Sharon Foley has taken up the position of Secretary General of the Irish Pharmacy Union (IPU). Ms Foley, from Ballylinan, Co Laois, whose appointment was announced in May, had previously served as Chief Executive Officer of the Irish Hospice Foundation since 2011.
Speaking at the outset of her tenure, Ms Foley said: “I am excited to be taking up the position of Secretary General of the Irish Pharmacy Union. The role pharmacists have been playing at the frontline of healthcare in our communities has never been more important. As was seen through the Covid vaccine campaign, the pharmacy sector can play a continually active role in supporting the national health service.
“My priority as Secretary General will be to maximise the potential of pharmacies, while ensuring that they are adequately supported by all stakeholders. It is clear that the growing shortage of pharmacists is causing significant pressure, and securing Government action to address this will be a key concern of mine.”
IPU President Dermot Twomey wished Ms Foley every success in the role, saying: “We are excited to be welcoming Sharon to the IPU as our new Secretary General. She brings exemplary experience to this role, as demonstrated by her highly successful tenure as CEO of both the Irish Hospice Foundation and the Crisis Pregnancy Agency.
“Ireland’s pharmacy sector is the most accessible and accessed component of our health service. There is huge ambition amongst the profession to expand our role, all for the benefit of patients. This will require action and support from Government, but with Sharon’s experience and dedication, I am sure much progress will be made. On behalf of the IPU and indeed Ireland’s wider pharmacy profession, I wish her every success in the role.”
Ms Foley holds a Master’s Degree in Research from Trinity College Dublin, an MA in Health Promotion from NUI Galway, and a BSc in Nutrition & Dietetics from TCD/TUD, as well as other qualifications in leadership and change management.