On July 29, Dr. Ken Schafermeyer appeared on KTVI-TV (Channel 2) to discuss health care reform – particularly the adaptation of electronic medical records. The five-year plan will integrate patient health and prescription history from multiple doctors and hospitals to a central electronic records system. The new system will provide health care professionals with the opportunity to access the complete medical history of a patient when administering treatment.
“They’re [the Federal Government] using a stick and a carrot. They carrot is some incentive money. They’re going to increase reimbursement for Medicare and Medicaid providers who adopt electronic medical records,” Schafermeyer said. He went on to say that providers who do not adopt the system by 2015 will see a decline in the amount reimbursed.
When asked about concerns regarding hackers and system security, Schafermeyer pointed to the fact that electronic health records already exist for billing purposes. “The thing people don’t realize is that those records are already out there. What this does is creates a systematic approach with much higher standards, so it should provide more security as well.”
“It’s a high visibility position and a highly respected position within the organization,” Seaton said. “I was very humbled and pleased to learn of my election.” In his role, Seaton will serve as an advocate for members and contribute to the development and implementation of a new strategic plan.
Seaton believes that the new health care reform model will provide a basis for ACCP’s strategic direction by focusing on the role of pharmacy in the health care delivery system. “The key advocacy agenda for the past several years has been provider status. Clinical pharmacists are not recognized by Medicare as health care providers. In other words, pharmacists can’t bill Medicare independently for their clinical services; they can only bill for the medication dispensed. There’s talk of moving reimbursement for all medicine towards the medical home model, which involves billing as an institution rather than individual providers. Reimbursement changes will be the catalyst for a major change in the profession,” he said.
In connection with his role as a regent, Seaton also has been appointed to the ACCP’s political action committee, which will further position him to impact legislative aspects of health care. “I completed a federal government program on political advocacy and primary care, so this fits well with my interests,” he said.
The ACCP is a professional and scientific society focused on providing clinical pharmacists with training and development, support programs, leadership, and networking opportunities that enhance practice and research. STLCOP is home to the largest student chapter of the ACCP, with more than 200 student members.
The American Pharmacists Association (APhA) has announced Dr. John Pieper, St. Louis College of Pharmacy’s new president, as a 2010 APhA Fellow.
Fellows must have at least 10 years of professional experience and be members of either the APhA Academy of Pharmacy Practice and Management or the APhA Academy of Pharmaceutical Research and Science (APhA-APRS). Additionally, fellows must demonstrate a high level of achievement and service through service to APhA and other local, state, and national professional organizations. Dr. Pieper is a member of the APhA-APRS. In 2006, he received the Outstanding Dean Award from the APhA Academy of Student Pharmacists.
Learn more about Dr. Pieper.
Margaret Weck, associate professor of physiology and director of the basic and pharmaceutical sciences division, received the Student Enrichment Award, which is presented to a faculty member whose interaction with students outside the classroom go above and beyond the call of duty. Bob Zebroski, associate professor of history, received the College Enhancement Award for improving the College atmosphere to benefit the students’ college experience. Mark Huelsing, database and application developer, was honored with the President’s Staff Excellence Award, which is presented to a staff member whose work consistently exceeds expectations or who has provided exceptional service to the College.
The three awards were created in 1998 to recognize outstanding service to the College community. Funding for the Byron A. Barnes Awards is provided by the BCES Foundation, Loren G. Cunningham ’50 and his wife, Sarah.
In a unique collaboration, St. Louis College of Pharmacy, Barnes-Jewish Hospital, and Express Scripts are preparing multicultural high school students in St. Louis city and county for careers in pharmacy through the BESt Pharmacy Summer Institute. During a six-week program, students receive instruction in math, science, language arts, and ACT preparation with pharmacy lectures and site visits. The program consists of three levels: BESt I (rising sophomores); BESt II (rising juniors); and BESt III (rising seniors).This summer, 56 students were chosen to participate in the program’s three sessions.
In 2009, the 14 students who participated in the program all received college scholarships to continue their education in health-related fields.
Recently featured on KSDK-TV in St. Louis, participants expressed their dedication to making the most of the opportunity – even if it means sacrificing their summer. “The more knowledge, the more power you have. I’ll always have time to play video games, but it takes a real man to come [to the program], right,” said sophomore Darrin Mosely, who attends Normandy High School.
The goal of the BESt program is to provide multicultural students with the knowledge and skills needed to be successful in pharmacy school. Ultimately, program leaders hope to create a larger, more diverse pool of pharmacists to serve the St. Louis area.
|Danielle Graham and Laurie Harp meet for the first time since the accident.|
“I have been told my car started veering into the next lane. The young lady behind me decided to change lanes. When she moved next to me she looked over and saw I was shaking … We have since learned I was having a seizure. She said my car was going the perfect speed and at the perfect angle she was able to use her car to steer my car across four lanes of traffic to the median. Once my car hit the median it stopped and she was able to come up and put my car in park and she sat there with me holding my hand until help arrived,” recalled Harp in an e-mail to KMOV News.
The two women have been e-mailing since the incident, and met for the first time on June 14. Graham said that she did not consider her own safety when she noticed that Harp was in danger. “All I could think about was getting her to the side of the road. That’s all I thought about,” Graham said.
The Kentucky Intercollegiate Athletic Conference named Jill Jokerst Athletic Director of the Year. News of Jokerst’s
“STLCOP offers intercollegiate athletics for all the right reasons – not for championships, although that's a perk, but as a means to develop character and provide positive intangibles that help our students as they become community leaders. It feels good to know that the 'little guy' doesn't always come in last!” said Jokerst.
Jokerst is quick to recognize STLCOP coaches and student-athletes who also have claimed their fair share of titles and awards during the 2009-10 season, noting that her award is a reflection on the entire STLCOP athletic program.
“I think I can sum it up by saying that our athletes have the right attitude about college sports. They know that they are here to be pharmacists rather than professional athletes, and are satisfied knowing they give their sport all they've got. Sometimes that means a conference championship, national qualification, All-Conference Teams, or recognition for being scholar-athletes. Most of all, it means they're having fun and growing as adults, which is what the college experience should provide,” she said.
Two St. Louis College of Pharmacy professors recently appeared on KTVI's Fox 2 News in the Morning to answer questions about hot topics surrounding drug abuse and recent Tylenol recalls.
Dr. Jill Sailors, ’01/’02, assistant professor of pharmacy practice, addressed the issue of prescription drug abuse, which has more than doubled over the past decade and costs tax payers billions of dollars every year. Dr. Sailors stressed the need for parents to target prevention by talking with their teenagers and monitoring their medicine cabinets.
Dr. Jack Burke, director of pharmacy practice, discussed the Tylenol recall and FDA regulation of medications. While recent recalls of Tylenol medications have caused a media uproar, Dr. Burke highlighted the ability of pharmacists to help consumers select generic alternatives.
On May 15, members of the STLCOP community gathered at the Millennium Hotel to celebrate the accomplishments of the Class of 2010.
Patrick Harper ’10, reminded fellow graduates that STLCOP not only shapes professional careers, but enables students to grow as individuals. “Our profession is not all that we are. Yes, it is what we have studied for the past six years, but it is not what defines us or our time here. We should be defined not by what we did, but by who we’ve become. And it’s our memories of STLCOP that will continue to shape us throughout our lives. Take note that by memories I mean ‘what we remember’ and not ‘what we memorized.’ There’s a difference.”
The Class of 2010 received an average of 1.66 job offers per student before graduation. Forty-nine percent of graduates intend to work in St. Louis upon graduation.
View photos from 2010 Commencement.
On May 5, students put down their books and hit the Quad to have some fun at the Spring Fling and Watermelon Bash.
Spring Fling events, sponsored by the Student Body Union, featured a picnic lunch, mechanical bull, dunking booth, jousting, and an obstacle course. Students, faculty, and staff took time out to enjoy food and games, and 106.5 FM The Arch radio added music and commentary to the event.
Later that day, the games were put away and 140 watermelons were stacked in the Quad for Lambda Chi Alpha’s annual Watermelon Bash. Twenty teams of students, faculty, and staff participated in relays and contests to help raise money for the Arnold Food Pantry. Teams competed in uproarious events such as the watermelon toss, watermelon carry, coin find, and a tug of war. This year, the event raised $1,000, enough to purchase 10,000 pounds of food for local families.
“The Watermelon Bash is a great way for students to come together before finals to have a lot of fun, get a little messy, and raise a lot of money for a great cause,” says Evan Schnur, fourth-year student and Lambda Chi Alpha president.
