I just got one of the saddest news from a young pharmacist this evening. She had asked me to come and help her assess a location she had found for opening a retail pharmacy. The site was one of the best sites that I have seen in recent times. If not for business ethics, I would have been tempted to go for the location. I told her it was a wonderful site because there was no pharmacy in that vicinity. It had all a pharmacy needed to thrive in Lagos.
She said she had applied for location approval more than a month ago and PCN inspectors had not come to inspect the place. And because of her fear of paying for a place only to be told that it cannot be approved, she pleaded with the landlord to give her a few more days. This was happening more than two weeks ago meaning close to two months from the date of application.
She called me this night almost weeping. The inspectors finally came yesterday but on that same day another person had paid for the site. I just could not take it. How can PCN inspectors be the reason why the hope and aspiration of a young pharmacist are being destroyed. I have raised this issue often with the management of PCN that there is no reason why a location should not be inspected within a week. If it means for the inspection fee to be increased, let it be increased but let the inspection be done in a week. If not the final inspection let the location approval inspection be done in a week.
I know enough pharmacists who after waiting for weeks for PCN had to take a risk and pay for the site only for PCN inspectors to come weeks later and say the place can not be approved.
Now the new EXECUTIVE ORDER recently issued by the Acting President Yomi Osibanjo has now blown the door wide open for Young pharmacists.
As a young pharmacist you need to know that based on this new law, once you have waited for PCN for more than two weeks after submitting your letter, the law states that if the inspectors do not come, then that location has been approved automatically.
PCN needs to know that a lot of young pharmacist are being frustrated out of the profession by the actions of her inspectors. We cannot have a system where location inspection delay are the reason why the future of young pharmacists is been destroyed.
The registrar really needs to look into this. A few weeks ago I was with another young pharmacist who was made to pay close to a million naira of her last savings and borrowing only for PCN inspectors to come weeks later and tell her the size of the place was too small. For God’s sake why cant this inspection be done in less than a week. If it means out sourcing the inspection, let it be outsourced but young pharmacists must stop paying the price of the laxity of PCN inspectors. This just has to stop.
PCN needs to understand is that there is a rumour going round especially in Lagos that the reason for the delay is that some inspectors take the locationaddresses to go and check. If its a site that is good and the applying pharmacist has not paid for, the inspectors will get some one to go and pay for it.
Now if this is true I don’t know. All I know is that I have gotten complains from pharmacists on this and its a strong rumour among pharmacists in Lagos.