The Jamaica Pharmacists’ Association was originally established with fifteen members and in 1944 the name was changed to the Pharmaceutical Society of Jamaica (PSJ).
The Articles of Association of the PSJ were entered in July 1948. A Code of Ethics, as well as a Constitution, with the aims and objectives of the Society was prepared from those early days. The mission of the association is to maintain the dignity of the profession by promoting high standards of conduct in all aspects of professional practice. The Society encourages a spirit of goodwill and cooperation among members of the profession and permits the involvement of pharmacists at all levels.
The organization has been served by a succession of dedicated and committed presidents and through the years its members have worked assiduously in many areas:
- It spearheaded the establishment of a School of Pharmacy at the College of Arts, Science and Technology, (now the University of Technology) in 1961. This brought to an end the former apprenticeship system.
- The Society established regional and international links, being admitted into the membership of similar organizations in Great Britain and other Commonwealth countries, the Caribbean and Latin America. The PSJ is also affiliated to the Professional Societies Association of Jamaica, the Diabetes Association of Jamaica and the Jamaica Chamber of Commerce.
- The PSJ negotiated through two political administrations, to ensure that pharmacists had large representation on the Pharmacy Council, formed in 1974, and which replaced the Drugs and Poisons Control Board.
- It staged conventions during the 1960s and 1970s and put on Continuing Education Seminars, which are still held. The annual National Retreat, which began in 1990, has now become a focus point for pharmacists, as well as others in the industry. Of mention is the 8th Commonwealth Pharmaceutical Association (CPA) conference held at the Renaissance, Jamaica Grande Resort in August 2003 where the PSJ hosted 653 delegates from 44 countries.
- The Society established a National Pharmacy Week Programme which brings to the public attention aspects of the pharmacy profession. It also allows pharmacists to educate the public on proper use of drugs.
- It produced the Pharmacists’ Pledge.
The Society seeks to inform and educate its members by hosting Continuing Education Seminars and our Annual Retreat held in June of each year. We also address issues of national importance as it relates to pharmaceuticals and the National Health Care Delivery Plan of the Government. Outreach activities include health fairs, visits to Children Homes and career talks in schools.
The Pharmaceutical Society of Jamaica has had significant history and a proud record of achievement with excellent prospects for future accomplishments.