An employee of the College for more than 13 years, Dr. Beale has been nominated for the award several times. In addition to teaching, he spends a great deal of time participating in research, including the study of a brain protein called TDP-43, which misfolds under certain conditions and causes Lou Gehrig’s disease, early onset dementia, and Alzheimer’s disease.
“The College has given me the opportunity to teach, and to teach well,” Dr. Beale said. “If you’re a good teacher, an excellent teacher, that gets rewarded and valued at STLCOP.”
As his wife, Patty, and daughter, Katie, looked on; Dr. Pieper spoke about his intentions to acquaint himself with each member of the college community in an effort to better understand STLCOP and help make plans for the future. Later that evening, Dr. Pieper and his family joined donors and friends at the annual dinner of the College's Mortar and Pestle Society.
View photos from the reception.
On April 23, Students Affairs and Kappa Psi sponsored Disability Awareness Day. In addition to providing information about the history of civil rights of people with disabilities, eleven students were given the opportunity to experience a disability for the day.
“I realized that everything takes longer and that there are many obstacles in this world for a disabled person because our world is designed for people who are not disabled.” -Grace Benati, wheelchair
“Having a disability simply means that you are challenged with simple, everyday tasks, and reminded not to take them for granted.” -Jennifer Holtz, wheelchair
“This experience opened my eyes to the importance of having patience with people that might have a hard time understanding because they can’t hear.” -Amelia Rhode, hearing impaired
“I made it through the day because my friends literally held my hand all day. People who are sight impaired do not have people to hold their hand all day long.” -Mayuri Dharsandia, sight impaired
“I realized there are a lot of abilities that one takes for granted on a day to day basis.” -Cary Unthank, sight impaired
“I was mostly surprised at the reaction I got from people, and really felt like I gained a greater appreciation for those who have lost limbs.” -Katarina Kaspari, loss of arm
|Sarah Connaway '14, Dean Kim Kilgore, and Laura Stover '11|
Second-year student Sarah Connaway and fifth-year student Laura Stover received certificates of achievement from the American Institute of the History of Pharmacy (AIHP), located at the University of Wisconsin – Madison.
AIHP recognized 50 students nationally for their interest and achievement in studies related to the history of pharmacy. Bob Zebroski, professor of history of medicine and pharmacy, nominated both students for the award in recognition of their outstanding academic performance in his class.
The appointment of Dr. Pieper was announced by Bret Kimes, chairman of the Board of Trustees of the College, following an extensive national search that began over a year ago and considered more than 40 candidates. Dr. Pieper will succeed Thomas F. Patton, Ph.D., who has guided the College since 1994. With one of the longest tenures among local college and university presidents, Patton will step down July 31, and remain at the College as a consultant.
“Dr. Pieper demonstrated that he possesses the vision and passion to advance the College’s reputation for educating outstanding pharmacists who impact health care in our region and nation. The Board is looking forward to our new president’s energy, new ideas, and initiatives that will further enhance the College’s stellar reputation,” said Kimes.
Read the full press release.
Learn more about Dr. Pieper.
This year, the Alumni Association and awards committee presented Dr. John Beale, professor of medicinal chemistry and pharmacognosy, with the 2010 Joe E. Haberle Outstanding Educator Award, as voted upon by students, faculty, and staff. Dr. Beale was recognized as a faculty member who:
• is enthusiastic about his work
• provides perspectives that respect diverse views
• creates a climate conducive to learning
• is attentive, responsive, and available to students
• treats students with respect and sees them as individuals
• projects a positive attitude about students' ability to learn
• uses innovative teaching techniques
"Dr. Beale impressed the selection committee with his philosophy of teaching and innovative techniques used in raising student achievement and building character inside and beyond the classroom," said Matt Bradley '95, chairman of the nominating committee.
Dr. Beale will receive an engraved crystal sculpture, presented at commencement, a monetary stipend, and a reserved parking space in the College's garage.
Students raised $725 for the Sean Kahler Trust during the Red Flag Campaign at St. Louis College of Pharmacy, April 5-9, in honor of what would have been former student Emily Kahler’s birthday on April 8. Emily, her mother, Karen Kahler, and sister, Lauren Kahler, were killed during a shooting on Nov. 28, 2009. James Kraig Kahler, Karen’s husband and father of Emily, Lauren, and Sean, faces capital murder charges. Sean is the only surviving sibling.
Information about relationship violence was displayed on campus, and events such as Red Flag football, flower sales, and red shirt day took place during the week. Terri Weaver, Ph.D., spoke to students about pharmacists' role in domestic violence response. Educational programming was sponsored by Residence Life, Lambda Kappa Sigma, Lambda Chi Alpha, and Kappa Psi in conjunction with the Red Flag Campaign.
“It was a great way to memorialize a fellow classmate as well as raise awareness about an important issue on college campuses,” said Evan Schnur, fourth-year student and LXA president.
More information about the Red Flag Campaign.
|Dr. Amy Tiemeier '02, Bradley Heiken '11, and Rebecca Jones|
The Faculty and Staff Scholarship, awarded to fifth-year student Bradley Heiken, totaled $24,379, and was the largest award. Heiken was chosen for the award by an awards committee consisting of faculty and staff.
View photos from the luncheon.
College President Thomas F. Patton’s signature to acquire 1.2 acres east of Whelpley Hall and the Cartwright Student Center brought the property acquisition deal between STLCOP, Washington University School of Medicine (WUSM), and BJC Health System (BJC) to a close. The deal will enable STLCOP to better serve its students, faculty, and staff by expanding its facilities. The property acquisition deal, now finalized, is three-fold:
• STLCOP sold property on Forest Park Ave. to WUSM
• WUSM sold 1.2 acres, currently used as parking lots, to STLCOP
• STLCOP sold the building and lot at 4333 W. Clayton Ave., to BJC
While decisions regarding use of the newly acquired land have not been finalized, the College is committed to using the land to improve campus resources for future generations of students.
Fourteen students and five faculty members represented St. Louis College of Pharmacy at the American Pharmacists Association (APhA) Annual Meeting and Exposition on March 12-15 in Washington, D.C. Leaders from every practice
As the STLCOP delegate at the meeting of the house of delegates, fourth-year student Joel Henneberry participated in passing three new policy statements and two policy amendments regarding pharmacogenomics, e-prescribing, and personal health records. “These resolutions define the basis for what APhA-ASP stands for, and what we will seek to accomplish in the next year,” said Henneberry.
Fifth-year student Stephanie Seaton arranged a meeting with Mark Fleury, Senator Claire McCaskill’s health staff member, to discuss the important role of pharmacists as members of health care teams. “We focused on the provisions of H.R. 3590 to increase patient access to pharmacist clinical services, medications, and products. We discussed how pharmacists increase patient health outcomes through medication therapy management (MTM) programs and subsequently, that pharmacists should be recognized as providers, and get proper compensation,” said Seaton.
Members of APhA-ASP look forward to the 2011 annual meeting in Seattle.
More information about STLCOP’s APhA-ASP chapter.
More information about the APhA Annual Meeting and Exposition.
During St. Louis College of Pharmacy’s spring break, second-year student Katelyn Enderle and third-year student
|Volunteers at the St. Louis Foodbank<|
Most service projects lasted a half day or more and provided students with opportunities to learn about the needs of their community and participate in meeting those needs.
“In our few hours of service [at the St. Louis Foodbank], which included sorting food from a food drive and packaging meal boxes from superstore regular donations, we were able to provide over 7,000 meals,” said Enderle.
As a guest on Fox 2 “News in the Morning,” Nicole Gattas, assistant professor of pharmacy practice at St. Louis College of Pharmacy, provided tips for parents to distinguish seasonal allergies from colds. She stressed the importance of recognizing and tracking allergy symptoms to ensure proper treatment.
Gattas cited coughing, sneezing, watery eyes, and a runny nose as common allergy symptoms and recommended that parents track symptoms in order to identify primary triggers such as pollen, pets and indoor dust mites. Gattas also suggested that parents consult their child’s physician to rule out asthma and respiratory infections, which are often accompanied by symptoms similar to those of allergies.
“The one symptom you will not see is fever, so if the child develops a fever that’s probably something more serious,” Gattas said.
Watch the segment to learn more.
Recent discussions surrounding the Medicare “doughnut hole” emphasize the importance of understanding the advantages and disadvantages of the current health care system. Under federal guidelines, seniors pay 25 percent of the cost of their drugs, but once expenditures exceed $2,830, they are responsible for all drug costs until their out-of-pocket expenses top $4,550. Then, Medicare’s “catastrophic coverage” kicks in, covering 95 percent of costs. In short, the “doughnut hole” is the coverage gap for prescription medication costs – the gray area that ultimately determines medication costs, and oftentimes proper usage, for seniors.
