Volume 22 & 23 | No. 2 & 3 | June and September 2020

I am delighted and honoured to have the responsibility of leading this amazing organization for the next two years and would like to thank all the past Presidents, the past and present Secretariats, and the many volunteers for a robust, poised, and resilient Society. We are well positioned to move forward in a forever changed world where the use of technology in how we live, work, and learn is augmented and is the norm more than ever.

As you know, ISOPP is the world’s gateway to oncology pharmacy research and practice. This is the place you come to learn about the latest developments in oncology pharmacy, to connect with pioneers in cancer treatment, and to expand your knowledge of oncology pharmacy practice worldwide. 

It is for these reasons we offer online resources and education, advocate for improved oncology pharmacy care around the world, and engage our members in guiding and delivering the work we do.

Despite the recent pivots and adjustments, ISOPP’s work continues with new initiatives – the Biosimilars Toolkit and publication, the COVID-19 resources and webinar, and completion of the updated ISOPP Standards of Practice in draft format (which is under membership review) – and with many others in the works, such as further development of the Biosimilars Toolkit, collaboration with WHO in the development of an Essential Medicines Handbook, as well as the possible development of an Oncology Pharmacy Certificate Course, an Oncology Pharmacotherapy Certificate Program with Integration of Biosimilars into Therapeutics, and a virtual 2021 Symposium.

ISOPP’s 2021 Symposium was scheduled to take place from March 11 to 13, 2021 in Seville, Spain and is now moved to March 3 to 5, 2022. The venue remains the same in the beautiful historical Spanish city of Seville. Save the new date! We will provide updates through the website, social media, and email regarding online education in 2021, as well as further information on ISOPP 2022 as it becomes available.

Explore the About section of the website for an update on who your volunteers leaders are, and feel free to email me at president@isopp.org if you wish to participate on any of the committees, task forces, and work groups and/or to share any suggestions and ideas that you may have.

Updates and more information on all of ISOPP’s initiatives are highlighted in this edition of our Newsletter. There is, of course, the much appreciated and anticipated “Oncology Around the World” articles featuring stories of oncology pharmacy practitioners’ work experiences during COVID-19, and an invitation to register for the British Oncology Pharmacy Association’s (our 2019 Symposium partner) October 2020 virtual Symposium.

Lastly, it is important for the society to acknowledge the hardships of members and ultimately their patients due to COVID-19. As a society, we stand together to support each other through these times – something as simple as keeping in touch with friends we have made through ISOPP to participating in the webinar that was held in May. We wish to continue to support members through this time, so if there are initiatives that may be helpful for members, please email me at president@isopp.org. My thoughts are with my fellow members as we each strive to deliver the best possible care for our patients in this challenging setting. 

I look forward to hearing from you and being of service. Thank you for the privilege! Enjoy the “Oncology Around the World” articles and ISOPP business news updates.
Shaun O’Connor
ISOPP President
ISOPP Business News
ISOPP Standards of Practices: 21 New Draft Chapters for Member Review

It is with great pleasure that we, Shaun O'Connor, Alexander Chan and Kimberley-Ann Kerr, Co-Chairs of the Standards Task Force, present twenty-one reviewed draft chapters of the soon to be released updated ISOPP Standards of Practice, on behalf of the ISOPP Standards Review Task Force.

You can find the new draft chapters on the ISOPP website by following this link after logging in as a member.
Please share your comments, reflections, suggestions, concerns, tips, agreements or non-agreements with us via email at standards@isopp.org, prior to August 29, 2020.

Thank you for helping ISOPP and making the ISOPP standards the Global standard, which by the way is the most cited standard internationally. Thank you as well to the volunteers who spent the last year creating them. As ISOPP is a global organization, we are looking for global acceptance and reflection.
Update from the Advocacy Task Force

I am happy to share that things are moving forward on a number of fronts with the ISOPP Advocacy Task Force.

The COVID-19 pandemic predictably put the activities of many organizations involved in international health either on temporary hold or re-focused on more immediate health care systems/facility planning for patients with and without malignant disease. The activity of the WHO Essential Medicines List (EML) Secretariat were one of those notably affected. Now that the pandemic is (albeit far from over) slowly coming under control, some of these activities are re-initiating. ISOPP (via this Task Force) has been recently invited to participate in a number of these activities.

First, we were invited by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) to participate in a Master Course for webinar based dissemination on the importance of access to essential medicines and barriers to ensuring access. More information on this course can be found here: https://www.uicc.org/what-we-do/capacity-building/master-courses
Survey Coming Soon:
Oncology Pharmacy Service Delivery during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Expanding on our ISOPP commentary which includes perspectives from practice leaders from 28 countries globally, we look forward to inviting your participation in a forthcoming individual member survey.

This survey will aim to collate data on the way in which oncology pharmacy services were impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and how pharmacy departments respond to the pandemic to deliver care to oncology patients. Information obtained from this survey will enable reflection on strategies and decisions (successful and unsuccessful) that could help move forward the pharmacy profession in the aftermath of the pandemic.

The ISOPP Research Committee has been working with a review panel of practice leaders and general practitioners and are now in the final stages of survey development. Distribution of the survey to memberships of participating oncology pharmacy associations is scheduled for September 1, 2020. The ISOPP Research Committee would like to thank all participating review panel members for their time and efforts so far, this has truly been a global collaboration!  
Updates about the Position Statement on the Role of the Oncology Pharmacy Team
in Cancer Patient Care

ISOPP’s Credentialing, Specialization, Scope of Practice Task Force is finalizing a position statement on the “Role of the Oncology Pharmacy Team in Cancer Patient Care”. Watch your inbox to provide your comments before its publication. 

Creating this position statement aligns with ISOPP’s strategic priority to engage members around the world to advance oncology pharmacy practice and to provide information that promotes advocacy, especially for countries where the profession has not yet recognized oncology pharmacy as a specialty.
Call for members to join the
Member Engagement Task Force and/or the Immunotherapy Task Force

The Secretariat has formed two Task Forces, one to develop an ISOPP position paper on the role of the oncology pharmacist in the era of immunotherapy, and the other to propose strategies to increase member engagement and membership numbers, and to make recommendations on ways to reward active members formally.

Please email services@isopp.org by Monday, August 31, 2020 to express your interest in being part of these Task Forces. Thank you to those who have already responded.
ISOPP’s 2021 Symposium moved to 2022, same venue, different dates! 

ISOPP, El Grupo Español Para El Desarrollo de la Farmacia Oncológica (GEDEFO) and Sociedad Espanola de Farmacia Hospitalaria (SEFH) have made the decision to reschedule the XIX International Symposium on Oncology Pharmacy Practice (ISOPP 2021) to March 2022 due to the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic.

ISOPP’s 2021 Symposium was scheduled to take place March 11 - 13, 2021 in Seville, Spain and is now moved to March 3 - 5, 2022. The venue remains the same in the beautiful historical Spanish city of Seville. Save the new date! ISOPP will provide updates through the website, social media and email regarding virtual events in 2021 as well as further information on ISOPP 2022 as it becomes available.

We look forward to meeting in person again soon. In the meantime, stay safe and see you online!
Highlighted Education Resources
ISOPP Biosimilars Toolkit of Resources

The ISOPP Biosimilars Toolkit of Resources, launched by Biosimilars Task Force and Education Committee, provide tools aimed at assisting oncology pharmacy practitioners to understand and implement Biosimilars in their practice. It forms part of ISOPP’s Virtual Library and access is complimentary for members.  

The Toolkit is divided into 9 categories. Visit each category to view the relevant resources. 

ISOPP COVID-19 Resources

The situation surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic will continue to change and evolve; what will not change is our Society’s commitment to do everything we can to support our members.

ISOPP is therefore committed to collecting and sharing COVID-19 and Cancer Care resources. We are delighted to share resources which provide COVID-19 guidance from various regulators to knowledge support to pharmacists and patients for cancer care during this pandemic. 

Through our resources, we provide further support to our membership with some of the most interesting research findings and virtual interactions with experts related to the impact of COVID-19 on cancer care globally.

The resources are divided into 5 categories:
ISOPP offers new online educational opportunities specific to the needs of oncology pharmacy practitioners, and facilitated by ISOPP leaders and oncology pharmacy experts.

Did you miss the most recent webinar titled An ISOPP webinar on Global Oncology Pharmacy Response to COVID-19 Pandemic, which took place on May 13, 2020?  

