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Pharmacist outreach

School of Pharmacy gearing up for month-long national celebration

Campus and Community

By Heidi Wicks

Every year Pharmacist Awareness Month (PAM) is celebrated across Canada to recognize and educate Canadians about the contributions pharmacists make in the delivery of health care.

Memorial’s School of Pharmacy has planned a number of initiatives to promote the profession of pharmacy.

Student involvement

Pharmacy students in the local branch of the Canadian Association of Pharmacy Students and Interns (CAPSI) and Memorial University Pharmacy Students (MUPS) Society have formed five sub-committees for this year’s PAM activities, including School Outreach, Community Outreach, Communications, University and School of Pharmacy Outreach and Social Media. The Memorial students received the Award of Professionalism during CAPSI’s recent national conference, which provided the inspiration behind the growth of their committee work.

Kyia Hynes, Class of ’17, CAPSI junior representative, will bring greetings on behalf of CAPSI/MUPS at the Pharmacists Association of Newfoundland and Labrador’s (PANL) PAM 2016 opening reception March 3.

Ms. Hynes says that with the implementation of services such as prescribing for minor ailments, injections and medication reviews, pharmacists have the ability to enhance patients’ knowledge.

“We’ll be setting up a booth at the Avalon Mall to speak with the public on medication adherence and expanded scope, we’ll be going into schools to educate students on a variety of topics, including the profession and our school and we have various symposia booked to address topics like the pharmacist’s role in disease screening and management,” she said.

The students’ kick-off event, Newfoundland and Labrador’s Next Top Pharmacist, is a contest taking place March 5 at The Breezeway on the St. John’s campus. The contestants will be revealed in a special video to be screened at the PANL opening reception.

Dean Carlo Marra will also speak at the PANL reception, bringing greetings on behalf of the School of Pharmacy.

Doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) program

The new PharmD program was approved through the Memorial University Senate Committee on Feb. 16, under the proviso that adequate resources are available.

“Our new program is in response to the nationwide requirement for an advanced degree at the entry-to-practice level,” Dr. Marra explained. “The pharmacy profession has undergone significant expansion in the last few years, with the list of services a pharmacist is expected to offer continuing to evolve. The PharmD is the current educational standard across Canada for pharmacy programs, so our new program will allow Memorial University to maintain an accredited program.”

The school has produced a PharmD video to be used for recruitment and informational purposes. The video will premiere at the PANL opening reception and will be available online March 4.

 Medication Therapy Services Clinic

 “Our Medication Therapy Services—or MTS—Clinic is now open and accepting referrals,” added Dr. Marra. “This is a non-dispensing, referral-based, pharmacist-led clinic that offers medication therapy assessments, chronic disease management supports, medication adherence and more. The clinic also offers a Smoking Cessation Program, and will be expanding its community services in the future, so we’re very excited about this venture.”

The school will host an open house at the clinic for its stakeholders on March 24 as part of the PAM 2016 initiatives and will release a promotional video on social media that week.

Pharmacy Research Innovation Day

This annual event takes place March 23 in the former Faculty of Medicine foyer and main auditorium in the Health Sciences Centre.

The mini-symposium features a graduate poster competition with silent judging to take place between 9-11 a.m., followed by a Three-Minute Thesis presentation featuring undergraduate and graduate research.

The plenary speaker is Dr. Mohsen Sadatsafavi, assistant professor, Department of Medicine (Respiratory Evaluation Sciences Program), at the University of British Columbia. Dr. Sadatsafavi will speak to using administrative health databases for health services research.

For updates from the School of Pharmacy during PAM, check the website, or follow on Facebook or Twitter.

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