“The ‘doughnut hole’ in Medicare Part D prescription coverage is a product of competing interests, economic realities, political influence, and compromise,” said Ken Schafermeyer, a health care economist and professor of pharmacy administration at St. Louis College of Pharmacy. “To increase access to prescription drugs, and yet create some limits on federal expenditures, the government decided that it would cover both basic prescription benefits for all seniors and catastrophic coverage for those seniors with unusually high expenses … unfortunately, it is a rather confusing situation in which senior have fairly generous prescription coverage for several months and then often find themselves falling into the ‘doughnut hole’ in which there is no coverage.”
Studies show that seniors enrolled in the Medicare Part D plan are less likely to use prescription drugs or use them incorrectly because of the coverage gap. “First, program coverage is hard to understand. Seniors are often bewildered why a prescription would be covered one month but not the next. Second, seniors are often surprised about the true cost of their medications and sometimes unprepared or unable to cover these expenses. Third, the temporary lack of coverage may discourage some seniors from continuing their medical treatment. Lack of necessary treatment can, however, lead to more complications: diminished health status and an overall increase in medical expenditures. If this is the case, then the doughnut hole can cost more than it saves,” said Schafermeyer.
Pharmacists play an important role in helping seniors avoid the doughnut hole by using generic products rather than their brand-name counterparts and ensuring that prescription drugs are used appropriately. “Proper drug usage can be addressed through formulary systems that encourage the use of the most cost-effective drug products, drug utilization review programs aimed at improving prescribing, dispensing, and drug usage patterns, and disease management programs that focus on achieving desired health outcomes. As participants in these initiatives, pharmacists can be part of the solution to high health care costs."
Click here to read more.
St. Louis College of Pharmacy received an unrestricted $5.9 million dollar gift from the Laura Whelpley Trust that will be used to support growth, implement strategic plan objectives, and fund major academic initiatives.
Established in 1954 by Laura Whelpley, the original trust grew from $200,000 to nearly $12 million over a 56-year period. During this time, the trust was managed by her grand nephew, Willis (Bill) Hauser, who quit his job as an accountant to oversee the trust and carry out his great aunt’s wishes. Hauser died in January at the age of 95, leaving the College half the trust.
“I think it’s fair to say that in 1954 no one would have imagined a trust of $200,000 becoming nearly $12 million in 2010,” St. Louis College of Pharmacy Thomas F. President Patton said. “The College is grateful to Bill Hauser, who exceeded his aunt’s wishes in managing the trust. Bill, like Mrs. Whelpley, loved the College and cared about its ability to help students realize their potential and become good pharmacists.”
Over a dozen cultures were represented at the International Students Organization’s ISO Night last Saturday at St. Louis College of Pharmacy. Nearly 150 people attended the event, which raised money for Meds and Food for Kids, a local nonprofit that provides food and nutrition to malnourished children in Haiti.
A diverse group of students worked together to emphasize the dress, dance, music, and foods of various cultures. The evening included African American and Irish step dancing routines, a piano duet by students representing China and Taiwan, and an array of food and clothing reflecting traditions of China, Ghana, India, Ireland, Mexico, the Middle East, Nepal, Poland, Taiwan, Thailand, and the United States. Students were eager to showcase the customs and traditions associated with their ethnic backgrounds. “Students from different backgrounds … really planned, directed, and pulled off the event. Attendees gained an appreciation of the whole world, of the rest of the world – of the beauty and talent and interconnections,” said Carol Oliver, ISO advisor and associate professor of English.
ISO Night ticket sales and donations exceeded $1,500, including a $1,000 donation from Kappa Psi. ISO will continue to accept donations to meds and Food for Kids through March 10 at the business office.
Samih Darwazah, founder and chairman of Hikma Pharmaceuticals and a 1964 St. Louis College of Pharmacy graduate, will return to St. Louis May 15 to deliver the commencement address to the class of 2010 and receive an honorary doctorate.
Darwazah received his undergraduate degree from the American University of Beirut (AUB) in Lebanon before coming to St. Louis College of Pharmacy, where he earned his graduate degree. He worked for Eli Lilly for 12 years before forming Himka in 1978 in Amman, Jordan with $150,000. Hikma is currently the fourth-largest pharmaceuticals company on the London Stock Exchange (LSE), with annual sales exceeding $550 million in 2008. Specializing in branded, generics and injectable pharmaceuticals, it was the first Arab company to export pharmaceutical products to the U.S.
Darwazah served as Jordan’s minister of energy and mineral resources in 1995 and 1996, founded the Jordan Trade Association, and was a member of the advisory economic council to the King of Jordan before being selected middle east entrepreneur of the year by Ernst & Young in 1997.
Read more about Darwazah.
Dedicated to the advancement of student and faculty research, the Research and Scholarly Activity Community (RSAC) and the student chapter of the American College of Clinical Pharmacy (ACCP) hosted a Student Research Symposium last Saturday at St. Louis College of Pharmacy. Sixteen oral presentations and seven posters highlighted clinical and nonclinical topics ranging from ADHD, perception of the elderly in college freshmen, p glycoprotein substrates, and warfarin dosing based on genotype. Thomas C. Dowling, Pharm.D., Ph.D., associate professor and vice chair of research at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy, stressed the importance of research careers in pharmacy as the keynote speaker.
“Having the experience of working on a research project and giving a formal presentation will give students a head start in understanding the profoundness of research and in giving formal presentations,” said Niti Patel, fifth-year student. Patel partnered with fellow researchers to showcase research on the prevalence of daily medication adherence among children with Sickle Cell Disease.
Dean of Pharmacy Wendy Duncan, Ph.D., expects the Student Research Symposium to become an annual event.
On February 24, St. Louis College of Pharmacy students dined out to support the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Metro St. Louis/Greater Missouri Chapter Dine Out and Donate program. Five area Applebee’s restaurants donated 10 percent of all restaurant sales between 4 – 7 p.m. to fund resaerch to treat, cure, and prevent diabetes. Many students participated by dining at the Applebee’s near campus, helping to raise $1,157.
Eutectic pride was in full force during Homecoming week at St. Louis College of Pharmacy. Events included a pie-eating contest, chili cook-off, spirit days, Olympiad, dining out for charity, pizza and T-shirt sales, and men’s and women’s basketball games, including a rally and tailgate between games. Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity was named the overall winner for this year’s events.
Students honored Dr. Patton at the Olympiad with a plaque recognizing his leadership and service as College presidnet and invited him and his staff to serve as honorary event judges. “It turned out to be a very memorable and unique Olympiad that I think not only the students got a kick out of, but Dr. Patton and his staff as well,” said Brian Ogweno, fourth-year student and stuent council president.
Homecoming activities helped raise more than $2,000 for Lydia’s House, a transitional home for abused women and their children. Student Council will present a check to Lydia's House at the end of March.
Greek Chapters Raise Funds for Haiti
During the week of February 22, known on campus as Haiti Relief Week, members of Lambda Chi Alpha, Kappa Epsilon, Lambda Kappa Sigma, and Phi Delta Chi fraternities will each hold a fundraiser to benefit the American Red Cross relief effort in Haiti. Fundraisers include ribbon sales and food sales in the Cartwright Student Center and Residence Hall. “Even though the impact of our small campus won’t compare to some of the more sizable donations going to Haiti, getting our students involved in helping their community is very important to their future in the profession of pharmacy,” says Evan Schnur, fourth-year student and Lambda Chi Alpha president.
Kacy Wittler, fourth-year student and president of Kappa Epsilon, came up with the idea for the organizations to work together in an effort to bring many students together to support victims of the recent natural disaster. “I knew we could all make a bigger impact as a Greek community than if any of us tried to do something alone,” Wittler says.
As part of Black History Month, St. Louis College of Pharmacy joined with radio station WFUN (95.5 FM) in an advertising campaign to raise awareness of the pharmacy profession. The 60-second commercials featured STLCOP graduates – Pam Marshall '90, David Frye '68, and Armon Crawford ‘63.
Crawford, a staff pharmacist at the Metropolitan St. Louis Psychiatric Center, talked about helping patients understand their medication. Marshall, a district pharmacy supervisor at Walgreens, discussed leading a team of dedicated pharmacists who encourage and empower patients to ask questions. And Frye, a pharmacy manager at Walmart, talked about being health care resource for his patients.
To help patients better understand their medicines and the role of pharmacists, St. Louis College of Pharmacy sponsored a community seminar, “Ask the Pharmacist,” at Progressive Missionary Baptist Church in Columbia, Mo.
