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Dr Robert Edinger with Son David

MS Degree in Health System Pharmacy, Indian

I am an Indian man who was born, raised and currently reside in India. I hold a Bachelor of Pharmacy degree from XXXX University. My interest in pharmacy was fired as a young child. The father of a school friend was a pharmacist and he became aware of my interest in his work. He explained to me that his duties involved more than just dispensing medicine but also in providing important primary healthcare as his was often the first medical opinion that people sought. He told me that a good pharmacist is not only scientifically knowledgeable but is also a good listener and communicator, is observant and, of course, meticulously careful. My teachers and parents considered that I had these personal qualities and so confirmed me in my ambition. My choice of subjects at school were chosen with Pharmacy in mind and culminated in my going to college and obtaining my Bachelor’s degree in the subject. I have never regretted this path which I regard more as a vocation than a career choice.

 My first job was as a medical representative in India and this provided some very useful and formative experiences, it was an ‘eye opener’. I learnt that not all pharmacists, by any means, shared my high ideals. I visited numerous pharmacies in my sales territory and was sometimes shocked and sometimes saddened by what I saw when pharmacists or their staff interacted with patients. Some pharmacists were unqualified; some were clearly indifferent to their patients’ needs and appeared to be motivated only by profit. Some substituted cheaper medicines for those prescribed, some were dangerously vague or ignorant when providing dosage information. I became aware that the hard won skills and knowledge of some young pharmacists were underused and that this understandably created frustration and cynicism amongst them.  It was certainly not all ‘bad news’, I did also come across knowledgeable and caring pharmacists who provided excellent advice to patients but there are an insufficient number of them in my country. I hope to help change this state of affairs.

 In India there is a high incidence of diabetes and hypertension and the role of the pharmacist is pivotal in helping patients control these illnesses. Unfortunately they are currently often ill-served by the pharmacists to whom they turn for help. Again, I have an ambition to help change this situation for the better.

 Later in my career, it became clear to me that hospital pharmacies are sometimes run by people recruited only on the basis of their professional qualifications but who lack the administrative, management and leadership skills necessary to properly fulfill their roles. I sought and continue seek to acquire those skills so that I can be an effective and inspiring manager of pharmacists and technicians.

 It is my hope, having completed the program, initially to set up a ‘model pharmacy’ in India that will provide the very best service and care. Once this ‘model’ is meeting its targets in terms of customer satisfaction, to then replicate that model slowly into a chain of pharmacies ensuring that every branch is inculcated with the highest ideals of service to patients.

 I want to change the whole way that the profession is viewed, and views itself, in my country. This may sound overly ambitious but someone has to make a serious start if the situation is to be improved and there is no reason why that the person should not be me. However I know that I need the management, financial and other training tailored to the world of pharmacy that your program offers before I can do so.

 Excellence is unavoidably infectious in the markets since one good pharmacy in a town will attract, by reputation, an unusually high number of customers. This will encourage competitors to emulate the ‘winners’ in the market. Similarly an efficient and well run hospital pharmacy will result in cost-savings and greater patient satisfaction and other hospitals will naturally seek to have a share in the expertise that can provide them with the same advantages.  I hope, with your help, to be a catalyst for highly beneficial changes in my country’s pharmacy ‘industry’.

 I know that your program will attract many highly qualified applicants but I am convinced that I can bring some very useful insights to the academic community and that, with the benefit of the expertise I shall acquire, I can begin to make real improvements to the lives of many of my countrymen and women.

 Thank you for considering my application. 

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