Blogs

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Dear Colleagues, A recently released report from the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission underscores the need to address our nation’s dependence on China for the manufacturing of pharmaceuticals and their active product ingredients (API). In particular, the report recommends that Congress hold hearings on the topic and pursue new quality oversight mechanisms for foreign-sourced drug products. The report shines a light on some foreign manufacturing practices that may pose national security and public health risks. We have previously called for the Department of Health & Human Services and the Department of Homeland Security to conduct a ...
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An Attitude of Gratitude

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Keri DePatis, PharmD, PGY-2 Ambulatory Care Pharmacy Resident, Palm Beach Atlantic University Amy Henneman, PharmD, BCACP, BCPS, CDE, PGY-2 Ambulatory Care and PGY-1 Residency Program Director, Associate Professor of Pharmacy Practice, Palm Beach Atlantic University As the most “Thankful Thursday” of the year (Yes, I’m talking about Thanksgiving!) quickly approaches, society reminds itself to be grateful. Gratitude has been defined as a state of being thankful or a readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness. Dr. Brené Brown highlights the importance of gratitude in many of her books and interviews, stating, “I went into the research thinking ...
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An online story from today (May 13, 2019) from Reuters documents that 75 new cases of measles were recorded  last week,  bringing the total number of measles cases to 839 in what is billed in the country's worst outbreak of measles since 1994. . The article appears to blame the outbreak on "a vocal fringe of U.S. parents" who oppose the use of the measles-mumps-rubella vaccine on the fear that it can cause autism. Coincidentally, there is an article in today's version of The Advisory Board Daily Briefing on the actual reasons for which parents elect to not have their children vaccinated. According to Jennifer Reich, a professor of sociology at the University ...
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To all my fellow ambulatory care clinical pharmacists/managers, I am currently a mental health clinical pharmacist and an active member of ASHP and I serve on the Section Advisory Group (SAG) on Clinical Practice Advancement. In our last SAG meeting, we had discussed peer reviewed journal articles that clinical pharmacists/managers are using in business plans to expand clinical pharmacist positions. We were looking for any articles related to cost-avoidance, involved impact on CMS 5 Stars/HEDIS, etc. that you found impactful. Anything, would be helpful! Please comment with links to resources or email me directly at kong.wong@outllook.com. I would like to ...
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Ride the Technology Wave

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I was very fortunate to attend the recent Technology Summit through the American Association of Diabetes Educators(AADE).  We discussed all things diabetes technology including mobile apps, virtual platforms, remote coaching, continuous glucose monitors (CGM), insulin pumps, tracking devices, and platforms to upload data.  There are a lot of misconceptions about technology.  I’d like to share some of the pearls I learned at this summit and how this is a great opportunity for pharmacists. One might think that millennials or emerging adults would embrace technology the most, but recent evidence suggests that emerging adults may prefer face to face visits. Another ...
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From the first day of my APPE rotation at ASHP, the hot topic was undoubtedly all about “Policy Week”. When introducing myself to ASHP staff, often one of the first questions they’d ask was, “Are you ready for Policy Week?” My answer was a resounding, excitement filled yes-- mainly because I was ecstatic to be at ASHP Headquarters. I didn’t know a lot about Policy Week or what this event entailed. My only experience with ASHP policy was in my first two years of pharmacy school when I attended the two-day Advocacy Boot Camp for pharmacy students. When I saw that during the first week of my rotation, most meetings concerned Policy Week preparation, I figured it ...
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Pharmacy Technicians: Pharmacy Superheroes                 Every October in the United States we recognize pharmacy personnel for the important work they do to improve patient care. Pharmacy technicians are key members of the healthcare team and on National Pharmacy Technician Day, we honor the hard work that they do. Many pharmacy technicians wear capes (metaphorically); their super powers in patient care are evident and essential every day.                Pharmacists and pharmacy technicians have a presence in many areas including, but not limited to home healthcare, retail pharmacies, hospitals, medication research and more.   The work that is visibly ...
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Failing Key To Innovation

