Pacific Pharmacists’ Association addressing the 'information gap' for Pacific population

Diana Phone, Vice-President of the Pacific Pharmacists' Association

A Pacific Pharmacists’ Association (PPA) initiative headed by vice-president Diana Phone aims to address the “information gap” for Pacific populations and the public about accessing medicines and pharmacy services.

“Over the lockdown period I was talking to my colleagues and I started to realise all the challenges that Pacific populations were facing accessing medicines,” says Auckland-based pharmacist Diana Phone.

Information for Pacific people and the public in general about pharmacy services, medicines and COVID-19 is now available in a downloadable format from the Health Navigator website. The information has been translated into nine Pacific languages and is also available in English.

“But anyone of any culture can translate that information in their language for their community. It could also be translated into Māori or other languages for refugee populations,” says Diana.

This initiative is part of the PPA’s strategic objectives to deliver medicines and pharmacy related information to Pacific communities in an easy to understand format.

“We wanted to make the information easy to understand, not full of medical jargon,” explains Diana.

“COVID is going to have a long impact on the life of many people – especially people with long term conditions. Some are not seeking health services when they should be, and some are not able to pay for their medicines because it’s a balance between buying medicines and putting food on the table,” Diana explains.

“The information is not rocket science, but it can help people navigate a complex health system, she says.

“It covers things like what to do if you have problems picking up your medicine from your pharmacy, how to get financial support if you can’t pay for your medicines, and the range of services that community pharmacies can offer to help you keep healthy.”

By putting this information out there in an easy to understand format we’re hoping that people will know that their pharmacist is available if they have any issues. We’re here to help.”

The PPA is grateful for the support from Health Navigator for assisting with the design work, and for Pharmac‘s support of assisting with and funding the translations.

Access the resource here: https://www.healthnavigator.or...