The event was held in conjunction with “Show-Me Pharmacy,” a statewide professional development initiative sponsored by the College’s continuing education department.
“The seminar provided a valuable service to the community,” says Necole Powell, director of alumni services. “In many cases, people don’t realize that pharmacists have a wealth of knowledge of not only medicines, but also heath care in general. Pharmacists are generally very accessible and open to helping patients. Those who attended the seminar left knowing they can always consult with their pharmacist.”
“Ask the Pharmacist” panelists included Steve Calloway '78, a STLCOP Board of Trustees member and pharmacist at University of Missouri Health Care in Columbia, Mo.; Garth Reynolds '00, president of the College’s Alumni Association and pharmacy supervisor at Dierbergs Markets in St. Louis; and Laura Butkievich ’06, who works as an internal medicine expert at University of Missouri Health Care. In addition, Kay Barbee from the Central Missouri Agency on Aging provided Medicare information to participants.
The final St. Louis College of Pharmacy presidential candidate, Dr. John A. Pieper, will be on campus February 11-12.
The College’s faculty, staff, students, and alumni are invited to meet Dr. Pieper during two open forums scheduled for Feb. 11 at 12 p.m. and Feb. 12 at 1 p.m. The College community also is invited to a reception for Dr. Pieper at 4 p.m. on Thursday. Also while in St. Louis, Dr. Pieper will meet with alumni, health care leaders, community members, and the College’s Board of Trustees. The College’s other presidential candidate, Dr. Benjamin Akande, was on campus Feb. 3-4.
The College’s Board of Trustees will make the final decision on STLCOP’s next president after reviewing feedback from those who meet with the candidates. STLCOP’s current president, Dr. Thomas F. Patton, announced he will be stepping down as president in June.
The STLCOP Chapter of the American Pharmacists Association Academy of Student Pharmacists (APhA-ASP) held its annual Patient Counseling Competition on January 21 and 22. Sixteen students participated in the event. Prior to the competition students were given a list of 10 drugs they might have to counsel a patient on. At the competition the judges presented each student with a patient profile and a medication. The student had five minutes to prepare a patient counseling session on how to take the medication and its monitoring parameters. Four pharmacists judged the students' sessions.
Fifth-year student Kristian Navickas won first place for most effectively counseling her patient. She will represent the College in the National APhA Counseling Competition in March at its annual meeting in Washington D.C.
Fifth-year student Davin Patel placed second and fifth-year student Valerie Christy placed third in the STLCOP competition.
Dr. Benjamin Akande, one of two finalists for the position of president of St. Louis College of Pharmacy, will be on campus February 4-5. Dr. Akande is currently a professor of business economics and the dean of the School of Business and Technology at Webster University in St. Louis. The College’s current president, Dr. Thomas F. Patton, announced he will be stepping down as president in June.
During his visit, Dr. Akande will answer questions from the College’s faculty, staff, and students during two open forums (on Feb. 3 at 12 p.m. and Feb. 4 at 1 p.m.); and have meetings with alumni, health care leaders, community members, and the College’s Board of Trustees. The College community is also invited to a reception for Dr. Akande at 4 p.m. on Thursday. The College’s other presidential candidate will be on campus Feb. 11-12. The candidate’s name and information will be released on the College’s presidential search site on Wednesday, Feb. 10.
In January, Professor Nimita Varga and several St. Louis College of Pharmacy students volunteered at the kickoff celebration for Walk MS, a fundraising event of the Gateway Area Chapter of the Multiple Sclerosis Society. Varga and the students conducted blood pressure, blood glucose, and cholesterol screenings for attendees of the celebration.
"It’s so important to get involved the community and include students in activities, too. It helps students develop an appreciation for diverse groups of people, and patients benefit by understanding how pharmacists and student pharmacists can play an important role in their health care."
At the kickoff luncheon, held in Whelpley Auditorium, the community learned more about the illness and signed up to participate in several upcoming MS fundraising walks throughout the St. Louis region. It also was an opportunity for Walk MS team leaders to learn about fundraising and recruitment strategies.
Last year, 40 STLCOP students, faculty, and staff participated in the Steppin’ Out for MS Night Walk and raised nearly $1,200 for research and services for people with MS.
In the midst of final projects and exams, STLCOP students are finding time to give back to others during the holiday season.
|Members of LXA at their Breakfast with Santa event.|
- Student Council, Delta Sigma Theta, Lambda Kappa Sigma, Lambda Chi Alpha, Kappa Epsilon, Kappa Psi, the Student Pharmacist Association, students in Residence Hall, and the Catholic Student Organization all contributed items and helped assemble 100 care packages. The packages were delivered military members overseas during this holiday season.
- Members of Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity held their annual Breakfast with Santa. For $10 children enjoyed breakfast, meeting Santa, and making holiday crafts. Proceeds supported the American Cancer Society.
- The Campus Activities Board sold pizzas during lunch to raise money for Santa's Helpers, an organization that collects gifts for underprivileged children in St. Louis.
- Lambda Kappa Sigma collected gifts for the Family Resource Center through their Angel Tree in Whelpley Hall and sold candy grams to purchase additional presents for the center's children.
STLCOP received a two-year health literacy grant for $259,139 from the Missouri Foundation for Health, which it will begin to receive this December. The grant will be used to strengthen the College’s health literacy program by increasing the curriculum’s focus in pharmacy practice skills labs and experiential activities to enhance pharmacist-patient interactions and patient education.
Health literacy concepts will be taught in the classroom, through on-campus advanced pharmacy practice lab, and through student work with independent living senior citizens as part of students 5th-year introductory practice experience. While teaching students to educate their patients about medications has always been included in the curriculum, the grant will offer the opportunity to expand these efforts, provide more hands-on practice in lab and with real patients, and better evaluate what works to enhance student skills and abilities in this area.
The grants funding was provided in whole by The Missouri Foundation for Health. The Missouri Foundation for Health is a philanthropic organization whose vision is to improve the health of the people in the communities it serves.
Serving It Up for the St. Louis Foodbank
Students and faculty came together on November 17 to raise money for the St. Louis Foodbank and play volleyball. Seven teams participated in the charity Student-Faculty Volleyball Tournament at the Pillbox, which raised $177.34 for
Ashley McKinley, a second-year volleyball player, and Karen Obermann, a third-year cross country runner, organized the tournament as a community service project assigned through their Varsity Sports class to promote the NAIA’s "Champions of Character" initiative. “One of the objectives in class is to participate and involve our sports teams in a service project,” Obermann says. “Ashley plays volleyball, and I run cross country, but we worked together on the project to raise money for the foodbank, which is currently experiencing a food shortage. The tournament also promoted school spirit, physical exercise, and communication within the STLCOP community.”
Students on the "Drug Dealers" team won the tournament after defeating the "Ford Taurus Wagon” team in the championship match. Prizes were awarded to the tournament winners as well as for "best team T-shirt," which was won by the "Greek Combination Domination" team.
"I really think this was a fun way to raise money," McKinley says. "I had a few teams ask that we have another one. It makes me happy that they had fun!"
On Wednesday, Nov. 11, about 60 STLCOP students organized and packed 100 care packages to send to military members overseas. Of these 100 packages, 52 were sent to friends and family of faculty, staff, and students at the
|Students after putting together the packages.|
The philanthropic event united several campus organizations. To help support the project, the Residence Hall’s resident assistants held a contest among the floors to see which could donate the most goods to win a pizza party. Together, the residents donated a total of 522 items. Money was also raised by selling “Support the Troops” T-shirts on campus. As a result of these two events and generous donations from the faculty and student body, more than $900 was raised throughout the three weeks leading up to the drive, to buy package items and cover shipping costs.
“Our hope is that the packages we have sent will do their part to brighten soldiers’ holiday season while they are away from home,” says Heather Pautler, fourth-year student and one of the co-coordinators of the event. “Showing support of our troops was important to all of us who were involved in the Care Package Drive.”
The women of Kappa Epsilon, a women’s professional pharmacy fraternity, participated in several events to increase breast cancer awareness and funding during October, National Breast Cancer Awareness month. The women encouraged classmates to participate in several of the events, which included:
|KE members delivering carnations and cards at Siteman Cancer Center in St. Louis|
- the Walk for the Children benefiting the National Children’s Cancer Society, more than 72 STLCOP students participated;
- breast cancer pin sales through Lee Jean Denim Day, which allowed faculty, staff, and students to dress down one day, which raised $375;
- a bra decorating contest in which 68 students decorated a bra for a $1 donation;
- pink hair extensions for $1 courtesy of Preston Salon in Clayton, which raised $1,360;
- a breast cancer survivor speaker from Hadassah; and
- breast cancer awareness T-shirts sales, which has raised $1,472.