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   Tamara Kleinberg in The Real Reasons Failure Is Important To Innovation suggests the following. This isn’t referring to when we practice as a pharmacists with drug therapy but in all the other things we do such as how our services are organized and in our personal lives. We’ve all heard the mantras around failure. “Fail fast. Fail often.” “Love your failures.” “You can’t succeed without failure.” But why? Why is failure so important to innovation and success? Why are we constantly being told to embrace failure rather than run away from it? We are told often it’s because we learn the most from our mistakes. If we aren’t failing, we ...
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Where did the month of September go? With much sadness, I am now writing my last blog as an ASHP APPE student. This month has been filled with learning various aspects of ASHP, engaging with staff, exploring new opportunities, and growing as a student pharmacist. I am very thankful for this unique opportunity as a student and this experience has helped me learn so much.  This week, I had the opportunity to go back to Capitol Hill and visit offices in both the Senate and the House! During Legislative Day, ASHP members wrote thank you cards to their members of congress they met with, and the students at ASHP were able to deliver each of them to the respective ...
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Dear Colleagues, This week we look forward to convening an Opioid Task Force meeting to address the important roles pharmacists play in combating the opioid crisis, a multifaceted issue that requires sustained efforts by all members of the interprofessional care team. While no easy fixes exist to end the opioid epidemic, ASHP and our 50,000 members have been working diligently to shape the solutions around opioids through the engagement of pharmacists on behalf of our patients and communities. Still, there is far more work to be done. The interdisciplinary ASHP Opioid Task Force, chaired by Past President Lisa Gersema, is charged with identifying actionable ...
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I cannot believe that my rotation here at ASHP is more than halfway over! I feel like I am finally getting the hang of how things work around here and I will have to leave so soon. Since Policy Week ended last week, it was nice to ease my way back into a regular routine at the office. I do not think I would call it a routine though,  as each day brings  different meetings  and new collaborations and projects.     As I mentioned in my first blog, students on rotation at ASHP have the opportunity to set up  introductory  meetings with  ASHP  staff  members, and learn  about their   background . I thought it was interesting that not all staff ...
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ASHP   is a proud partner of U.S. National Health IT Week. This week, members of the ASHP Section of Pharmacy Informatics & Technology are sharing our stories within our organizations and beyond to showcase the role of pharmacy informatics professionals have on our patients. I believe pharmacists increase access to high quality health care, improve patient outcomes, and reduce total cost of care across our health system.  I left traditional practice 4 years ago to start a company focused on building software to help pharmacists achieve this goal.   In collaboration with leaders across America, our   team is working toward actionable outcomes that ...
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What a fantastic second week here at ASHP Headquarters! There were over 120 members in Bethesda this week due to Policy Week. It was not the regular 8 am to 5 pm at the office; it was early mornings and long days filled with great conversations, lectures, advocacy, and networking. As a student on rotation with ASHP, I had the unique opportunity of participating in Policy Week and observing the discussion of various ASHP Policy Councils.  ASHP’s Policy Week is where appointed ASHP members from across the country come to together to discuss important topics in today’s healthcare with the purpose of initiating ASHP professional practice policies around these ...
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​ Since January of this year I have been planning and preparing for my rotation at ASHP Headquarters in Bethesda, MD so it is crazy that my first week is already finished! Going from living at home with my family to living with my husband and two dogs, to living on my own in a new city for a whole month is a brand new experience for me. From unpacking and figuring out the Metro Bus system, to finding my way around headquarters and getting started on projects, it has been an amazing first week. What I love most about being here is the people that I get to work with every day. From the security guard who escorts me to the elevator, my co-externs, my preceptors, ...
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I am an American with Inuktitut heritage.  Half white and half Alaskan Native.  I've always been able to look on both sides of the fence. I am 45-year-old woman and have been married for 29 years to the father of my 2 children.  We are planning on renewing our vows within the year!  My mom was born in Koyuk, Alaska.  I have 3 sisters and 2 brothers.  I was the youngest till my little brother was born.  We moved along Sacramento, Ca., Oregon, and landed in Moses Lake, Wa. where I met my husband and I moved in with him when I was 17.  I finished high school and we had our first son on my 19th birthday.  He, Dennis; who is 26 is still living with us today. We also ...
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Maintaining context

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I read a summary of a JAMA article that described a research study on the impact of restricting access within an EMR system to one patient chart at a time, the notion being to test whether such restrictions would reduce placing orders on the wrong patient. Interestingly, the restricted group had a slightly higher error rate (90.7 errors/100,000 orders vs. 88/100000). Further, it was discovered that over 66% of the order sessions for unrestricted users involved having only one patient record open at the time. While that last statistic makes evaluating the impact harder, it does appear that, at least in this population of users, physicians had learned a ...
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Career Malaise?

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Rebecca Knight in How to Beat Mid-Career Malaise offers the following advice. We all have times when we wonder, “Am I at the right organization? Am I in the right job? And is this all there is?” These questions are especially agonizing for mid-career professionals who may be searching for fulfillment while juggling demands at home and intense financial pressures to earn.  How should you address a mid-career crisis? What actions can you take to improve your professional satisfaction? How can you combat the dullness and tedium of your workaday life? And how can you tell if it’s time to make a drastic change? What the Experts Say Mid-career malaise ...
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The World Health Organization has release a list of the ten biggest threats to global health in 2019 : Air Pollution and Climate Change Non-communicable disease Global influenza pandemic Fragile and Vulnerable settings (estimated to affect 22% of global population) Antimicrobial resistance Ebola and other high-threat pathogens Weak primary health care Vaccine hesitancy (estimated to be the cause of 1.5 million deaths worldwide) Dengue HIV (nearly 1 million deaths per year) In looking at this list, one wonders what we, as pharmacists, might directly address in our communities and practices. Please permit me to suggest the following: ...
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ASHP Summer Internship

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If you’ve been following my posts thus far you know that I’ve had an eventful summer! This completes my 10 th week as the ASHP Summer Intern. As my internship with ASHP comes to a close, I’ve reflected on the many experiences and skills I have gained. For starters, I have developed professional relationships with countless of accomplished ASHP members who serve as national pharmacy leaders at the forefront of advancing the profession. As I found my home here this summer, I began to take more initiative in how I wanted my last month to go. As I share my experiences with you, I hope that it inspires you to do the same. Any and every opportunity that presented ...
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If you like podcasts check out Before Breakfast which is under 10 minutes and has great tips like writing smarter emails. 5 Ways to Finally Stop Procrastinating What are the reasons we procrastinate? How can we overcome the habit? Procrastination isn’t just a human problem. Newton’s First Law of Motion says that a body at rest will stay at rest until compelled to do otherwise. Dare we say it? The entire universe procrastinates. But just because procrastination is universal doesn’t mean it’s a good idea. And too often, we find ourselves procrastinating when we know we shouldn’t. We mutter, "I should really be working," as we check Facebook stand ...
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