Promote the development of pharmaceutical services (PS) based on Primary Health Care (PHC), by building capacities of pharmaceutical services leaders and managers.


  • Describe the role of pharmaceutical services in primary health care and in the health delivery system.
  • Relate the influence of social determinants on the health of individuals and communities.
  • Analyse and apply the acquired knowledge to improving pharmaceutical services in each country.
  • Identify the components and management structure of the existing pharmaceutical services.
  • Formulate a plan for shifting pharmaceutical services focus from medicines to individuals, family and community (renewed PHC).
  • Recognize the competencies required for implementing PHC based pharmaceutical services.
  • Propose strategies for implementation of these competencies.
  • Design an interventional proposal for introducing renewed PHC. Specific Objectives

As part of the development of the renewal of Primary Health Care (PHC), the Medicines and Health Technologies Project of the Area of Health Systems Based on Primary Health Care (MT/HSS) of the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) has been working on a proposal for pharmaceutical services based on PHC since 2008. Despite all efforts and resources invested, access and rational use of medicines remains a major challenge in most countries of the region. It is necessary to change the approach the pharmaceutical policies and strategies, which are focused on medicines to the new vision with the emphasis on individuals, families and community (IFC) addressing their health needs. The vision of this course is to support the development of socially relevant pharmaceutical services, integrated to the health systems based on PHC. It aims to strengthen the capacity of the professionals in these services towards the new approach to support the implementation of the proposal in the countries.


  • Professionals involved in management, administration and technical activities in public sector or social security pharmaceutical services.
  • Academics in public health and pharmacy education.
  • Primary Health Care professionals in Ministry of Health.
  • Professionals involved in pharmacy service delivery and;
  • Professionals involved in pharmaceutical delivery research.


  • Having the support and conditions provided by the candidate's institution;
  • Explicit commitment from the candidate with his/her institution, their country, and with PAHO/WHO to meet the requirements and complete the course.
  • Be working in an area related to the subject and course objectives.
  • To have access to computer with Internet connection.
  • Firm commitment to ten (10) hours per week on course activities (synchronous and asynchronous) and punctual submission of assignments and required exercises.
  • As the course is interactive, not self-instructive, it requires ongoing interaction between assigned tutor and learning group.
  • Proficiency in English.

LANGUAGE: English.

ACADEMIC METHOD: With tutoring


Introduction- Familiarization Program

  • Use of the platform.
  • Being a distance-learning student.

Module 1 Social Determinants of Health and PHC

  • Social determinants of health, health systems, PHC and related aspects.
  • Pharmaceutical services based in renewed PHC and related subjects.
  • Preparation of the intervention proposal (1st part).

Module 2 Pharmaceutical Services and its Components

  • Management in the context of pharmaceutical services with a process-based approach.
  • Pharmaceutical services: development of key processes (e.g. dispensing, pharmaceutical care, education, and information) and strategic and support processes (medicines selection, patient safety, pharmacovigilance, procurement, storage, and distribution).
  • Preparation of the intervention proposal (2nd part).

Module 3 The Pharmacist in the Face of Change

  • Competencies and strategies for the development of PHC-based Pharmaceutical Services.
  • Preparation of the intervention proposal (3rd part).

Closing Module

  • Completion of the intervention proposal.

Closing date for registration: Deadline extended until May 12th 2013

Course start date:  June 6, 2013

Course Completion: October 17, 2013

Teaching weeks: 19

Expected Total Number of Seats per Country:
Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Jamaica, Haiti, Guyana, Suriname and Trinidad & Tobago; Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, St. Lucia, St Kitts and Nevis, St Vincent and Grenadines, Suriname (1 or 2). Anguilla, British Virgin Islands, Montserrat, Cayman Islands, Bermuda, Turks and Caicos Islands (1).


British Virgin Islands
Cayman Islands
Trinidad and Tobago 
Turks and Caicos Islands 

General Coordinator: Adriana Mitsue Ivama Brummell

Academic Coordinator: Vera Lucia Luiza