Magazine article Drug Topics

ASHP Debuts Its 'Summer Meeting' in Baltimore

Magazine article Drug Topics

ASHP Debuts Its 'Summer Meeting' in Baltimore

Article excerpt

HEALTH-SYSTEM EDITION

PROFESSIONAL PRACTICE

The more than 3,000 health-- system pharmacists from across the country who descended on Baltimore to attend a national ASHP meeting were treated not only to a new name for the event, but to a revamped educational format as well.

Earlier this month, ASHP officially debuted this year's "Annual Meeting" as the ASHP Summer Meeting. Accompanying the name change were new educational tracks from which R.Ph.s were able to pick "learning communities" tailored to their specialized educational needs. During the three-day meeting, themed "Learners and Leaders," the health-system pharmacists were able to choose a variety of presentations-accredited by the American Council on Pharmaceutical Education-given within four unique learning communities: Treating Cardiovascular Disease in the Acute Care Setting, Enhancing Management and Leadership Skills, Medication-Use Safety, and Pharmacy Automation. Wrapped around the learning communities were traditional educational sessions, poster presentations, exhibits, and the house of delegates meetings.

Aside from the targeted educational sessions, attendees listened to speakers discuss various issues of key concern to health-system pharmacists. Some particularly hot topics included patient safety and med errors, the pharmacist shortage, emergency preparedness, drug affordability, collaborative practices, and obtaining healthcare provider status at the state and federal levels.

During her inaugural address, ASHP's new president, Debra Deveraux, M.B.A., FASHP, manager, Drug Utilization Review Program, University of Wyoming, offered attendees her vision for health-system R.Ph.s. She outlined four goals she would like to focus on during her tenure as ASHP president.

Deveraux said that pharmacists' must maintain their integrity by "doing what is right for patients, not what is expedient, not what is cheapest, not what is quickest." Pharmacists' main goal has to be an absolute focus on and commitment to patient care, she said. She warned that if pharmacists do not embrace this concept, "we could be replaced by other healthcare professionals ... or pushed aside by technologies that are an inadequate substitute."

A second goal is to move the profession from one that emphasizes product to one that promotes service. "Compensating pharmacists for patient care services will help us build the infrastructure we need to keep the profession moving forward into a patient-focused future, " said Deveraux. Her third goal is in line with what ASHP has been advocating for some time and was once again a highlight of this meeting, the reduction of medication errors while increasing the quality within the health-system environment. …

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