In support of American Pharmacists Month, University of Findlay College of Pharmacy faculty and students are rallying to raise awareness.
American Pharmacists Month is a celebration in support of pharmacists around the country. According to the American Pharmacists Association, the purpose of this celebration is to, “bring awareness to the wide array of services pharmacists provide, emphasizing pharmacists’ accessibility and expertise in patient care.”
Tonya Dauterman, Pharm.D., assistant professor of pharmacy practice, associate dean of external affairs and advocacy, and chair of experiential education, said, “American Pharmacists Month celebrates and recognizes the value among the public, patients, policy makers, and others to the vast array of health care services that pharmacists provide in health care.”
Throughout the month of October, students and faculty worked to raise awareness for pharmacists around the country.
Rx Letter Writing Campaign
UF Pharmacy fraternities sponsored a letter writing campaign for the student body on Monday, Oct. 5. Letters were written to Senators Brown and Portman, “to ask for [their] support to include pharmacists as providers under Medicare Part B,” said Dauterman. This would allow pharmacists to bill Medicare for COVID-19 testing.
Honoring Women in Pharmacy
Women in Pharmacists Day, Oct. 16, recognized and celebrated women in the profession of pharmacy. Findlay’s College of Pharmacy created a video of both faculty and student pharmacists in honor of Women in Pharmacy. Listen to the message from Findlay’s women of pharmacy in this video.
Special Visit from Senator Rob McColley
Ohio Senator, Rob McColley, was invited to the University on Oct. 19 in celebration of American Pharmacists Month. During his visit, Senator McColley toured classrooms and labs used by the College of Pharmacy and listened to a group of pharmacy student leaders share with him their concerns regarding the current status of health care in Ohio as it relates to pharmacy. Students shared ideas on how health care access can be improved by including pharmacists as providers.
In Ohio, pharmacists are recognized as providers, however a reimbursement system is yet to be established by Medicaid. The College collectively asked Senator McColley to support the movement for all pharmacists and practice areas to be included in providing services, and to continue to advocate for the profession. It was emphasized that the reimbursement system is crucial for both ambulatory care and community pharmacists to be able to provide high level care to patients all while improving outcomes, avoiding hospitalization, identifying potential medication problems and errors as well as optimizing safe and effective use of medications to be recognized as high-quality services for reimbursement.
Very Important Potential Pharmacist (VIP2) Day
The College of Pharmacy invited 50 high school students to campus for VIP2 Day. During this day, the students toured the college and participated in a mini-camp. During the visit, a variety of pharmacy topics were explored with hands-on demonstrations that allowed students to experience compounding a topical cooling ointment, dispensing a prescription, researching in the genetic lab where they extracted DNA from a strawberry, and learning about kinetics.
Presentation on the Role of Hospital Pharmacists
On Thursday, Oct. 22, the Student Society of Health System Pharmacists and Tim Burkart, Pharm.D., assistant professor of clinical practice in pharmacy, will be giving a presentation on the many roles that hospital pharmacists play. Students, faculty, staff, and the community are invited to stop by the Center for Student Life and the College of Business atrium between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. for the presentation, informational materials, and live demonstrations.
Prescription Take Back Day Advocacy
Pharmacy students and faculty have created fact sheets and video messages about the importance of disposing of unused pharmaceuticals as part of National Prescription Take Back Day, which falls on Saturday, Oct. 24 this year. The United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), states that Take Back Day, “addresses a crucial public safety and public health issue.” “Take Back Day events provide an opportunity for Americans to prevent drug addiction and overdose deaths,” the Administration explained.
Though there is a designated day for awareness, many communities are reluctant to have a special day to avoid large gatherings. The College of Pharmacy, along with the generous support of the Hancock County Board of Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services, is advocating a two-week event to, “take it to the box.” Watch this video to learn how you can properly dispose of medications. Medication Collection Boxes are available 24/7 to the public at the Sheriff’s Office and the Police Department.
“Pharmacists are in many different settings including hospitals, managing specialty medications, academia, diabetes and anticoagulation clinics, industry, and community pharmacy, to name a few,” said Dauterman. “The accessibility of pharmacists in both urban and rural communities provides value and is crucial to providing insight on appropriate use and the safety of medications.”
For more information on the University of Findlay’s College of Pharmacy, visit the College of Pharmacy webpage.