The proceeds raised from the events were donated to the Susan G. Komen Foundation. In addition, throughout the year the fraternity women deliver carnations and cards to Siteman Cancer Center patients at Barnes-Jewish Hospital, and each summer the fraternity organizes a team to participate in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure in downtown St. Louis. “We strive to continue to educate student pharmacists and the public about breast cancer, including screening methods and risk factors,” says Nicci Brougham, fourth-year student and Kappa Epsilon secretary.
Breast Cancer is the leading type of cancer in women and the second most common cause of cancer-related death in the United States. Kappa Epsilon adopted breast cancer awareness as a national project in memory of Linda Rodgers, who developed breast cancer during her term as Kappa Epsilon’s Grand Council president.
Twenty-one STLCOP students traveled to Anaheim, Calif., for the American College of Clinical Pharmacy's (ACCP) annual meeting during the last week of October. STLCOP has the largest ACCP student chapter in the country,
|STLCOP ACCP members and faculty advisor Dr. Stacy|
Students attended a residency information session to learn of the many different residency opportunities available to them. They also met the author of their Therapeutics textbook, Dr. DiPiro, at a round-table discussion aimed at exploring different aspects of clinical pharmacy. Fifth-year students Niti Patel and Kyle Mays presented research posters at the meeting.
STLCOP faculty members also presented research posters and Zachary Stacy, STLCOP’s ACCP faculty adviser and associate professor of pharmacy practice, lectured to other faculty advisors on how to build and maintain student chapters that increase students’ interest in clinical pharmacy.
“The main thing we took away from the meeting was realizing how much there’s to do in clinical pharmacy and figuring out the best path for us, as students, to take to pursue our goals of being a clinical pharmacist,” says Kyle Amelung, fourth-year student and STLCOP’s ACCP president-elect.
The Student Council executive board, the council’s advisor Dr. Zebroski, and Dean Kim Kilgore attended an American
|Dr. Zebroski, Laine Rapp, Brian Ogweno, Heather Pautler, Dean Kilgore, Jessica Kassing, and Evan Schnur|
STLCOP’s Student Council executive board specifically looked to connect with other pharmacy schools' student councils and to build strong relationships amongst each other, so they can effectively lead the student body this school year. “At the conference we gathered ideas for a better structure for our Student Council and learned ways to reach the goals we have set,” says Laine Rapp, fourth-year student and Student Council’s current president. “We now have a clear vision of where we want our organization to go, what we want to see change, and what we think is currently working well for our school.”
City Proclaims October American Pharmacists Month in St. Louis
On Friday, Oct. 9, the St. Louis Board of Aldermen passed a resolution proclaiming October as
|Clockwise from top left: Jack Burke, Garth Reynolds, Davin Patel, Lewis Reed, Thomas Patton, Joseph Roddy, Wendy Duncan|
Present to accept the resolution on along with Patton, were Wendy Duncan, dean of pharmacy and vice president for academic affairs; Jack Burke, director of pharmacy practice; Garth Reynolds, president of the Alumni Association; and Davin Patel, a fifth-year student.
In observance of American Pharmacists Month, students at St. Louis College of Pharmacy gave back to the community by organizing STLCOP C.A.R.E.S (Community Awareness Reaching Everyone in St. Louis). The day of activities is the
They participated in:
- beautification efforts at Operation Brightside, a cleaning and greening initiative that enriches and beautifies St. Louis by restoring, maintaining and growing the community landscape; Gateway Greening (Bell Garden), which promotes urban neighborhood vitality and stability, healthy living, and quality of life through community food projects, education and wellness programs, and civic greening; and Forest Park’s Pagoda Circle.
- the organization and distribution of supplies at KidSmart, which supplies pencils, paper and crayons to deserving school children.
- the National Children’s Cancer Society (NCCS) 5K Run/Walk to help support awareness of children with cancer. Students helped with registration and handed out water during the run/walk. Others helped at a kids’ carnival that was associated with the event.
At Shop ‘n Save grocery stores and Walgreens pharmacies throughout St. Louis, students also conducted blood pressure and diabetes screenings and provided information about heartburn, asthma, poison prevention and H1N1 influenza information to the public.
STLCOP faculty members and students volunteered their time on Statewide Fall Awareness Day, Sept. 22. Faculty
|Sixth-year student Kasie Essner, Lt. Gov. Kinder, and Assistant Professor Amy Tiemeier with a patient at Wesley House|
The STLCOP volunteers assessed each patient and screened any medications the patient was on that would increase their risk of falling. The patients were then instructed to take their personal and medication assessment to their physician for his or her review. The pharmacists also briefly educated patients on the importance of bone health.
“Pharmacists are in a key position to provide important health screenings to society since they interact with patients in the community setting more often than most other health care professionals,” says Amy Tiemeier, assistant professor of pharmacy practice.
Lambda Chi Alpha (LXA) fraternity members gathered a team to participate in the 2009 Light the
This year the chapter raised more than $1,500 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. In addition to participating in the walk, some chapter members sold balloons at a local Schnucks to raise additional money for the society. The money will assist patients who are suffering from leukemia and lymphoma and their families.
St. Louis College of Pharmacy’s Eutectic mascot got a fresh new look over the summer.
The new Eutectic worked the crowd while attendees ate cake, played Eutectic-themed games, and mingled. T-shirts emblazoned with the new Eutectic logo were raffled off to students, and everyone was invited to contribute his or her ideas to a naming contest for the new mascot. The new mascot will be at home volleyball and basketball games this year to lead the crowd in cheering on the Eutectic teams.
In addition to a new mascot costume, the athletics department has redesigned its logos to reflect the new mascot. Changes will be seen throughout the year on memorabilia, stationary, uniforms, and in the Pillbox.
|Rabe Hall, |
4520 Forest Park Ave.
St. Louis College of Pharmacy and Washington University School of Medicine (WUSM) have reached an agreement to swap 1.2 acres in the Central West End. The College will be acquiring two separate surface parking lots located at the southwest and northwest corners of Parkview Place and Taylor Avenue from WUSM. In return, WUSM will receive the lot located at 4520 Forest Park Ave, where the College’s Rabe Hall currently sits. Demolition of Rabe Hall began on Sept. 3. The deal will be finalized shortly after the hall is cleared.
“In acquiring the two parking lots, which are adjacent to campus, St. Louis College of Pharmacy has an opportunity to grow and meet the needs of future students and its faculty and staff,” says Thomas Patton, president, St. Louis College of Pharmacy. “It’s vitally important for the College to improve its physical capabilities to most effectively educate future pharmacists. Those pharmacists will greatly contribute to the health and wellbeing of everyone in our community.”
Additionally, through a lease agreement, WUSM will retain access to the Parkview Place and Taylor Avenue parking lots until the College begins to develop the land.
Wednesday, Aug. 26 marked the first day of the 2009-10 school year at St. Louis College of Pharmacy. The College
On Thursday, Aug. 27 the College and its students officially welcomed 245 first-year students and nine transfer students during the Welcome Back Barbecue and Resource Fair, which is attended by first- through sixth-year students, faculty, and staff. In addition, on Thursday evening 204 third-year students received their white pharmacy coats, a symbol of the beginning of their professional years of study.
The College’s increasing enrollment numbers are consistent with national data that pharmacists remain in demand. Currently, STLCOP is the 12th largest Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D) program in the nation and one of more than 100 pharmacy schools in the United States.
2009-10 first-year class by the numbers:
Average high school GPA: 3.77
Average ACT score: 28
States represented: 15
The summer of 2009 will be one Brad Meyer, a fifth-year student, will always remember. Meyer completed a 900-mile, 12-day solo bike ride from St. Louis to Denver, and realized along the way how warm-hearted and caring people can be.
|Meyer stopping for a rest in Colorado.|
Meyer began his journey on August 1 along Missouri’s Katy Trail, then traveled Highway 65 onto Highway 36, which took him into Denver on August 12. On average, he rode about seven hours, which amounted to 70 to 80 miles per day. Meyer stopped to eat and rest in the small towns he rode through, which were located about every 30 miles of his trip. At night, he pitched a tent in someone’s front yard or on church grounds.
In Utica, Mo., when high winds were threatening to destroy Meyer’s tent, a man picked him up and drove him a short distance to a nearby gas station for safety. A couple of hours after the storm passed, he pitched his tent behind a church, where one of its members brought him food and water.
In Marysville, Kan., Meyer stopped at a church and asked permission to camp on the premises. A family member of the pastor, also a bicyclist, invited Meyer to his house for dinner and to use his laundry room.
