Speech by Mr Gan Kim Yong, Minister for Health, at the Singapore Pharmacy Council Pharmacist’s Pledge Affirmation Ceremony, 6 May 2015

Mr Wu Tuck Seng, President, Singapore Pharmacy Council,

Distinguished Members of the Council,

Newly Registered Pharmacists and Guests,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Good evening.  

1.             It gives me great pleasure to join you this evening at the 2015 Singapore Pharmacy Council’s Pledge Affirmation Ceremony. First, my heartiest congratulations to all the newly registered pharmacists. All of you will become part of our healthcare family.

2.             Today, you will be reciting the Pledge in the presence of your colleagues and family members, who are here to celebrate this achievement and important milestone in your life. For many of you, this marks the transition into your new career as a pharmacist as you begin a meaningful and fulfilling career in healthcare. The pharmacist pledge will seal the commitment of your professional responsibilities towards your patients and to the development of the pharmacy profession.

3.             This year also marks 50 years of independence for our nation. SG50 is about celebrating the enduring values that we share as Singaporeans: values that undergird the Singapore Spirit, values that have stood us in good stead in the past and give us confidence for an even brighter future. To all Singaporeans, I hope the same spirit will inspire you and drive you to achieve greater excellence in your profession. 

Improving Quality of Care and Achieving Better Patient Outcomes

4.             Our healthcare system has evolved with the changing needs of the population. The combined impact of a growing and ageing population has contributed to the increased demand for quality healthcare services by Singaporeans. The “Healthcare 2020 Master Plan” serves as our roadmap towards increasing accessibility, improving quality and enhancing affordability of healthcare for all Singaporeans. As we ramp up capacity across the different healthcare sectors to address the needs of our population, quality of care will remain a key focus to achieving better patient outcomes and better health.  To deliver quality healthcare, we need to train and nurture dedicated healthcare professionals. We will need good preceptors to mentor pharmacy graduates and serve as role models. I am pleased to note that SPC will be recognising a deserving preceptor with the SPC Excellent Preceptor Award 2014 tonight.       

5.             And even as we transform our model of care, by providing more healthcare services within the community, we will need skilled healthcare professionals in our new healthcare facilities and in the community. The role of pharmacists will need to be expanded in the hospitals, polyclinics, and in the community setting. Community pharmacists have to work with medical practitioners and other healthcare providers to care for patients with chronic diseases, optimising medication therapy management and achieving good patient care outcomes.

The Revised Code of Ethics 2015

6.             I understand that SPC has been working on its Code of Ethics as part of their continual review process. The Code represents the fundamental tenets of conduct and behaviour for pharmacists practising in Singapore, and provides a guide on the expected standards in the discharge of their professional duties and responsibilities.  A new section dealing with Ethical Code on Advertising by Pharmacists has been added to the previous edition in 2009. This new segment sets out guidance on advertisement/advertising that are permitted and not permitted by pharmacists. The SPC’s Code of Ethics 2015 will be launched tonight. I applaud SPC for continually updating the Code to uphold the highest professional values and I encourage all pharmacists, including our newly registered pharmacists, to abide by the Code of Ethics.


7.             To the newly registered pharmacists, the solemn promise you make tonight signifies a lifelong commitment to your patients. You must uphold the trust and confidence placed upon you by your patients as you embark on your profession. I look forward to your contributions to help bring the profession to an even higher level.  

8.             Thank you for joining us on this healthcare journey and welcome to the family. Let’s work together to strengthen our healthcare system and to better serve the needs of our people.


9.             Let me end by conveying my warmest congratulations to our newly registered pharmacists. Your road ahead will be an exciting and fulfilling one. I wish all of you a successful and rewarding career!

Thank you.

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