Student Pharmacists Discuss the Importance of Healthy Eating with Diabetes

SOP script your future_FB newsfeedAs we move into March the University of Charleston School of Pharmacy continues our focus on medication adherence. In fact, we are participating in a nationwide campaign called “Script Your Future.” The goal of the campaign is to encourage everyone to take their medication as prescribed. In addition, Script Your Future, targets three disease states–cardiovascular disease, respiratory disease, and diabetes. Since March is also National Nutrition Month, our students are pairing messages related to medication adherence, healthy eating, and disease management. Three of our P3 students, who are also USCOP Fellows, have some important tips for managing Diabetes through healthy eating.

Heathy EatingEvery person battling with diabetes is not the same, and because of this, there is no one-size-fits-all diet to help them control their blood sugar. However with a few skills, managing blood sugar through healthy eating isn’t that difficult. There are several tools available that can help with this, like using the Create Your Plate method from the American Diabetes Association and understanding how to correctly read nutrition labels.

There are a few easy steps to using the Create Your Plate method for healthy eating for people with diabetes. First, a dinner plate should be seen as having an imaginary line down the middle, and that one of those sides is cut in half again so that now there are three sections on the plate. The biggest section should be filled with non-starchy vegetables, like greens, carrots, beans, broccoli, etc. Then, grains and starchy foods should fill one of the smaller sections, such as potatoes, corn, green peas, rice, bread, or pasta. The other smaller section should contain lean protein, like chicken, fish, cheese, or eggs. Now that the plate is full, a serving of fruit (¾ cup of fresh fruit or ½ cup of fruit juice) and a serving of dairy, like 1 cup of milk or yogurt, should be added. Low-calorie drinks like unsweetened tea or water are great beverage choices.

While nutrition labels can seem complicated, they contain several important pieces of information for patients with diabetes when meal planning. The first thing to take note of is the serving size typically listed at the top. The nutrition information on every food label is based on the serving size, and 1 serving size may not be the entire package. For example, the serving size for most cans of soup is 1 cup while the can contains 2+ servings. The next thing listed on a nutrition label are the percent daily values (%DV) for the major nutrients in the food item. It is important to realize that these percent daily values are based on a 2,000-calorie diet, so this may not match up to the person’s meal plan.

The most important part of the nutrition label for patients with diabetes is the carbohydrates. The label will state how many carbohydrates are in each serving and then break it down into the kinds of carbohydrates present, which typically are dietary fibers and sugars. Dietary fiber is important as it isn’t digested or absorbed so it doesn’t raise the blood sugar and prevents it from rising too quickly. It also helps lower cholesterol. For patients with diabetes, a normal range of carbohydrates per meal is 45 to 60 grams so reading this section of the label is crucial.

FOOdWhile diet is extremely important for diabetes management, it is not the only area of a person’s life that should be monitored. Additionally, moderate exercise of 30 minutes a day, or 150 minutes per week, is recommended for an individual with diabetes. This in conjunction with a healthy diet should provide a healthy lifestyle that will slow the progression of diabetes. It is important to speak with your doctor personally about the best way to diet, exercise, and lose weight. Don’t forget to ask your doctor about an A1c test, daily blood sugar monitoring, cholesterol levels, and the appropriateness of a yearly influenza vaccine, eye exam, and foot exam.

Contributed by: Jeremy Arthur, Jamie Huff, and Katie Oliver, Class of 2017

Resources:

  1. “Create Your Plate.” American Diabetes Association. N.p., 19 Oct. 2015. Web. 10 Feb. 2016. <http://www.diabetes.org/food-and-fitness/food/planning-meals/create-your-plate/?referrer=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.google.com%2F&gt;.
  2. “Health Care Professionals.” Tools. N.p., 2016. Web. 10 Feb. 2016. <http://www.scriptyourfuture.org/health-care-professionals/adherence-tools/diabetes/&gt;.
  3. “Taking a Closer Look At Labels.” American Diabetes Association. N.p., 27 June 2014. Web. 10 Feb. 2016. <http://www.diabetes.org/food-and-fitness/food/what-can-i-eat/food-tips/taking-a-closer-look-at-labels.html?referrer=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.google.com%2F&gt;.

