’m not mistaken(i dont know how to spell her name) tried her best to help me and its nice of her and it makes me sad and feel sorry and mad at myself for not being able to talk to her in German.
My skills in compounding is bad. Back then i was better. What a waste isn’t it? Its like after you graduated you are only equip with theoretical informations. In germany extemporaneous preparation is a must for a pharmacist to know. They are experts on herbs which makes them the chef of medicinal preparation. With their knowledge on herbs they can prepare lots of medicinal preparations to suit people need. I believe this is what a pharmacist should be in the first place. Unfortunately my love is still for research and development in the industry. Totally in different area of being a pharmacist.
Oh yeah talking about the difference, the obvious difference is of course the dispensing rights.
This issue has been in debate for many years. Doctors in Malaysia are given rights to dispense drugs themselves from their clinic. In a private clinic no pharmacist is needed there. Which come to a big question, what are the function of producing lots of pharmacist in Malaysia. They end up opening a pharmacy which is not systematic according to my opinion. I’m lost when it comes to the role of pharmacist in Malaysia. Maybe that is why I am more into Industry cause i can see what effects can i give towards the public. If i were to end up in the hospital I’m not sure i will become a good pharmacist or not. Luckily i have the chance to experience community pharmacy setting in Markt Apotheke, Stadtoldendorf , German. It brings a good experience and change my point of view towards what a community pharmacy can do. I know the theory of role of pharmacist but then i cant see how does it apply in Malaysian setting. Perhaps later once i got my licence i can open a pharmacy shop which follow the guidelines made by the European.
Anyway, in Europeans country, the doctor does not have the right to dispense drug. All they can do is write a prescription and the patient will bring the prescription (rezept) to the pharmacy(apotheke). The cost mostly will be covered by insurance.
I remembered that a research is carried out to make insurance system for Malaysians. I was helping distributing the questionnaire with a face-to-face method. Most Malaysians don’t agree with that system. Well that is another problem. haha
The way how the pharmacy in Europe operate especially the ordering (bestellung) and managing system. I believe with this kind of system there will be zero dispensing error and it will be cost-effective. Below is from an article from The Star Newspaper:
“Community pharmacies are much like a personal store in Malaysia. Rarely will you witness patients requesting their medication to be made based on the prescriptions given by fellow doctors.
Why is Malaysia’s pre-registration training for pharmacy graduates restricted to only hospital and industrial settings? What about the community pharmacy sector?
What does the future hold for the future of pharmacists in Malaysia? When will the dispensing right be given fully to community pharmacists?”
The way they store their medicines is super-duper-systematic and they keep tract of every products with just a simple scan and click. They do not store many boxes of medicines and they purchased enough stocks for the used everyday.This is definitely cost effective. This is very different from Malaysia. In Malaysia, from what i can see most of the medicines in a pharmacy is in a bulk quantity which i strongly believe it is not practical at all.
First it is a waste since not all medications will be sell due to our dispensing right issue. Secondly bad storage management (products by in a bulk, cant be sell, expiry date is near).
ahh to make it simple. Its a bad business. This is not due to the pharmacist false entirely. Its just there is no specific regulations for community pharmacist as what in German’s have. No harm though to try to open a pharmacy according to the European guidelines. As long the public is being protected from harm and the pharmacy business is cost-effective i think it would be good. Apart from that, the wholesaler’s system is not directly link to a pharmacy as what the pharmacy in German’s are having. I wish i could know more about it and discuss it but im not good in their language so all i can do now is observe.
I really admire the way the system runs. Which i think it would benefit the human life.
If there is a pharmacy in Malaysia which follow this guideline perhaps one day they can become a benchmark in Malaysia. Dream big people!
ahh im tired already.
Danke Shon Mr Michael Wendt and the people in Markt Apotheke