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New handbook encourages pharmacists to take a more active role in vector-borne diseases

A handbook to support pharmacists in preventing, controlling, managing and treating vector-borne diseases is published today by FIP. Some of these diseases, such as malaria and dengue, previously confined to tropical and subtropical areas, are now spreading to new regions due to climate change, increased global travel, migration, global trade, deforestation and unplanned urbanisation, and FIP is encouraging pharmacists to take a more active role in their prevention and management. 

“Vector-borne diseases account for nearly one fifth of all infectious diseases and cause over 700,000 deaths every year. In addition to their health burden, their economic impact is enormous, especially so because they disproportionally affect the world’s poorest countries, particularly in Africa, the Americas and South-East Asia,” said FIP president Dominique Jordan.

The new publication, “Vector-borne diseases: A handbook for pharmacists”, produced in collaboration with the Pharmaceutical Forum of the Americas, provides an overview of vector-borne diseases and the actions that pharmacists can take. It discusses:

  • Educating on prevention methods;
  • Advising on the use of repellents;
  • Compounding mosquito repellents;
  • Improving vaccination coverage;
  • Optimising adherence to treatments; and
  • Reducing social stigma.

“Combating vector-borne diseases is fundamental for achieving many of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. Most of these diseases are preventable and pharmacists are ideally placed to support communities and patients in protecting themselves. We hope this handbook will be of great value to pharmacists all around the world,” Mr Jordan said.