Pharmacy U

The power of partnerships. Helping the profession come together in a time of change


These are historic – and rapidly evolving – times for the pharmacy profession. Indeed, the Canadian Pharmacists Association notes that since 2008 alone there has been unprecedented change.

by donalee Moulton

Photography by Brandon Gray

Navigating these uncharted waters requires partnerships at all levels and a commitment to working with others inside and outside the profession.

The need for collaborative efforts in these tumultuous times is the theme of this year’s Leaders in Pharmacy initiative. Sponsored since its inception in 2013 by Pfizer Canada’s Global Established Pharma Business, the program celebrates those pharmacists across the country who are helping to set a course through this new landscape.

“Strategic partnerships are central to the success of the pharmacy profession as it moves towards an enhanced clinical, patient-centred healthcare model,” says Gordon Cooper, Pfizer’s director of commercial channels.

The 2016 Leaders in Pharmacy share that commitment to working with others in healthcare, government, the community, and within the profession itself. The 11 pharmacists profiled in this special feature have the experience and foresight to help break new ground for a stronger, more resourceful and more valued pharmacy sector in Canada. One thing they make clear: the profession cannot do this alone.

This year’s Leaders in Pharmacy – from community pharmacy, academia, business, and professional associations – are unanimous in their belief that the road ahead is not one that pharmacists can walk alone. True partnerships are critical, but such partnerships go beyond a signed piece of paper and a friendly handshake. They are built on relationships that have strengthened over time because they rest on a foundation of trust. And trust is earned.

Such is the nature of the partnership Pfizer has with Leaders in Pharmacy and with the pharmacy profession in Canada. “We believe in the importance of offering more than just quality medications in order to successfully impact the health of patients, and pharmacists play a key role,” says Cooper. “Pfizer’s complementary expertise supports pharmacists as they advance their clinical approach, fine-tune their business acumen, and help their patients attain positive health outcomes.”

Ultimately, of course, the goal is better care and support for patients. Pharmacists’ voices resonate more widely and deeply when they speak as one with others. But creating lasting partnerships in these changing times is not easy, our Leaders in Pharmacy stress. First relationships must be built – on trust, common ground, and shared goals. This takes time and a collective vision. The investment is undoubtedly worthwhile. Patients benefit, the profession progresses, and business thrives.

“Strong strategic partnerships are based on a shared vision and a common goal,” says Cooper. One example of this, he notes, is the collaborative efforts that occur with patient-adherence programs that enable pharmacists to demonstrate their value to patients and the medical system. “These strategic partnerships highlight how pharmacy and Pfizer are aligned.”

Those are also the types of partnerships – lasting, effective, and forward-thinking – that you will read about in the pages that follow. Pharmacy Business is proud to introduce you to the industry leaders across Canada who have formed such partnerships and who are helping the pharmacy profession in this country chart a new, bolder course in these rapidly changing times.

Meet the 2016 Leaders in Pharmacy.


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