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Society celebrates 25 years of its diploma in veterinary pharmacy

A lunch was held at the Royal Pharmaceutical Society's headquarters on 30 May to celebrate 25 years of the diploma in veterinary pharmacy — the only postgraduate diploma awarded by the Society.

The President, Hemant Patel, told guests that pharmacists could play a key role in acting as a link between pet owners and veterinary surgeons. The numbers of companion animals of all types was increasing. With at least a quarter of the average community pharmacy’s clients owning a cat or a dog, the opportunities for involvement in veterinary pharmacy were substantial.

The President explained that the Society had established an agricultural and veterinary pharmacy diploma in 1981 with the support of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons. In recent years the agricultural element had been dropped and a more modern, modular format adopted. He commended the course to all pharmacists looking to expand their professional expertise in veterinary pharmacy.

On behalf of the Society, the President also acknowledged the presence of John O’Brien, who was about to retire as director of licensing at the Veterinary Medicines Directorate, and thanked him for his assistance over the years.

Other guests included diplomates, lecturers, examiners and course administrators.

Andrew Cairns and Bruce Rhodes

Andrew Cairns, chairman of the group, left, in conversation with Bruce Rhodes

Bruce Rhodes, a former secretary to the Veterinary Pharmacists Group and assistant secretary of the Society, reminisced on the early days of the diploma. He outlined the important contribution made by the late Desmond Lewis, Secretary and Registrar of the Society from 1967 to 1985, in gaining the support of the RCVS and steering the idea through the Council.

Mr Rhodes also paid tribute to Michael Jepson, who had acted as director, and latterly joint director, throughout the life of the course. Mr Rhodes said that he supported the continuing availability of the Society’s only postgraduate diploma and wished aspiring diplomates every success in the future.

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal URI: 10022056

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