What is FIP?

If you would like an application form for membership of FIP then e-mail Pauline O'Brien at P.O'Brien@fip.nl. If you would like more information or a registration form for one of our conferences or congresses then e-mail Mirielle Swakhoven at M.Swakhoven@fip.nl. Please use FIP Membership or FIP Congress as the subject of your message and include your full postal address so that we can send you the documents by mail.

These pages about FIP are provided as part of PharmWeb at the Department of Pharmacy, University of Manchester. FIP gratefully acknowledges the support of Dr. Tony DEmanuele in developing these pages.

*What is FIP?
*What is its mission?
*Who are its members?
*FIP Sections
*What is the structure of FIP?
*What does FIP do?
*Does FIP do anything for developing countries?
*What else does FIP do to foster education and research ?
*Home Page

What is FIP?

The Fedration Internationale Pharmaceutique, or the International Pharmaceutical Federation as it is better known today, was founded in The Hague, The Netherlands in 1912 with the help of the Dutch government. It still has its headquarters in The Hague.

It was founded to bring together pharmacists from all over the world so that they could learn from each other and thus advance the profession of pharmacy. Today individual membership is not restricted only to pharmacists (although they do make up the majority of individual members) and an increasing number of pharmaceutical scientists have joined in recent years.

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What is its mission?

FIP's mission is "to represent and serve pharmacy and pharmaceutical sciences world-wide". FIP sees its principle role as one of education in and development of the practice and science of pharmacy.

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Who are its members?

The membership of FIP falls into a number of categories. It has Ordinary Members which are national organisations representing pharmacists and pharmaceutical scientists. It currently has over 80 such organisations which, in turn, represent over 250,000 pharmacists or pharmaceutical scientists around the world. Ordinary Members come from 59 countries ranging from the highly developed, such as those found in Western Europe or America, to the developing such as Eritrea or Bangladesh. This makes FIP the largest and most representative international organisation in its field.

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FIP Sections

FIP also has 4,500 individual members from around 90 countries in six of the seven continents (we have no members in Antarctica - yet!).

FIP has ten Sections covering the main areas of:

Community Pharmacy, Academic Pharmacy, Industrial Pharmacy, Hospital Pharmacy, Administrative Pharmacy, Military Pharmacy, Pharmacy Information, together with Sections covering the areas of Medicinal Plants, Clinical Biology, and Official Laboratories

These Sections are part of the Board of Pharmaceutical Practice and operate within the overall goals of FIP.

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What is the structure of FIP?

FIP's controlling body is its Council. It comprises of a representative of each of the Ordinary Members, a representative of each of the FIP Sections, a representative of both Boards (see below), members of the Bureau (FIP's "Board of Directors") and FIP's Honorary Presidents. The Council meets once a year, just before the annual Congress. Also invited to attend and participate in the Council meeting are representatives of other international organisations, such as WHO.

The Council elect a Bureau which implements the decisions of the Council and other tasks set out in the Statutes of FIP. The President of FIP, Dr. D. Steinbach is from Germany. Currently the Bureau consists of eight Vice Presidents from France, Norway, Japan, Canada, Great Britain, Hungary and the USA.

Other members of the Bureau are the Chairman of the Board of Pharmaceutical Sciences who is from Canada and the Scientific Secretary (who is Secretary of the Board) who is from The Netherlands. The Chairman of the Board of Pharmaceutical Practice is from Denmark. He is currently also the Professional Secretary, although this should change in the Spring of 1995. FIP actively tries to make the Bureau geographically representative.

The two ex-officio members of the Bureau are the immediate Past President, who is from Sweden, and the General Secretary who is from The Netherlands and is head of the permanent staff of FIP.

The day to day co-ordination of FIP's activities is the responsibility of the Executive Committee. This is composed of the President and the General, Scientific and Professional Secretaries. The Executive Committee meet, on average, once per month.

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What does FIP do?

FIP's mission is to represent and serve pharmacy and pharmaceutical sciences world-wide.

If therefore has two main functions, representation and service. In its first role it has non governmental organisation (NGO) status with WHO and the other agencies of the United Nations. It is actively involved through committees and meetings in helping to develop the role of pharmacists in the health care system and in particular the rational use of drugs. Pharmacists, because of their education and training, have the knowledge and skills required to ensure the quality of pharmaceutical products from manufacture to end user. Indeed pharmacists and pharmaceutical scientists are at the forefront of research into the next generation of pharmaceuticals.

It is its role of service that FIP is perhaps better known. The problems of pharmacy are basically the same around the world. FIP has, for many years, sought to provide a platform for people, whether or not they are pharmacists, to come together to exchange ideas and views and to learn from each other.

FIP organises a Congress each year. In 1993 it was attended by around 2,800 participants. This makes it the largest international pharmaceutical congress in the World. In 1994 the Congress was held in Lisbon and was also very successful. During the Congress the programme is designed to be a mixture of both scientific and practice related lectures and symposia. In addition each Section organises a two day education programme relevant to its own needs.

The activities of the Sections continue to expand. In 1993, for the first time, the Community Pharmacy Section organised a Continuing Education Course. Whilst the lectures were in English with simultaneous translation wherever possible, the workshops were organised along language lines so that individuals for whom the English language was a problem could participate fully. It is a tribute to the Section that the participants were amongst the last to leave the venue on the last day of the Congress. In 1994 it celebrated equal success.

