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35M People Battling Drugs Worldwide …Says WAPCP President

By Grace Q. Bryant

The president of West African Postgraduate College, C.I Igwilo expressed that the 2019 WHO Report reveals that 35 million people worldwide are suffering drug abuse.
Explaining about drug abuse which contributes to crimes, poverty, dysfunctional families, burden of disease and premature deaths yesterday at the West African Postgraduate College of Pharmacists (WAPCP) 35th Annual general meeting and scientific symposium in Liberia held at Paynesville Town Hall, Madam Igwilo noted that these are threats to the future workforce. according to her, the topic has been carefully selected considering the menace associated with substance abuse and the need to aggressively stem the tide against the scourge of substance abuse in sub-Africa.
The program began formally with investiture of fellows from March 20 to Thursday March 23, bringing together delegates from across the countries including Representatives of National Pharmaceutical Societies of Benin, Gambia, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone and the Liberia Government officials.
WAPCP is an agency of the West African Health Organization founded October 13, 1976 in Monrovia, Liberia to facilitate the lifting of the ban of made in Nigeria drugs in the West African Region.
According to her, the unfortunate death of children in the Gambia alleged to be as a result of contaminated drugs; adding that a team of experts was quickly sent by WAPCP to help give a timely assistance.
“Their intervention was a huge success as they advised stakeholders on steps to take avert future occurrence for which the government of Gambia expressed appreciation,” she added.
Serving as keynote speaker at the occasion, Prof. Hasipha C. Tarpeh recommended that the West African Postgraduate College of Pharmacists works tirelessly playing a meaningful role in providing remedy to the substance abuse situation confronting the region.
He said with support from governments of member states at the institution, the problems caused by substance abuse across West African countries could be resolved appropriately.
According to Prof. Tarpeh, the vision of the WAPCP aiming at being internationally recognized as a center of excellence that promotes the teaching, research and training in post-graduate pharmacy education from the development of pharmacy specialist to meet the challenge of healthcare, said vision can only be realized when the future generation is sober-minded and sound to take on challenges of perpetuating and strengthening the existing foundations.
He suggested that there is need to organize community outreach programs in member states to include substance abuse-counseling; information dissemination, prevention of education, adding that this must involve the full participation of relevant community structures such as organs of government, religious, groups, schools and universities.
Welcoming the guests, the chairman of COC Joseph Quoi said the theme for the conference, ‘Substance Abuse; A Threat to Future Workforce’ is very suitable at this time when Liberia is battling the issues of substance use as public health threat.

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