“This ride has been one of the hardest things I’ve ever done,” Meyer says. “But these random acts of kindness have been eye opening. You often hear people say, ‘The world is a bad place, or that people just aren’t nice.’ This trip has shown me that the world isn’t such a bad place.”
Upon his arrival in Denver, Meyer met up with fifth-year classmate Morgan Gray, who is participating in a pharmacy internship there. On August 23, the two will drive back to St. Louis to prepare for classes, which begin three days later.
Fifth-year student Stephanie Seaton has been appointed vice chair of the American College of Clinical Phar
As vice chair, Seaton will help the StuNet Committee accomplish the board of regents’ charges, work to bring new ideas to StuNet and assist the chairperson. Last year’s charges, which Seaton assisted with, included developing a clinical pharmacy resource kit for first-year pharmacy students and developing a national student pharmacist competition for ACCP to implement.
As chair of the committee during the 2010-11 school year, Seaton will keep many of the same responsibilities she had as vice chair while assuming more leadership roles and working more directly with the ACCP's board of regents and student members.
Seaton is looking forward to her appointment as she says the ACCP has been a great resource for her as a student pharmacist. “I would like to become a geriatric pharmacist with a clinical and research focus,” Seaton says. “ACCP offers many resources to help develop me as a clinical pharmacist, and has already opened many opportunities for me. Subsequently, I want to help get more students involved with clinical pharmacy, which is a goal of StuNet.”
Bret Kimes, general partner for investment banking at Edward Jones, has been elected chairman of the St. Louis College of Pharmacy Board of Trustees for 2009-10. In addition to naming a chairman, the board also selected three new trustees: Todd Evers, Joseph Fleishaker, and Everett Neville.
Evers ‘87 is the owner of Evers Group of Pharmacies, which consists of five pharmacies in Illinois. He’s also secretary for the Illinois Pharmacy Association and treasurer of the Gateway East Pharmacy Association. Evers is a member of the Metro East Pharmacy Association and National Community Pharmacists Association and serves as a preceptor for STLCOP and Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville pharmacy students.
Fleishaker is vice president of the Pharmacokinetics, Dynamics and Metabolism Unit at Pfizer, where he has worked since 2003. He has two decades of experience in clinical pharmacology and translational medicine, and currently leads a team of 50 scientists at Pfizer's global research and development laboratories in St. Louis. Prior to Pfizer, he was with Pharmacia and its legacy companies. Fleishaker received his bachelor's degree in pharmacy from Duquesne University and his doctorate in pharmaceutical science from the University of Kentucky.
Neville is vice president for pharma strategy and contracting for Express Scripts Inc., where he has worked since 1998. A graduate of the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill School of Pharmacy, Neville has worked as a clinical pharmacist and directed clinical pharmacy operations for hospitals and companies prior to joining Express Scripts. Neville currently directs Express Scripts' strategy related to pharmaceutical manufacturers, drug procurement, and specialty drug access.
Eleven St. Louis College of Pharmacy-affiliated residents joined the College’s faculty this July. The residents will serve as full-time clinical instructors of Pharmacy Practice for the 2009-10 school year while completing their postgraduate year one (PGY-1) or postgraduate year two (PGY-2) programs. Drs. Jessica Boyet ’09, R. Andrew Jett ’09, and Recennah Braxton are PGY-1 pharmacy residents at John Cochran St. Louis VA Medical Center. Drs. Ryan
|Front row, from left: Drs. Jennifer Flesner, Nancy Lu, Caroline Pitney, Tara Gleason, Marissa Salvo. Middle row, from left: Drs. Ryan Camden, Recennah Braxton, Timothy Holman. Back row, from left: Drs. Andrew Jett, B.J. Edwards, Jessica Boyet|
Postgraduate residencies are organized, directed, and accredited programs that build upon the education received from accredited pharmacy degree programs. The PGY-1 programs enhance general competencies in managing medication-use systems and support optimal medication therapy outcomes for patients with a broad range of disease states. The PGY-2 programs increase the resident’s depth of knowledge, skills, attitudes, and abilities to raise the resident’s level of expertise in medication therapy management and clinical leadership in the area of focus. Some graduates choose to become board certified in this program. Residents also have the opportunity to participate in the College’s Resident Education Academy, a certificate program designed to introduce teaching and learning principles followed by opportunities to participate in designated spring semester courses.
The Missouri Society of Health-System Pharmacists (MSHP) honored two St. Louis College of Pharmacy faculty members this year. Julie Murphy, Pharm.D., BCPS, received the MSHP Pharmacist of the Year award and Tricia Berry ‘94/’95, Pharm.D., BCPS, received the MSHP Research and Education Foundation’s 2009 Thomas J. Garrison Achievement Award.
Julie Murphy, assistant professor of Pharmacy Practice at the College, received the Pharmacist of the Year award for her high level of integrity and significant contributions that have affected the practice of health-system pharmacy in Missouri. She was selected by previous recipients of the award and from nominations from MSHP members, board of directors, and staff. Murphy’s clinical practice site is at St. John’s Mercy Medical Center and Mercy Family Medicine where she is the PGY-1 residency coordinator. She also is very active in professional organizations and has contributed to the profession through her many lectures, poster presentations, and publications.
The MSHP Research and Education Foundation board selected Berry, director of experiential programs and a professor of Pharmacy Practice at STLCOP, for her outstanding accomplishments, including development of an innovative service in health-system pharmacy, publications, and activity with pharmacy students. Her clinical interest is in the area of asthma management. Berry also is very involved with professional organizations and is on the board of the MSHP Research and Education Committee. “I am honored to receive this award,” Berry said in her acceptance speech. “I feel fortunate to be a part of a profession that has so many great people and such a strong mission.”
St. Louis College of Pharmacy faculty and staff joined together this past fall to further demonstrate their dedication to the
|Dr. Richard McCall, professor of physics; Steven Paradee; and Dave Rice, director of Financial Aid|
Fifth-year student Steven Paradee, was the recipient of the award at this spring’s Scholarship and Awards Luncheon. Paradee was chosen by the Financial Awards Committee, which consisted of faculty and staff members. At the luncheon, 198 scholarships totaling $322,190 were awarded to 177 students, with the Faculty and Staff Scholarship being the largest award. “When I found out I was going to receive this award I was speechless; I was so touched,” Paradee says. “It means a lot to me that we have such a great group of faculty and staff who put a great interest into the student body.”
This spring, President Thomas Patton was host for the annual STLCOP Faculty and Staff Recognition Luncheon. At the luncheon, three employees were honored for going above and beyond the expectations of their position. Amy Tiemeier,
|Amy Tiemeier, Anne Brackett, and Ibrahim Kojic|
“I enjoy my job, and I like doing the best I can for students and faculty,” says Kojic, who has been with the College for seven years. “Winning the award reminds me that everyone appreciates the efforts I put into my job.” Brackett, who also is an advisor for two student organizations, says she enjoys going the extra step for the students because she gets as much back as she puts in. “It’s very satisfying to see students grow and develop during their time at STLCOP. I know that most students don’t even realize the impact we have on their lives until years later, but I can see a difference and know, at least to some degree, how different their lives are because of what we do here.“
Nicole Gattas, Pharm.D., BCPS, and assistant professor of Pharmacy Practice at STLCOP, was recently awarded the American Pharmacists Association’s (APhA) Academy of Pharmacy Practice and Management Distinguished
|Dr. Gattas (left) accepts her award from Marialice Bennett, 2007-2009 APhA-APPM president.|
“People are usually nominated without their knowledge, so it was a great surprise and honor when I was named the recipient.” Dr. Gattas says. “A lot of great people have inspired me to do what I do in my career, including my mentors, patients, and students. My mentors have taught me that the best way to make improvements in pharmacy is to be actively involved in it. My students help me stay creative and excited about the profession. Also, helping improve patients’ lives is a huge motivating and inspiring factor in my work. When I help a patient by giving them a vaccine or explaining how a medication works, it is a great accomplishment. ”
At STLCOP, Dr. Gattas teaches community pharmacy topics such as self-care, immunizations, and medication therapy management, and she coordinates the APhA immunization certificate program. In addition, Dr. Gattas is a member of several pharmacy associations, is on the St. Louis American Diabetes Association community leadership board, and serves as an APhA-ASP chapter advisor.
