From November 11 to November 13, 2017, pharmacists from all across Asia converged onto the International Medical University (IMU) campus in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia for the Asian Young Pharmacist Group’s Leadership Summit 2017.
The summit is the largest annual gathering for young pharmacists in the region, and this year’s summit featured a delegation from mClinica, led by founder and CEO Farouk Meralli along with COO Vasil Rusinov. mClinica’s participation in the summit could not have come at a more fitting time: SwipeRx, its mobile app, recently became the largest online community for pharmacy professionals in Asia after its launch earlier this year, counting over 55,000 registered users.
During his talk at the summit, Meralli explained how SwipeRx can help solve the problems that pharmacists face every day – they can use the platform to look up information about a particular medicine in a directory of registered drugs or even take their continuing professional development (CPD) to further their pharmaceutical education.
As a social network, perhaps the most interesting benefit of SwipeRx is the opportunity for unprecedented levels of collaboration.
“Events like this are amazing, but they happen too infrequently. What if we had the opportunity to help each other and learn from one another every single day?” Meralli asked the mixed audience of both pharmacy professionals and students, alluding to the collaborative value of SwipeRx.
Elaborating further, Meralli explained that SwipeRx gets pharmacy professionals talking with one another like never before. Some ask and share industry information, like how to renew your license or take CPD. Others help one another find drug information through SwipeRx’s directory of registered drugs. In a few cases, pharmacists even asked their fellow users for help reading prescriptions that were illegible.
Such collaboration is not only pharmacist to pharmacist, but extends to the highest levels of the public health community: Governments can issue recalls through SwipeRx in real-time and at scale.
Meralli pointed to SwipeRx’s early success – 1 in every 4 pharmacy professionals in Indonesia is now on the platform, 1 in every 4 pharmacy professionals in Cambodia, and 1 in every 3 in the Philippines – as evidence that the public health community needs this kind of platform.
Even with SwipeRx’s reception, the community can still be strengthened, as mClinica COO Vasil Rusinov noted in his subsequent remarks at the summit. Community-building of course begins through face-to-face dialogue with the leaders shaping the pharmacy practice and public health today, which the mClinica team did aplenty over the course of the three-day summit.
Here are some highlights: