Senior lecturer in Pharmaceutical Sciences, Mr Andy Gray received the Joseph A Oddis Award for exceptional services to the International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) at the opening ceremony of the 79th World Congress of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences in Abu Dhabi, UAE.
The FIP represents more than four million pharmacists around the world. Its vision is a world where everyone benefits from access to safe, effective, quality and affordable medicines and pharmaceutical care.
Gray is a pharmacist whose research interests include policy analysis (particularly the development and implementation of national medicines policies), rational medicines use and the application of antiretroviral therapy in resource-constrained settings.
UKZN’s Discipline of Pharmaceutical Sciences is a designated World Health Organization Collaborating Centre on Pharmaceutical Policy and Evidence Based Practice. Gray is also an Honorary Senior Scientist: Consultant Pharmacist for the Centre for the AIDS Programme of Research in South Africa (CAPRISA) and non-executive Director of JEMBI Health Systems, a not-for-profit company focused on developing computer/IT-based healthcare solutions for the developing world.
He is a Visiting Fellow in the Faculty of Pharmacy, Rhodes University; a Fellow and Honorary Life Member of the Pharmaceutical Society of South Africa (PSSA) and a Fellow of the FIP. He is a past president of the South African Association of Hospital and Institutional Pharmacists (SAAHIP) At the FIP, he served as President of the Hospital Pharmacy Section, Chair of the Board of Pharmaceutical Practice and as a Vice-President.
He was appointed to the South African National Essential Medicines List Committee in 2013 and to the South African Medicines Control Council (MCC) in 2015. He has served on the Names and Scheduling Expert Committee of the MCC since 2000 and on its Legal Expert Committee since 2016. The MCC transitioned to the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA) in 2018.
Gray is currently Chair of the Names and Scheduling Advisory Committee of SAHPRA and serves on its Legal Advisory Committee. He is a Member of WHO’s Expert Panel on Drug Policies and Management and has served as a member, rapporteur and Co-Chair of the Expert Committee on the Selection and Use of Essential Medicines, as Chair of the sub-committee on Essential Medicines for Children, on the WHO Guidelines Review Committee, and WHO Guideline Steering Group for Family Planning Guidance.
Widely published, he has served as a reviewer for a number of international and local journals, is associate editor of the South African Pharmaceutical Journal, section editor of the Journal of Pharmaceutical Policy and Practice, and serves on the editorial board of the International Journal of Clinical Pharmacy, Health Systems and Reform, and BMC Health Services Research.
He has also been a member of the editorial committee of the South African Health Review. Gray has reviewed funding applications for several agencies, including the Health Systems Trust, National Research Foundation, Medical Research Council and UNITAID. He has been actively involved in the development and assessment of medicines and other health-related law in South Africa. Gray is a member of the Rotary Club of Westville, and chairs two related Trusts: The Don McKenzie TB Trust and the Mike Strong Educational Trust.
Words: Nombuso Dlamini