Toronto Pharmacist Named 2016 Voice of Pharmacy Award Winner by the Ontario Pharmacists Association

Toronto, ON (May, 2016) – Toronto pharmacist John Papastergiou has been named the 2016 Voice of Pharmacy Award winner by the Ontario Pharmacists Association (OPA). The award will be presented on Saturday, June 11, as part of the Association’s annual conference in Toronto.

“We are very pleased to present John Papastergiou with this year’s Voice of Pharmacy Award,” says Dennis Darby, OPA’s CEO. “His passion for the profession and his commitment to promoting the pharmacist’s role in health care has had an important impact on how patients and other stakeholders view pharmacy today.”

For Papastergiou, communication skills are one key to the success of any pharmacist.

“Whether it’s speaking with a patient, providing consultation to a physician, or discussing an issue with another healthcare colleague, pharmacists are required to effectively communicate on a daily basis,” he says. “Strong communication skills are essential in identifying patient needs, developing solutions, and ensuring patient understanding.”

They are also essential in helping to promote the value and role of the pharmacy profession. Since 2013, Papastergiou has been a featured guest on Zoomer Radio AM740, where he discusses health and wellness issues with callers – highlighting the role pharmacists can play in supporting a variety of health concerns. He has also become a resource for local and national media outlets on pharmacy-related topics including medication management, product shortages, point of care screening, flu shots, and more.

Papastergiou, an Associate/Owner of two Shoppers Drug Mart locations in Toronto, is also a strong advocate for innovative pharmacy practice and the value of pharmacy among his peers and other industry stakeholders. He is an in-demand speaker at local, national and international events on topics like implementing professional services into community practice and expanding the role of community pharmacists. He is also a representative on committees with OPA, the Ontario College of Pharmacists, the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, the University of Toronto, University of Waterloo, and the Ontario Pharmacist Research Collaboration (OPEN). Most recently, he was appointed as the Canadian delegate to an international committee of pharmacists examining the enhanced role of the pharmacist in anticoagulation management.

“The OPA Voice of the Profession Award is particularly special because it represents the work that I have done advocating and promoting on behalf of the profession,” says Papastergiou. “My hope is that this work has had a least some impact on the practice change that has occurred over the last few years.”

In 2012, Papastergiou was named the Shoppers Drug Mart Associate of the Year. In 2014, he received the OPA Mentorship Award and was named Canadian Pharmacist of the Year by the Canadian Pharmacists Association.

About The Ontario Pharmacists Association

The Ontario Pharmacists Association is committed to evolving the pharmacy profession, and advocating for excellence in practice and patient care. As Canada’s largest advocacy organization, and continuing education and drug information provider for pharmacists, the Association represents pharmacy professionals across Ontario. By leveraging the unique expertise of pharmacy professionals, enabling them to practice to their fullest potential, and making them more accessible to patients, OPA is working to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the healthcare system.

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