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Leaders in Pharmacy 2019: Manon Lambert

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A typical day for Manon Lambert is anything but typical. The Quebec College of Pharmacists’ executive director may take a call from the Ministry of Health, speak with a registrant about scope of practice, meet with a representative from a pharmacy association and assist staff with current projects. “No day is the same,” says Lambert. “As executive director, I deal with board members, oversee governance, develop policies – and more.” What remains consistent is her dedication to do her part, as a regulator, to help advance the profession of pharmacy, so that patients can be confident about the quality of care provided by pharmacists.

 

by donalee Moulton

 

EDUCATION: University of Montreal (Pharmacy)
CURRENT ROLE: Executive Director, College of Pharmacists of Quebec [L’Ordre des pharmaciens du Québec]

A typical day for Manon Lambert is anything but typical. The Quebec College of Pharmacists’ executive director may take a call from the Ministry of Health, speak with a registrant about scope of practice, meet with a representative from a pharmacy association and assist staff with current projects. “No day is the same,” says Lambert. “As executive director, I deal with board members, oversee governance, develop policies – and more.” What remains consistent is her dedication to do her part, as a regulator, to help advance the profession of pharmacy, so that patients can be confident about the quality of care provided by pharmacists.

What would you say to pharmacy graduates about the opportunities ahead in pharmacy?

Some people predict a dark future for the profession because of online sales and other issues. Everybody wants to pay less for medicine and advice. But where there is change, there is opportunity. A crisis forces you to question what you do and how you do it – and that can only benefit patients and the profession. More than ever pharmacists are considered to be professionals who can help patients and contribute to the health system. We must build on that.

How has your role evolved since you first started in the field?

I graduated in 1985 and, as with every profession, there has been tremendous change since then. But the biggest changes have occurred in the last five to 10 years, with scope of practice. We are now redefining the profession. We have to be visionary. We need to be seen as part of the solution – and we must be patient-focused.

What will be the biggest changes in pharmacy in the next decade?

The profession will have to decide for itself what it wants to be. Are you a health professional or a vendor? Revenue is undoubtedly needed to maintain a successful business, but this is not what defines us. Pharmacists need to maximize the opportunity to connect with the patient. Professional independence and autonomy will be critical. As a college, we are the gatekeeper. The public must continue to have confidence in the profession. They must understand that pharmacists are here for the patient and not for other reasons, or for their business partners.

How do you see the pharmacist interacting with the healthcare team and with patients in the future?

This is a real opportunity. Interdisciplinary teams have been part of hospitals for some time. It’s a challenge in community practice, but so important for the patient. In Quebec, pharmacists are just starting to work more with front-line healthcare workers. We get to see what each healthcare professional brings to the process for the betterment of our patients. A few years ago, we released a joint position paper that concluded that silo practices between doctors, pharmacists and nurses are a thing of the past. We have to work together.

What actions do you think pharmacists need to take to enhance the value they bring to patients?

Pharmacists must have more confidence in their training, their professional judgment, and themselves. That is often lacking. With confidence comes the assurance to provide a higher level of care to the patient. That is the way of the future.

Click here for a video featuring all the 2019 Leaders in Pharmacy:

  • Video featuring all the 6th annual Leaders in Pharmacy

Leaders in Pharmacy, including this independently written article, is supported by Pfizer Canada Inc.

 

This article appeared originally in the January 2019 issue of Pharmacy Practice + Business and Canadian Healthcare Network.