Celebrating Black History: Mary Munson Runge (1928-2014)

MMR

Special Note: During the Month of February, Black History Month, will be highlighting African Americans who have contributed significantly during the profession.

Mary Munson Runge was raised in a small town in Louisiana, where her father was a physician that owned the town’s first pharmacy.  He was one of the most successful businessmen in the town, and used his wealth to help the poor.  Runge and her father would help by covering the costs of patients who couldn’t afford their medication; these fulfilled her and her father’s passion for helping the poor and giving back to those in need.

During the 1960s, Runge worked in Oakland, California, an economically depressed region. She chose to work there because it offered possibilities to help others. It allowed her to counsel patients, reach out and educate the populations who needed it the most.  She worked part-time which allowed time for political and leadership opportunities.  Through this work Runge received widespread recognition and awards, receiving honorary doctorates of pharmacy.  She was appointed on many federal programs, such as the United States Department of Health, Education, and Welfare.

In 1979, Runge became the first woman and African Amercian to serve as the President of the American Pharmacists Association (APhA).  As president, she sought out to increase membership among woman, minority, and employee pharmacists. She also wanted to strengthen the bond between the association and the state pharmacy associations.

“The reason I was the first black and the first woman [president of APhA] is that I was the first black and the first woman to have ever run for that office.” –Mary Munson Runge

Maine, during this time, was a hostile environment for new pharmacists due to fears that established pharmacists of Maine’s APhA would stomp them out if they made progress in the organization. At the first caucus of the year, Runge declared that the new pharmacists organization needed to rise from the underground because of the decision by Maine to welcome all pharmacists, because regardless of your family history, genetic makeup, or age they all have important work to do.

“She didn’t pull any punches, and she wasn’t afraid to take on the issues, but always with a sense of humor.” –Lawrence Brown, PharmD, PhD

During her time in office, many pharmacists felt like she welcomed them to the profession and motivated them to advance their careers and leaderships. She wanted to inspire the disenfranchised, which she did in her time during and before her presidency.

References:

Collins, S. (2012, July 31). Runge devotes storied career to the disenfranchised. Retrieved September 21, 2015, from American Pharmacists Association: http://www.pharmacist.com/runge-devotes-storied-career-disenfranchised

Kappa Epsilon. (2014, January 8). Mary Munson Runge 1928-2014. Retrieved September 21, 2015, from Kappa Epsilon: Professional Pharmacy Fraternity: http://www.kappaepsilon.org/in-remembrance/mary-munson-runge-1928-2014/

Contributed by: Caleb Kennedy, P2, Class of 2018

Celebrating Black History: Dr. Charles Champion

Special Note: During the Month of February, Black History Month, will be highlighting African Americans who have contributed significantly during the profession.

Contributed by: Jenny Long, class of 2017

Charles Champion is an 85-year-old pharmacist at Champion’s Pharmacy and Herb Store in Memphis, TN. He was born in Memphis in 1930, and raised by his grandparents in nearby Greenfield, TN. Once he became an adult, he pursued a pharmacy degree at Xavier University in New Orleans in 1955.

The field of pharmacy has been greatly impacted by the work of Dr. Champion. Throughout his career as a pharmacist, he has broken many barriers such as becoming the first African-American pharmacist hired by a hospital in Memphis and the first African-American pharmacist to be hired by a chain drug store in the same city. He is known as a legend not only in the city of Memphis, but also in the pharmacy world. He has won several prestigious awards, including the Bowl of Hygeia Award for outstanding community service by a pharmacist, and the 1987 Pharmacist of the Year award. In addition, the Tennessee Pharmacists Association has awarded him a lifetime achievement award and the American Druggist magazine has named him one of the country’s 50 most influential pharmacists.

charles championDr. Champion, commonly known as the “herbal pharmacist,” is an avid believer in herbal treatments, and provides herbal products to many of his patients to treat conditions from high blood pressure to gout. He is particularly known for his “sinus cocktail” and “Minister’s Sip,” which many local pastors use to relieve hoarseness. Although he supports the use of herbal treatments, he will only do so if he feels it is safe for the patient. For instance, if a physician prescribes a medication for a certain disease state, Dr. Champion will not give a patient an herbal remedy to replace the medication.