Log on as a member to watch the recording on the ISOPP website. Members have complimentary access for one year from the Webinar date. 

Watch for upcoming Webinars in 2020!  

Interested in presenting a webinar? Please contact the Education Committee Chair, Himanshu Patel, at education@isopp.org
The Virtual Library serves as a hub for oncology pharmacy practitioners from around the world to access the breadth and depth of knowledge of ISOPP members and others on a 24-hour basis.

Members and non-members have access to certain resources complimentary and others through a paid subscription. 

The following will help you to explore ISOPP’s Virtual Library:

The COVID-19 Resources, Biosimilars Toolkit of Resources, recording of past Regional and International Symposia, Webinars and much more are available in the Virtual Library
The 73rd issue of the Virtual Journal Club (VJC) is available. To access it, visit the Virtual Journal Club Surveys page or follow the direct link to the survey.
Members are encouraged to read articles and then answer a series of multiple choice questions through the Virtual Journal Club Surveys.
After completing the questionnaire, a certificate will be available. Although not formally accredited for continuing medical education (CME) points, participation is equal to one hour of CME activity.
The Journal of Oncology Pharmacy Practice (JOPP) is a peer-reviewed, scholarly journal dedicated to educating health professionals about providing pharmaceutical care to patients with cancer. It is the official publication of the International Society for Oncology Pharmacy Practitioners (ISOPP).

JOPP is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) and is free for ISOPP members.

You can access JOPP issues online anytime via ISOPP website (log in as a member). Please note that a hard copy of the Journal is no longer available. 
Did you know?
You can Share the Wealth of Knowledge using ISOPP Membership Promotional Materials

Spread the word to your colleagues to join the ISOPP! You can include the “Join ISOPP Membership PowerPoint Slide” (log in as a member) in your presentation slide that you may present during an online and/or in-person Conference. 

Benefits of being member of ISOPP includes: 

  • Subscription to the Journal of Oncology Pharmacy Practice (JOPP) (8 online editions per year)
  • Access to ISOPP’s online education and resources 
  • Access to online knowledge sharing through Sosido
  • Reduced registration fees for high-quality International Symposia
  • Access to Member-only Masterclasses and Regional Symposia
  • Member rate access to the Virtual Education Resource Library

You can sponsor a member

By donating monies, fellow oncology pharmacy practitioners, who might otherwise not be able to join ISOPP, are afforded the opportunity. This year, ISOPP received 30 requests and of these requests, 13 people who care about advancing cancer care became members, thanks to the generosity of fellow members. 

If you would like to make a donation, please email ISOPP’s Society Management office at membership@isopp.org or log into your membership record to make the donation. 

If 119 members make a donation of $20 CAD, we will reach our target amount of $2,378.25 CAD so that the remaining 17 requests can be supported and the new members can be welcomed into the ISOPP community
You can be part of the Members’ Discussion Forum
The Discussion Forum is an online discussion about oncology pharmacy with ISOPP members around the world. The forum is an active conversation amongst members, committee members and Secretariat members on oncology pharmacy related issues and ISOPP specific issues.
Post questions and provide answers using the discussion forum. Take advantage of the networking opportunities with ISOPP members by starting a discussion around leading edge oncology knowledge and best practices!
Visit How to Use the Website for directions on how to start a new topic and how to subscribe. 
You can Follow us on ISOPP’s LinkedIn Page 
ISOPP is the world’s gateway to oncology pharmacy research and practice. This is the place you come to learn about the latest developments in oncology pharmacy, to connect with pioneers in cancer treatment, and to expand your knowledge of oncology pharmacy practice worldwide.
ISOPP’s public page on LinkedIn is now available to the public! Follow us to stay informed of upcoming ISOPP activities and conversations. 
Share our posts with your network and encourage others to join ISOPP!
There is also an ISOPP Group page in LinkedIn if you would like to connect and share your ideas and best practices with other Oncology Pharmacy practitioners! 
Quarterly Newsletter Author
Would you like to contribute articles to be published in the ISOPP Newsletter?
We would love to hear about conferences (virtual or in person) you may have attended, a ‘Day in the life of a <name country> oncology pharmacist’ during the COVID19 outbreak or anything else you would like to share with ISOPP members in oncology pharmacy and your practice.
ISOPP’s Newsletter, published quarterly and sent via email directly to members, is the home of international discussion on oncology pharmacy research and practice and ISOPP news and business. We are always looking for contributions.  
Contact Evelyn Handel, Newsletter Editor at newsletter@isopp.org to submit an article.  
Evelyn Handel
Newsletter Editor
Are you or your national organization looking for a way to reach ISOPP members for a research study, to share information or other related oncology pharmacy matters?
There are several ways to reach ISOPP members:
ISOPP will distribute your survey, if it meets set criteria. This service is free if the principal investigator or co-investigator is an ISOPP member, and is available to non-members for a fee of $750 CAD.
Many ISOPP members are part of healthcare teams involved in cancer prevention, treatment, supportive care, and symptom management. If you would like to reach them to share information about a job posting, a product launch, a conference or other related oncology pharmacy matters, ISOPP will distribute an email on your behalf and post the information to the ISOPP website. Check out the cost for a one-time email distribution!
Visit the ISOPP Website for more information on how to reach our members.
Oncology Pharmacy Around the World
Working from Home During the COVID-19 Pandemic
By Lynne Nakashima, BC Cancer, Canada
The COVID-19 pandemic changed the entire world in just a short time. The impacts have been enormous and far reaching! For the world of Pharmacy, it thrust us into the spotlight, as front-line workers, both in retail and hospital sectors where most of the Pharmacists, Pharmacy Technicians and Assistants work in front line positions, caring for patients. These are the staff that are featured in the news and on television.

