Pharmacy Old and New Concept
I would like to start this blog by telling the readers a brief story about pharmacy in my country, Sudan. The dream of all fathers and mothers in Sudan is to see his son or daughter study either medicine or engineering otherwise it is a waste of time. So when the time comes to submit my application for admission to the university my father and mother, both, they have the same wish that I am going to study medicine and they were surprised by my desire to study pharmacy. They admitted that pharmacy is a good science but my future will be either working in a retail pharmacy or in the best scenario in pharmaceutical industry. My parents requested my grandmother to try changing my mind, but at that time she was suffering from GIT disturbances and my sister prepared a peppermint tea for her. I asked my grandmother why do you want to drink this tea it is better to go and see the doctor, he is going to be more useful for you, but she refused and her answer was that she learned this from her experience throughout her long life. I told her what she just did is pharmacy.
Pharmacy has no founder or initiator it had been created due to the needs of human being to heal himself. Observing the surrounding nature had gained the human being the required knowledge for simple pharmacy and medicine and that was the starting point which had been led later by a lot of famous and prominent scientists from all over the world, neither only their knowledge nor contributions enrich the pharmacy as a science but the rich inheritance of the human being enlighten their way to resurrect this natural inheritance and translated it into applied useful knowledge for prosperity of human life .
The real separation of pharmacy profession from medicine occurred in the ninth century during the Arabian civilization. The pharmacy shops not only founded in Baghadad the capital of the Islamic State but also scattered in other cities of the state. This foundation of pharmacy as separate profession accompanied by the establishment of the legislation process to organize the practice of pharmacy and also to assure the quality and safety of the pharmaceutical products which had been formulated by skilled pharmacist in the apothecary's art . No longer had the Europeans also adopted the trend towards the specialization which was later provoked by a law enacted in the city council of Bruges in 1683 forbidding physicians to prepare medicines for their patients. Benjamin Franklin followed the Europeans and appointed an apothecary to the Pennsylvania Hospital, USA. This development happened all over the world in China, India and Japan .
The World War II had led to new discoveries in pharmacy and presence of new API. As a result, the role of pharmacist had been changed which reflected in the type of pharmaceutical education had been provided. The first college of pharmacy was established in 1821, and now known as Philadelphia College of pharmacy and science, USA . Since the pharmacists are in a unique position to serve people providing them the required information for effective and safe use of their medicines; the idea of pharmacy start to change from a product oriented knowledge into a patient care knowledge . This change known as the pharmaceutical care plan from which the clinical pharmacy had born. We needed centuries to get the ideas of the pharmaceutical care plan, but if we look back to the history of pharmacy, these ideas were already there because most of the practicing pharmacists at that time were physicians like the Avicenna of 980-1037 AD, Emperor Huang-ti 3000 BC, Galen 160 AD, ...etc .
Now a day's pharmacy is not only product or patient oriented pharmacy but a mixture of them. The mixture resulted in applying the needs of patients on the pharmaceutical formulation giving us new and advanced methods of formulation, new dosage forms and new technologies so as to have high patient compliance which in its all view comes to enrich the pharmaceutical care plan and that could be considered as the turning points in pharmacy. The presence of modified release dosage forms and recently the presence of Nanotechnology (material engineering and life sciences)  provide and provoke changes in the basic core of pharmacy making a big jump into a new era of pharmacy.
As a conclusion the pharmacist role now changed from dispensing medicines into providing health services on a multilevel (pharmacy shops, hospitals, Drug information centers, Pharmaceutical industries).
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A. Y. Waddad