2005 Volume 125 Issue 3 Pages 271-281
The implementation of Iyaku Bungyo, the changed regulations for drug distribution and the proposed change of pharmacy education from a four-year program to a six-year program are rapidly changing the practice of pharmacy. However, pharmacists' activities still remain at the level of simple dispensing and selling of drugs. Also, the terms that describe the essence of pharmacists' activities, such as services in patient care areas are still unclear. In order to solve and improve the problem of terminology for pharmacists' activities the use of terms related to pharmacists' services were examined in historical context. It was found that the terms “Rinsho yakugaku” and “Iryo yakugaku” have been used as having a similar meaning. Further, the term “Iryo yakugaku” was used to denote the comprehensive scope of pharmacists' services including “Rinsho yakugaku”. It was verified that “Rinsho yakugaku” is a valid translation for “clinical pharmacy”. “Iryo yakugaku” has a more comprehensive translation than “pharmaceutical care”, therefore, it appears that “Iryo yakugaku” is a suitable translation for “pharmaceutical services”. Hence, we proposed “Iryo yakugaku” as the English translation for “pharmaceutical services” and “Chiryo yakugaku” as the Japanese translation for “pharmaceutical care”. There is a need, however for further clarification and definition of pharmacists' activities.