International Exchange Program 2019
From August 13th to the 27th, the fourth annual Clinical Study Abroad program to the University of Portsmouth (UoP) was held. From this year, students who participated in the Nihon University, School of Pharmacy (NUSP) study abroad program were able to earn a 1-unit credit in the Career Design II course after being evaluated based on their studies pre-, during, and post-visit to UoP. This year, 19 students participated in the program ranging from 3rd- to 5th-year students. While in the UK, the NUSP students were able to learn about pharmacy and pharmacy education in lectures given in the morning and then visited various sites in the afternoon to see how pharmacy care in the UK was actually practiced. Furthermore, the NUSP students also had the privilege to visit the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) in London and its museum as well as learn about the experience of a Japanese pharmacist and educator in the UK from Dr. Naoko Arakawa of Nottingham University.
In the first week of the study abroad program, the NUSP students also got to learn about British culture, customs, history, and both Portsmouth and the University of Portsmouth. This also included meeting the mayor of Portsmouth for a memorable photo opportunity. As the UoP students were often with the NUSP students, this allowed for the students to use their English skills in real communication settings.
On the weekend, the NUSP students were able to venture on their own and go sightseeing in London and other places to refresh themselves before their second week of studies which included lectures on the roles of the UK pharmacist, measuring blood pressure, BMI, etc… for physical exams, calculating the risk of cardiovascular disease in patients, and undergoing training in physical assessment at the clinical training facilities of UoP. The NUSP students also had training in a scenario where the renal function of an emergency room patient had to be checked without the help of blood test results or any other nursing or medical staff.
NUSP students also visited pharmacists in community pharmacy and hospital settings. The students not only learned about the differences between a pharmacist and a pharmacy technician, but also learned how a pharmacist in the UK could counsel and prescribe a medicine to a patient – something pharmacists in Japan are currently unable to do. Other differences from Japan included pharmacists in the UK giving vaccinations and selling all sorts of medicines.
With the clinical study abroad program finished, the NUSP students visited the RPS and further learned about the continuing education program of pharmacists in the UK. In addition to this, the students were able to hear the frank opinions and learn from the personal experience of Dr. Naoko Arakawa, a former hospital pharmacist in Japan, about studying to become a pharmacist in the UK. It was a very enlightening discussion for the students. We at NUSP truly look forward to the future careers of the students who participated in this year’s clinical study abroad program.