Pharmacists Listen to HIV Positive Women

Pharmacists Listen to HIV Positive Women

In the first of a proposed series of discussions with the International Community of Women Living with HIV/AIDS (ICW), CPA members listened carefully to the concerns of HIV positive women, worldwide. Difficulties in accessing services, limited knowledge of HIV infection and its treatment, were significant issues for women in all communities. CPA acknowledges the need for pharmacists to take a proactive role in addressing these and other health-related problems faced by all HIV positive people. The Joint Statement below was prepared by CPA and ICW following this initial meeting.

09 November, 2004
Pharmacists Listen to HIV Positive Women and Girls

In response to the 2004 UNAIDS theme: “Women, Girls, HIV and AIDS – Have you heard me today?”, the Commonwealth Pharmaceutical Association (CPA) is encouraging pharmacist members to listen carefully to their patients and customers – especially those who are HIV positive and those suffering with AIDS.

“Community pharmacists are the most accessible of all health care providers,” says CPA President, Mrs Grace Allen Young. “Pharmacists are trustworthy, have good communication and listening skills and they have expert knowledge of medications. We encourage HIV positive women and girls to feel confident in talking with their pharmacist. We encourage all pharmacists to listen carefully to the concerns and needs of these patients and to be proactive in counselling young women especially – the most vulnerable members of our communities,” Mrs Allen Young said.

Through their global campaign “Pharmacists Listen”, the Commonwealth Pharmaceutical Association is working to raise community awareness of the pharmacist as a valuable and authoritative source of information on HIV/AIDS. More and more pharmacists are now trained to counsel HIV and AIDS patients and are committed to doing so in a professional, confidential and caring manner. Pharmacists will also provide contact details and information on voluntary counselling and testing services available through accredited agencies in the local community. The Role of the Pharmacist in the Prevention & Management of HIV/AIDS is defined in the Association’s “Ocho Rios Statement”.

CPA member associations throughout the Commonwealth will be holding “Pharmacists Listen” events during the period leading up to and on World AIDS Day.

Members of the Executive of CPA will be meeting with representatives of the International Community of Women Living with HIV/AIDS, at meetings in London in lead up to World AIDS Day to discuss ways in which pharmacists can play a more active role in the management of the disease and provide support for HIV positive women and girls.

For more information contact:
John Bell,
Secretary,
Commonwealth Pharmaceutical Association,
Email: john.bell@hcn.net.au