The social side of such a Congress is not forgotten since this is seen as an important part of the education progress. Many lifelong friendships have started in this way and learning is not restricted just to the lecture theatre or workshop.

Because many of the world's leaders in the pharmaceutical profession are members of FIP and come to the annual Congress, the venue is an ideal focus for other, pharmacy related activities. FIP was very pleased in 1993 to be associated with a WHO sponsored meeting on "the role of the pharmacist" which was held in Tokyo immediately before the 1993 FIP Congress. By providing secretarial and other support FIP felt that it was helping WHO in this important task. FIP was also involved in the previous WHO meeting in New Delhi in 1988.

Annual Congresses are not FIP's only activity. Each year it holds a number of conferences, usually in conjunction with other organisations, which are smaller and more specialised than the annual Congress.

In 1992 a very successful conference - called Bio International '92 - was organised in conjunction with the Food and Drugs Administration of America and the health Protection Branch of Canada. This conference looked at the problems associated with bio-availability and questions associated with ensuring that different brands of the same active drug had similar effects on the patient. As medicines become more active these problems become more important. A second conference - Bio International '94 took place in June 1994 and was it too was a success.

In 1993, in association with National Association of Boards of Pharmacy of America, FIP organised the 1st International Conference on Pharmaceutical Competence in Amsterdam. At the very centre of FIP's philosophy is the belief that the most important factor in patient care is the patient. Pharmaceutical care is currently the most important aspect of patient care but patient care can only be achieved by a well trained and competent pharmacist. The conference discussed various methods of assessing competence and how it might be possible to ensure world-wide standards of pharmaceutical competence.

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What else does FIP do?

The Academic Section of FIP, several years ago, foresaw the need for a world directory of pharmacy schools. With help of its members this was published in the summer of 1993. An update of this list is expected in 1995 and will be published in conjunction with IPSF.

FIP also produces guidelines and statements on a wide range of pharmaceutical issues. In 1993 FIP published the Guidelines on Good Pharmaceutical Practice. These guidelines, which like all the other documents are available without charge from FIP, seeks to provide a framework within which pharmacists and their governments can develop their own standards of pharmaceutical practice. As with many other activities, FIP do not seek to impose its standards on individuals but provide the basic building blocks for national activities.

Also issued in 1993 were guidelines for the production of large volume parenteral fluids in hospital in developing countries and a statement on the quality of pharmaceutical products.

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Does FIP do anything for developing countries?

Emphatically yes. In 1993, 1994 and again in 1995, FIP will sponsor a series of development grants the recipients of which must be nationals of and live in a developing country. In 1993 FIP provided sponsorship for a young Peruvian pharmacist to continue his research into high altitude sickness at a University in Spain, a Nigerian pharmacist to study the effectiveness of the hospital pharmacy department in a UN sponsored "baby friendly hospital" initiative, a Bangladeshi pharmacist to study hospital pharmacy in neighbouring countries and then to help establish hospital pharmacy in his own country. In total FIP will set aside 10,000 guilders for these development grants. FIP has also offered sponsorship of a regional pharmaceutical conference for the Indian subcontinent. This will be organised by the Pharmaceutical Society of Bangladesh.

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What else does FIP do to foster education and research?

In 1993 FIP set aside a fund of over 500,000 guilders for its new FIP Foundation for Education and Research. This money, and that raised by sponsorship, will be used for a programme of Awards, Travel Scholarships and Fellowships. The programme is still developing, but it is thought that more than 100,000 guilders was used to support this programme in 1994. Some money was allocated, even before the programme has been officially launched. The Foundation sponsored a Nigerian pharmacist on an educational trip to America where he learnt about hospital pharmacy. Since the pharmacist is a university lecturer in a school of pharmacy in Nigeria, it is anticipated that the trip will also benefit his students in years to come. Finally the Foundation awarded an International Travel Scholarship to a pharmacist in Zimbabwe so that he could study malaria resistance in sub-Sahara Africa. With travel and tourism increasing in the areas it is important that accurate and up to date information should be available.

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FIP is more than 80 years old. As an organisation it has taken on new activities in the past few years and has begun to grow in size. It's membership has increased over 5% in 1993 and about the same in 1994 and shows all the signs of continued growth.

Its activities are designed to improve the long-term effectiveness of patient care. It has actively worked towards the WHO goal of health for all, and intends to continue to do so.

Do you want to become involved with the world of pharmacy and pharmaceutical sciences? Do you want to find out more about FIP? Then contact:

International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP)

Membership & Finance

Andries Bickerweg 5

2517 JP The Hague

The Netherlands

Tel.: +31 70 302 1976

Fax.: +31 70 363 3914

E-mail: Pauline@fip.nl

If you would like an application form for membership of FIP then e-mail Pauline O'Brien at P.O'Brien@fip.nl. If you would like more information or a registration form for one of our conferences or congresses then e-mail Mirielle Swakhoven at M.Swakhoven@fip.nl. Please use FIP Membership or FIP Congress as the subject of your message and include your full postal address so that we can send you the documents by mail.

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