A Day in the life of a Nigeria Oncology Pharmacist during the COVID 19 Outbreak
By Clara Adesola, National Hospital, Abuja, Nigeria

It was the morning of Tuesday, March 31, 2020, I woke up to prepare for work as usual. I got ready and set out in my car at about 7:30am to arrive the hospital within the usual 20minutes drive. I live in a satellite town, outskirt of the capital city of Nigeria (Abuja). I had barely driven for five minutes when I met a military check point with many vehicles in a long queue, taking turns to be cleared, before continuing their journey. More than half of the vehicles were sent back. As I approached the check point, there were fierce looking police and military officers and some public health workers in white gowns, checking passengers' temperature and ensuring they wore face masks.

Caring For Caregiver 2.0: Improving access to PPEs
By Asomaniwaa Owusu-Ansah, Erith Pharmaceuticals and Health Services Ltd, Accra, Ghana

Since 2016, Erith Health Services has distributed safety equipment to cancer centers; equipment that are intended to provide personal protection to health professionals who handle chemotherapy medicines to significantly minimize risks associated with exposure. Our core solution: to improve cancer treatment outcomes by improving the conditions under which health workers prepare, administer and dispose off chemotherapy. 

We started off by offering training programs that sought to: 

  1. Make available up-to-date information to hospital administrators on the need to provide personal protective equipment for oncology staff.
  2. Provide up-to-date information on the right protective equipment to employ in chemotherapy preparation for oncology healthcare teams.

Through our Caring For Caregivers initiative, we have offered training sessions to administrators and healthcare team on safe practices in the oncology setting. We set up a specialty distribution unit to market and distribute personal protective equipment for oncology practice in our country.

2020 BOPA Virtual Symposium
on October 9 – 11, 2020

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the British Oncology Pharmacy Association (BOPA) conference for 2020 will be virtual.  

Please click here for more information or visit http://www.bopa.org.uk/latest-symposium/

The BOPA 2020 conference will offer you a full virtual experience and the opportunity to take part in every aspect of the programme including:

  • Access to all presentations and session recordings
  • Visit the virtual exhibition hall
  • Network with colleagues
  • Access all the e-posters
  • Join in live discussions 
  • Give feedback

BOPA look forward to inviting you back to their conference for 2020 – this time from the comfort of your own home but with the same high standard of presentations! 

ISOPP's Society and Symposium Management Office

Sea to Sky Meeting and Association Management is ISOPP's Society and Symposium Management Office. If you have any questions about membership, services, Symposium or the Society, please contact the ISOPP Office directly as follows:

Direct: +1-604-984-6448
Suite 206, 201 Bewicke Avenue 
North Vancouver, BC Canada V7M 3M7