On May 16, St. Louis College of Pharmacy presented 149 Doctor of Pharmacy degrees to the Class of 2009. Despite a
Kevin Colgan ‘77, president, American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, addressed the graduating class during commencement. “When I graduated in 1977, there were only a few choices of jobs. You could go into pharmaceutical sales as a sales rep. You could work at a retail pharmacy. You could work in a hospital pharmacy. You could teach – go into academia,” Colgan says. “Today, there are probably 80 to 90 different positions for pharmacists in the health care field. Today’s graduates are equipped to fulfill numerous needs in health care.” The top employers of STLCOP’s recent graduates were chain pharmacies, hospitals, and independent pharmacies.
May 1 marked Lambda Chi Alpha’s Pi Lambda Zeta chapter’s 2nd Watermelon Bash at St. Louis College of Pharmacy.
The Watermelon Bash is held as part of a large-scale North American Food Drive that Lambda Chi Alpha chapters across the nation put on each year. “This event was more successful than the brothers of Lambda Chi could ever have asked it to be,” says Tyler Dinkelaker, vice president of the Pi Lambda Zeta chapter. “We raised more than 15,000 pounds of food for the Arnold Food Pantry this semester, with a large part of the donation coming from the bash philanthropy.”
The chapter plans to host another food drive in November to further benefit the fraternity’s nation-wide food drive.
Three STLCOP students have been selected to be among 22 predoctoral students from various health professions to
|Andrea Basso, Eric Venker, and Kelli Fitterling|
The students applied to the program under the guidance of Dr. Terry Seaton, a Pharmacy Practice professor, because of their interest in research. “After working in a community pharmacy and finding it wasn’t for me, I realized there is an entire field (of pharmacy) devoted to uncertainty and discovering answers—which greatly interests me,” Fitterling says. Venker hopes that he will be able to use what he learns in the program to push the borders of his impact as a health care provider. “Research is an integral part of health care advancement,” Venker says. “Every disease state we learn about that has a clear-cut therapeutic regimen was at one point misunderstood, misdiagnosed, and perhaps even mistreated. Myriad afflictions still exist that need that conversion to take place; research is the arena in which that conversion will occur, and I am hopeful to play my part in the process.”
On Thursday, May 7, from 5:30 to 7 a.m., St. Louis College of Pharmacy faculty and alumni will participate in St. Louis' KSDK’s (Channel 5) telephone bank and Web chat for an “Ask the Pharmacist” segment. The segment will air throughout the morning show, “Today in St. Louis.” STLCOP participants will field questions via the Web and take calls from St. Louisans concerning medication safety, medication usage, and the safe disposal of medication. They also will answer questions related to health issues. Call in at 314-969-8655, or log on to ksdk.com to ask you questions Thursday morning!
On April 23 around 30 STLCOP students, staff, and faculty members joined hundreds in St. Louis’ Kiener Plaza for the
|Alicia Litteken, first-year student, and her mom, Jane.|
Organizers planned the walk as a fundraiser and awareness event for the St. Louis area, but some walkers on STLCOP’s team were already aware of the disease. Alicia Litteken, first-year student, decided to participate in honor of her friend’s mom, who has had active MS for a number of years. Litteken’s mom joined her in the walk and helped her raise money through doctors and drug reps that she works with. “My friend’s mom struggles every day, and we felt that getting involved with the society’s main fundraising event was a good way to honor her struggles,” Litteken says. The STLCOP team raised nearly $900, which will help fund research for multiple sclerosis and help those who currently suffer from multiple sclerosis lead fulfilling lives.
On Thursday, April 16 St. Louis College of Pharmacy held the second St. Louis Forum on Medication Safety on the College’s campus. As a dedicated leader in improving the safe production, distribution, and use of pharmaceuticals in
|Congressman Russ Carnahan|
The speakers touched on a variety of topics surrounding medication safety including how to improve medication labeling, patient education, and in-pharmacy tracking systems to better monitor patient stats and prescriptions. The speakers emphasized that pharmacists can be the leaders in these patient-centered improvement plans. “When pharmacists routinely interact with patients, monitor their progress, and coach them on taking medications, everybody wins,” says Lucinda Maine, Ph.D., R.Ph., executive vice president, American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy. Andrew Pleasant, Ph.D., co-author of Advancing Health Literacy: A Framework for Understanding and Action, stressed the importance of pharmacists raising patients’ understanding of health literacy, which he believes can strengthen the connection between the heath care system and the public.
The underlying message, however, was that the overall delivery system needed to be reworked. “Regulators always think that someone has to be blamed for medication errors when in actuality it is rarely any one person’s fault for the error- it is the system. To reduce errors, the focus needs to be on the multiple underlying systems that cause the errors instead,” says Donna Horn, R.Ph., Institute for Safe Medication Practices.
Twenty-four STLCOP students attended the American Pharmacists Association annual conference April 3-7 in San Antonio, Texas. At the meeting, the STLCOP APhA-ASP chapter was awarded a $2,000 grant to implement a medication adherence project. Students Davin Patel, Evan Schnur, Jessica Kassing, Kathleen Buechter, and faculty member Dr.
|STLCOP students, faculty, and alumni at the APhA conference|
The project, titled”Project ACTION: Adherence Can Turn Into Outcomes Now,” included three parts. The first part involves sixth-year students providing medication therapy management services at Grace Hill in St.Louis, so under- and uninsured patients can bring their medications to the clinic to ask questions and have the medications reviewed by the students for potential adverse reactions. The second part is antibiotic callbacks, where every two weeks, student pharmacists will follow up with patients on antibiotics to ensure they complete their prescribed dosage, so they do not develop a resistance to the drug. The third part says that STLCOP will coordinate monthly disease state management presentations with local organizations like the American Diabetes Association.
“We developed this because we want to do more to serve the underinsured,” Patel says. “We thought this would be a good opportunity for students to work with this population, and see the importance of giving back.”
On Friday, March 27 members of the Mortar and Pestle Society, the leading donor recognition society for St. Louis
|President Patton & Dr. Leonard Naeger|
Naeger, a professor of pharmacology, has been a faculty member at the College for almost 40 years. When he is not in the classroom, Naeger can be found helping out in his brother’s pharmacy in Perryville, Mo., or assisting in pharmacies of fellow Kappa Psi fraternity brothers throughout the metro area. Naeger says working a few days a month in a pharmacy setting helps keep him up-to-date with the profession and his students’ field experiences.
Naeger’s commitment to the profession extends beyond the College’s campus, whether he is delivering a continuing education presentation in California, attending Metro East Pharmacists Association meetings, or lecturing at a Kappa Psi national convention. However, Naeger’s deep commitment to STLCOP has become even more apparent over the past couple years. “I wanted to be able to spend more time at STLCOP, so about two years ago I quit 10 different faculty positions I held elsewhere, so I could spend more time working on things here,” Naeger says. However, Naeger is still an active member of the University of Missouri- St. Louis’ School of Optometry where he gives two-hour lectures for a pharmacology class about two to three times a month.
“Dr. Naeger was one of the original members of the Mortar and Pestle Society and since then has given graciously through his service to the College, his extensive participation in Continuing Education activities worldwide, and the vast alumni connections he has cultivated,” says President Thomas Patton. “He is a tireless supporter of the College both with his time and his resources and never seeks recognition, but it has been long due.”
Jason Wang, fourth-year student, has been appointed to the National Community Pharmacists Association’s (NCPA) Pharmacy Student Executive Committee. The NCPA represents the professional proprietary interests of independent community pharmacists. Wang’s position on the Student Executive Committee is a two-year commitment. The first year
|Jason Wang, |
As a member of these councils, Wang will attend planning and legislative conferences in Washington D.C., and annual conventions and steering committee meetings throughout the United States. During his first year on the SRC, Wang will work with other members to determine and execute two annual projects that will “enhance membership, community service, legislative action, or independent pharmacy promotion for NCPA chapters across the nation,” according to the NCPA. “I am really looking forward to traveling, meeting new people, and gathering fresh, innovative ideas to bring back to STLCOP as well as give my ideas out to respective learning institutions to create an overall synergy of promoting pharmacy,” he says.
Wang also plans to use this experience to help shape his future. “I hope to learn about what it takes to one day own my own pharmacy and meet business contacts who can help me reach that goal,” he says. “From my experience with independent pharmacists, one piece of advice that seems to repeat itself is to learn from someone who already knows the business, so you don’t repeat their mistakes, and learn what keeps their pharmacies alive and well.”
In addition to leading two of the nation’s largest and most prominent pharmacy associations, Judith Beizer and Kevin Colgan have something else in common. They both graduated from the same college – St. Louis College of Pharmacy.
