Nurturing Pharmacists as an Evolving Discipline


With a total of 96 pharmacists filling up more than 1.7 million prescriptions annually, KPJ Healthcare Berhad (“KPJ Healthcare” or the “Company”) is committed to ensuring that the role of pharmacists across its network of hospitals nationwide continue to evolve in tandem with patients’ needs.

Often misunderstood as representing a traditional health profession, the critical role of pharmacists within the pharmaceutical industry has undergone great evolution over the years. In addition to daily procurement, quality control, counselling patients and caregivers, and routine management of medicines, pharmacists today are involved in specialised compounding services such as aseptic dispensing for chemotherapy, and even perform prescription interventions and medication therapy management reviews in order to minimise medication errors.

Offering end-to-end support for pharmacists from education to their careers, KPJ Healthcare through its education arm, KPJ Healthcare University College (“KPJUC”), provides multi-faceted growth through its School of Pharmacy, having produced close to 1,100 pharmacy assistants for the domestic and international healthcare sector.

KPJUC’s School of Pharmacy comprises four esteemed programmes, including Master of Science in Pharmaceutical Technology, Bachelor of Pharmacy (Hons), Bachelor of Pharmaceutical Science with Health Sciences (Hons) and Diploma in Pharmacy, with a Master of Pharmacy programme expected to be launched early next year. Additionally, a Centre of Excellence for Pharmaceutical Sciences (“CoEPS”) was formally established in 2019, focusing on initiatives for academic research to be incorporated in the pharmaceutical industry. Recently, the School of Pharmacy also secured RM200,000 in external research grants from Aafiyat Group, whereby four clinical research studies will be carried out at CoEPS and KPJ Seremban Specialist Hospital.

“The role of pharmacists has become increasingly important, be it at the hospital, retail pharmacy, purchase and distribution, academia, research, and others. Moving with the times, we have pioneered numerous pharmaceutical advancements in our hospitals, from safe storage, dispensing, computerised physician orders, outpatient pharmacy modules and overall workflow upgrading, in accordance with best practices in the industry. Furthermore, the growing awareness of female empowerment in the pharmaceutical profession is indeed commendable, and I believe this plays a key role in enhancing service excellence and quality,” said Norhaizam Mohammad, Officer in Charge (“OIC”) cum Chief Financial Officer (“CFO”) of KPJ Healthcare, during the World Pharmacist Day Celebration 2022 organised by KPJ Healthcare at KPJUC, Nilai.

Close to 120 people were in attendance, consisting of students, pharmacists, training bodies and KPJ Healthcare’s workforce, celebrating the annual global theme of “Pharmacy united in action for a healthier world”.

Providing job opportunities for pharmacists, apart from its network of hospitals, KPJ Healthcare’s home-grown retail brand Healthshoppe has four JX Pharmacies (located in Bangi, Kota Damansara, VistaAlam and Sri Manjung), ten brick and mortar Healthshoppes in various KPJ Hospitals, and a self-managed e-commerce platform, KPJShoppe.com. Expansion plans within and beyond KPJ Hospitals are in the works, with up to 26 outlets slated to be opened by 2027, enabling pharmacists to grow their careers with KPJ Healthcare.

At the height of the pandemic, pharmacists from across KPJ Hospitals and retail pharmacies came together to contribute their expertise and extend much-needed assistance in coordinating supply chain management at two KPJ-operated Mega Vaccination Centres (“Mega PPVs”) located at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre and The Mall Mid Valley Southkey Johor Bahru, receiving stock and ensuring cold chain maintenance. Their dedicated efforts in troubleshooting issues, reporting adverse drug reactions, attending to drug information requests and managing daily statistical reports clearly reflected their critical role in the healthcare industry.

By the end of 2021, with the aid of these unsung heroes, a total of close to 1 million vaccinations were successfully administered by KPJ Healthcare’s Mega PPVs.

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