All Pharmacists in Nigeria.

All CPAN Members in Nigeria & Diaspora.



1)     Be professionally/ modestly/corporately or attractively dressed at all times.

A suit and a tie is highly recommended  for all males, while a sparkling white well ironed work coat with pharmacy logo is acceptable for both sexes.

2)     Address all your professional Colleagues (including junior colleagues) with their titles (eg. Pharm, Prof., Dr, etc) at all times, and not just their names alone.

When writing your name, endeavor to reflect the Profession against your name.

Examples include;

Pharm  ABC , Dr XYZ PharmD , Prof UVW FNAPharm etc .

You may also write Clinical Pharmacist in bracket when the situation is desirable for that.

3)     When Consulting with patients in a community Pharmacy, or at the patient's Bedside in a hospital ward, emergency departments, nursing home, Managed Care clinics, Physician's offices etc, please always remember that Patient Assessment ought to Precede all forms of treatment, recommendations or interventions.

Always adhere to utilizing the tools such as SOAP or FARM, and Never fail to document the care process.

If it is not documented, it is not done.

In all situations, avoid rushing to recommend treatment options or interventions without first conducting proper patient assessment, clerking or client interviews and documenting.

It is highly unprofessional and not expected of anyone that is a clinical pharmacist to do any form of therapeutic intervention without prior proper assessment of patients or clients.

4)     Always be compliant with the CPAN Standards for Use of language by her members.

Never refer to a pharmacy as a Retail Pharmacy.

Rather say a Community Pharmacy.

Avoid being analog all the time

Don't say you will go to the Market to buy drugs.

Say you will contact or go to Medical Reps, distributors or Pharmaceutical manufacturing companies to Order drugs.

It is unethical to Order drugs from open markets as all medicines are potential poisons and must not be viewed as ordinary articles of trade.

5)     As a community pharmacist, when any client or patient compliments you by saying "How Market or Business?

Please, never⁷ fail to correct them by saying it should be How is the Practice?

And as a clinical pharmacist, please Never say my Business when referring to your Community Pharmacy activities.

It should be ....My Practice....

A Pharmacist is a professional who practices his Profession.

A trader doesn't Practice but does business or sells, or retails just for profit.

6)     Talk corporately and professionally whenever in public view.

Stop referring to a pharmacy as Shop or even Pharmacy shop, Pharmaceutical Store,   etc.

Always say my Pharmacy or Pharmacie.

Also remember that the word Premises is not Synonymous with pharmacy or pharmacie, and can be used even for a mechanic workshop, banking, hospital, Clinic or carpentar's workshop premises.

So learn to say Pharmacy or Pharmacie instead of Premises.

7)     Don't say Customers at the pharmacy.

Say Clients or Patients   at the pharmacy.

A Pharmacist or healthcare professional has clients or patients and empathizes with them, whereas a business person has customers and views them with profit in his mind.

Don't Say we Sell Medicines, say we Dispense Medicines.

Dispensing and application of Pharmaceutical care are professional skills that require university education at a pharmacy school.

Selling does Not necessarily require professionalism or university education and can be carried out very well by anyone including quacks.

Pharmacists remain high profile Professionals with university education and they Practice Pharmacy,   rather than trading or selling medicines.

If you work in the hospital or clinic, please don't use or make sign posts bearing such trading jargons like

"Buy your drugs from the hospital Pharmacy Shop or Store".

You should rather say,

Obtain or Procure   your medicines (or Fill your Prescriptions)   from the hospital Pharmacy or Pharmacie.

Don't say that you want to Cost drugs,

Say that you want to do Prescription Assessment, Review or Audit.

Don't allow too many stickers to litter "see through" or sliding glass Pharmacy doors.

Infact, write Post no Bill on the Pharmacy glass doors or Pharmacy departmental walls.

8)     Avoid creating or reinforcing wrong Perceptions in the minds of the public by using such phrases   like.

"Doctors & Pharmacists"

or Doctors, Nurses and Pharmacists", when you are speaking to the public or anyone.

Rather, use consistently such phrases as

Pharmacists, Physicians and Nurses.

The pharmacist should come before others whenever a Pharmacist is speaking, that is an honor to one's Profession.

Furthermore, learn to use Physicians or Medical doctors when referring to the twin professionals of Pharmacy who are graduates of medicine.

This is because there are different kinds of doctors in Patient Care such as dental doctors, veterinary doctors, medical doctors, Pharmacy doctors, doctors of optometry, doctors of nursing practice, etc.

The title doctor is never an occupational title solely or exclusively for any healthcare Profession.

When you say doctors but you actually mean Physicians, you have basically excluded optometry doctors, dental doctors, pharmacy doctors, veterinary doctors etc from also being doctors whereas all possess clinical doctorates which are about direct patient care.

It is archaic and obsolete to tag only Physicians as doctors within the health care system.

The general public are always watching the way you say or do things & they create their perceptions of your profession.

9)     Also, Don't use such phrases as:

Doctors and other health care Workers.

Learn to say Physicians and Non Physician Healthcare Providers, whenever you want to talk about Physicians and others that are Healthcare providers.

Except you mean all “Clinician Doctors” (dentists, optometrists, DPTs, MDs,  PharmDs etc)  and all  ordinary healthcare staff who are not medical professionals or Clinical  staff (eg cleaners, accounting and administrative  staff etc).

It is then you can address them as doctors and other health care workers.

Other Clinical Professionals aside medical doctors are alternatively addressed as Non Physician Health Care Providers.

10)    If you are a PharmD holder, PhD or Prof, and your annual licence does not reflect that, please write to PCN officially either directly or through your DPS, so that your title can be reflected wherever your name is written by the council.

And always be proud of your title (Pharm, Prof, Dr etc) as a pharmacist because you earned it meritoriously.

N.B. These little things matter & and it is absolutely necessary to put many things in the right perspective.



Dr Moteehat Bukkie Olu-Lawal FPCPharm, MCPAN, PharmD.

National Secretary.

Dr Joseph Madu FPCPharm, MCPAN, PharmD.

National Chairman.


  1. 👍🏼👍🏼👍🏼
    I love this.
    Thanks for sharing.
    And a big Thank you to CPAN to for taking the time to compile and publish the SOPs

  2. Quite on target. Kudos to the team for this. Thanks to all. The sky is the starting point of excellence.

  3. Standards makes a practice
    Thank you CPAN for reinventing wheels of a noble profession from the strongest POSITIVES.

  4. I absolutely love this piece. Well captured. Thank you so so much.
    I feel our academics have a great role to play in inculcating these standards in pharmacy students. Role play / dramatisation can help in reinforcing it during lectures. Same too with those who serve as preceptors to these students during IT and Internship.
    I am currently playing my part in this area in my institution. I teach my students (Pharmacy Technicians) the right term ‘physician’ / ‘medical doctor’ and emphasize that they put their profession first before others. They know I don’t joke about it.

    The way the Physicians carry themselves is a function of the training they got in school.

    For those of us in practice, timely reminders like this will help reinforce this standard.

    Thank you once again able committee chairman and members. Long live CPAN!!!

  5. This document is well written and a true reflection of our desire as Clinical Pharmacists. This is indeed a great work.

  6. Thanks a lot. It’s wonderful beautiful piece. More grease to your elbows as you lift the pharmacy banner higher and higher.

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