Beizer ‘80 is president of the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists (ASCP), and Colgan ‘77 is president of the
|Beizer '80||Colgan '77|
Both association presidents said STLCOP contributed to their professional success and rise to leadership positions. “It’s a testament to the tremendous job the College does in educating its students,” Colgan said. Beizer, who is also a clinical pharmacy professor at St. Johns University in New York, said her commitment to ASCP is the direct result of learning about the importance and purpose of professional organizations while at STLCOP; as a first-year student, she joined the American Pharmaceutical Association (APhA). “We were automatically enrolled as members as APhA, the membership dues were automatically included in our tuition,” Beizer said. “That exposure helped me understand how important it is to not only be a member, but also be involved.”
Recently, she visited STLCOP and discussed numerous ASCP initiatives. “Pharmacy organizations are important for a couple of reasons – policy and advocacy. They are our voice in Washington and in state legislatures,” Beizer said. “They are also sources for education and provide resources for practitioners to get their continuing education.”
Colgan agrees and has even coined a term to define the role and value of such organizations. He calls it the “Five C’s” – contemporary thinking; continual professional development and education; community; connectivity; and collective voice.
Unlike Beizer, he didn’t become involved with an organization until his fifth and final year at STLCOP. But once he did, Colgan “got hooked.” One of his preceptors, Neil Schmidt ‘73, and a former professor, extended an invitation. Colgan accepted – mainly for the purpose of enhancing his level of professionalism prior to graduating.“I got involved as a result of my rotations during my last year,” he said. “I was invited to the St. Louis Society of Hospital Pharmacists meeting, and I got hooked.”
On May 16, Colgan, now senior vice president of health economics and outcomes research at EPI-Q in Oak Brook, Ill., will serve as STLCOP’s commencement speaker.
STLCOP Students Entertain Diabetic Kids at JDRF Retreat
The weekend of February 28, STLCOP students volunteered at the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation’s Family Retreat. The retreat offered education, support, and encouragement to families touched by diabetes. While parents and adult members of nearly 250 families attended lectures and discussions centered on the disease, STLCOP students kept their children entertained. “We played with the kids and helped them color and make crafts,” says Zenia George, a first-year student. “I was working with the younger children, so I also had to make sure that they weren't getting low on sugar.”
The student volunteers were members of the College's Student Pharmacist Association Operation Diabetes group, which often works with the JDRF.
STLCOP’s Alpha Zeta chapter of Lambda Kappa Sigma (LKS) took its recent charity project to new heights when
|Lauren Gilbert, fourth-year student, on her final flight|
To participate in Master the Met, each climber had to raise a minimum of $100 for the American Lung Association. LKS’s team members surpassed the requirement, and its eight-member team raised $1,480. The team consisted of seven LKS members and one LKS “little brother.” Lauren Gilbert, fourth-year student, and LKS’s committee chairperson, chose the event for her fraternity. “We try to stay active in the community by doing frequent charity events,” she says. “Over winter break I stumbled across Master the Met online, and since the American Lung Association puts it on, I thought it would be a great way to tie together our community and health care.”
While the LKS team holds many great memories from the event, the members agree the best part was crossing the finish line. “Looking back, I would say it was easier than expected, but I might have disagreed with that if someone had asked me around floor 30!” Gilbert says. LKS plans to participate in the climb again next year and extend the invite to all STLCOP students.
On February 24 Judith Beizer ‘80, president of the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists (ASCP), returned to her alma mater, St. Louis College of Pharmacy, to discuss with current students the opportunities, concerns and policy
During her visit, Beizer spoke of the efforts to curtail the shortage of geriatric-trained health care professionals; funding initiatives for educational centers that promote safe medication usage; and Campaign 2011, a multifaceted initiative designed to raise awareness of the prevalence of medication-related problems among the elderly, promoted the benefits of pharmacist-led Medication Therapy Management, and increase the number of pharmacists with expertise in managing the specialized pharmaceutical needs of senior citizens. Beizer says a health care professional’s understanding of all these things can save patients from suffering from adverse effects as well as health care dollars.
A men’s basketball team win at home on February 13 concluded another successful STLCOP Homecoming Week.
During Homecoming week Student Council members raised money through event entry fees, and T-shirt and pizza sales to benefit Friends of Marvell House. “Friends of Marvell House provides childcare for the parents of autistic children who work odd hours, like the second or third shifts,” says Laine Rapp, third-year student and president of Student Council. STLCOP raised more than $2,100 for the beneficiary. “This year we chose Marvell House not only because it is a great cause, but it was founded by one of our own STLCOP security guards,” says Jessica Kassing, third-year student and Student Council secretary. “Not only does this donation impact the community but also our STLCOP family.”
After 15 years with St. Louis College of Pharmacy, President Thomas F. Patton has announced he will step down,
In spring 2007, Patton signed a contract extension that runs through June 2010. This week he informed the College community that he intends to fulfill that contract but not seek an extension. “This was an emotional decision for me,” Patton says. “I love the College, and I love what I do. But, the timing was right both personally and for the College. There are numerous major undertakings on the horizon – a new strategic plan, a fundraising campaign, and potential further capital improvement projects – that will require multi-year commitments. I didn’t think it was appropriate to start things I’m not going to finish. New leadership will bring fresh perspective to these undertakings.”
Under Patton’s leadership, the College’s enrollment has grown 45 percent to almost 1,200 students. The College’s endowment has grown more than five-fold from just under $17 million when he arrived to $88.7 million by the end of fiscal year 2008, partly as the result of concluding two capital campaigns; both of which exceeded their goals. Institutionally based student financial aid has grown dramatically, and the quality of the student body is one of the highest in the state and region. In addition, a $42 million capital improvement project created an inviting campus in the city’s Central West End; there were multiple building and parking improvements, including a new residence hall and cafeteria and the addition of significant green space. Also under Patton, the College was reaccredited twice, benefited from two strategic plans, and transitioned to a six-year, all-doctoral curriculum.
In recognition of Patton’s contributions and future value to the College, the board has offered him the title of president emeritus. He will commence a six-month sabbatical on July 1, 2010 and return to the College as a consultant in January 2011.
The complexity of diabetes is difficult for adults to understand, let alone children. This became apparent to K. Grace Brenner, fifth-year student and biology teaching assistant (TA). Brenner found that the books used to describe diabetes to kids at the diabetes camp she worked at last summer were somewhat lacking. So she decided to get involved and sought the assistance of Dr. Becker’s biology class, of which she was a TA. Brenner led the class in creating children’s books about type 1 diabetes.
With less than a week to complete a storyline and supporting illustrations, the students tapped into their creative abilities to develop a simple story to explain the complex disease. “It was difficult to first come up with an analogy children could relate to,” says Alexis Byline, first-year student. “But once we got to brainstorming, all sorts of themes came to mind such as cops and robbers, superheroes, and even science fiction.”
The class created twenty-one books, which were graded by the TAs and judged by Dr. Dayton Ford, associate professor of biology, and his daughter, Jasmine, who is diabetic. Ford and his daughter chose the two books that Brenner would take back to camp with her this summer. Two groups of first-year students created the two books chosen, “Cookies in the Body” and “The Real Autoimmune Story.” The class plans to submit all of the books to the American Diabetes Association, so they can reach even more young people who deal with diabetes.
"Be the Best" Speaker Harvey Alston Visits Campus
As part of a multicultural speaker series at St. Louis College of Pharmacy, Harvey Alston, former educator and coach, came to campus on Wednesday, Feb. 20, to present his “Be the Best” message to students and faculty.
A full-time speaker since 1989, Alston’s program stressed his message of “solitary achievement, shared accomplishment, and the dignity of human beings.” Alston ended his program by reminding the students “We need to be the best at what we do.”
More information on Alston can found at www.harveyalston.com.
Homecoming Week Activities Raise Funds for Ronald McDonald House
Last week, St. Louis College of Pharmacy students, faculty and staff showed their school pride during the annual Homecoming festivities. “Being a professional school, a lot of the emphasis here is on class work,” says Patrick Harper, Student Council president and fourth-year student. “The College strives for students to have the complete college experience, and Homecoming is one of those classic college things.”
This year students dressed to a different theme each day and participated in special events that took place throughout the week. The annual Olympiad games, banner contest, chili cook-off, and pie-eating contest brought together six different teams as they competed for the coveted homecoming trophy and cash prizes. Homecoming T-shirt and pizza sales helped raise more than $2,500 for the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Metro St. Louis, this year’s chosen charity. The week concluded with a men’s basketball game and a night of food, drink, and games at a nearby bowling alley.
The 2008 Olympiad Homecoming Winners are:
Banner Contest: Half and Half (a freshmen residence hall team)
Pie-eating Contest: Lambda Chi Alpha
Chili Cook-off: Lambda Kappa Sigma
Olympiad Winners: Kappa Psi