The IMU Master of Pharmacy Practice (MPP) programme continues to provide opportunities for pharmacists to address their ongoing educational and training needs, expanding and developing their skill sets and their marketability. The MPP Programme is unique in three ways: It is the first of its kind to be offered by a Malaysian university; students can choose major streams in Clinical Pharmacy, Social & Administrative Pharmacy, or Pharmacy Management; and the programme is offered in blended mode, with full and part time options. The programme is thus perfect for pharmacists looking to create an impact on their professional practice and take the next step in their careers – whilst continuing to work. H’ng Ting Kian, a student in the inaugural (2017) intake, is a clinical pharmacist who graduated from the University of Strathclyde in 2013, and returned to Malaysia to undertake registration training and mandatory Government service as a pharmacist. She has experience in running a Diabetes Mellitus Medication Therapy Adherence Clinic and is currently a clinical pharmacist at a Ministry of Health primary care clinic. After more than 3 years in practice, she decided to undertake formal Masters study. She automatically thought of IMU as she had undertaken the first 2 years of her first degree with the University and is familiar with its environment and standards. Ting Kian, who is from Penang, wishes to develop her knowledge of pharmacy management, and has therefore selected the Pharmacy Management stream. The blended learning mode and flexible schedule allow her to effectively combine work and study.
“The MPP programme widens my scope of practice. The weekend sessions of face to face classes give me a flexibility to plan my regular duties at my workplace. The classes with specialists from the industry really help me to get a better idea of what is going on in the industry currently. Apart from learning pharmacy management, I am also learning time and people management. Each student in our cohort brings unique strengths, interests, and experiences to our collaborative learning environment.”
Yogeshini, an IMU alumna from Johor, completed her Bachelor of Pharmacy (BPharm) in 2015. As a BPharm student, she learned clinical pharmacy and gained generic pharmacy practice skills, and she feels that the BPharm prepared her well for real world pharmacy. After her Provisionally Registered Pharmacist training year in community pharmacy, she continued working as a community pharmacist. She is motivated by interacting with clients and patients and being empowered to counsel on medication use and lifestyle change. She chose the MPP programme chiefly for its pharmacy management stream. This stream discusses key principles and strategies in pharmaceutical marketing; information systems and operational management; and the management of healthcare organisations. The goal is to provide a conceptual basis for developing leadership and management traits, including the ability to make well-informed decisions in the context of leading and managing services.
“I enjoy the blended learning in MPP as it allows me to study while doing my job. This allows me to transfer my learning to the workplace, so learning is very much relevant. I am able to attend the classes from Johor as most of the sessions are offered online. I also enjoy my travel to KL whenever I have a face to face sessions. Overall, these sessions are a great opportunity to meet course-mates and interact with them. The face-to-face sessions make the online discussion more meaningful. It’s heartening to learn with a group of people who are also balancing work, study and home.”
The Master of Pharmacy Practice programme offers opportunities to extend useful knowledge and develop useful skills that can be immediately applied to practice. The programme can be undertaken while continuing to work, or full time.