He has extensively studied pharmacognosy and pharmaceuticals since graduating from pharmacy school. In order to stay current, he continues to regularly read journals and books on herbal medicine, compounding, and pharmacy. This enables him to provide the best care possible to his patients.

As a future pharmacist, I feel that Dr. Champion’s most admirable quality is the passion and commitment he shows to both his patients and to the field of pharmacy. Despite the fact he is aging and fighting conditions such as diabetes and fading eyesight, he still puts his patients first when he goes to work each morning. His dedication to his patients embodies what every pharmacist should strive to achieve. This dedication is what keeps patients coming back to his pharmacy year after year, many specifically requesting to be treated by him. Dr. Charles Champion is known as “the Pill-er of the Community,” but he is also a “pill-er” in the world of pharmacy to which pharmacists across the country hold in the highest regard.

References

  1. Charlier T. At 85, Charles Champion still operating iconic pharmacy and herb store. The Commercial Appeal. Memphis; 2015 Dec 27;
  2. Dr. Champion’s Bio [Internet]. [cited 2015 Jan 24]. Available from: http://www.theherbalman.com/Dr-Charles-Champion.html

Celebrating Black History: Dr. Robert D. Gibson

RDGSpecial Note: During the Month of February, Black History Month, will be highlighting African Americans who have contributed significantly during the profession.

Robert D. Gibson received the highest honor by the American Pharmacists Association in 2006, the Remington Honor Medal. This medal is awarded to those with distinguished service toward the profession of pharmacy in America. Gibson is known for his focus on advocating for equality in education as well as in the pharmacy.

He received several degrees from different universities throughout the United States and earned his Pharm.D. in 1958 from the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF).  Gibson went on to work at UCSF holding three different positions—Associate Vice Chancellor for Student Academic affairs, Associate Dean for Professional Affairs in the School of Pharmacy, and as Director of the Pharmaceutical Technology Laboratory.  In 2001, Dr. Gibson served as President of APhA. Then in 2003, he served as President of the UCSF Alumni Association.

Presently, Gibson serves as Vice President of the Pharmacists Planning Services, in the California Pharmacists Association Education Foundation as an active Board of Trustees member, and in the Marin County Pharmacists Association as a member of the Board of Directors. Other organizations in which he is a member include: the Association of Black Hospital Pharmacists, American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy, Federation Internationale Pharmaceutique, and APhA.

Not only did Gibson receive the Remington Honor Medal, but he also achieved several distinguished awards over his career. The Association of Black Hospital Pharmacists awarded him Pharmacist of the year, UCSF awarded him the Martin Luther King Award and Distinguished Alumnus, APhA awarded him the Fellow of the Academy of Pharmaceutical Research and Sciences, and he also received the Fulbright/Hayes Scholarship. Overall, not only is Dr. Gibson a Pharm.D. alumnus from UCSF, he is a distinguished advocate and admired and celebrated educator in the profession of pharmacy.

References

Photo: Pharmacy Practice News. Black History Month: African-American Pharmacists     [Internet]. 2007 February. Available from: http://www.pharmacypracticenews.com/ViewArticle.aspx?d_id=206&a_id=6657

  1. UCSF School of Pharmacy Editorial Staff. Robert Gibson: alumnus, educator, advocate [Internet]. UCSF; 2015 February 23. Available from: https://pharmacy.ucsf.edu/news/2015/02/robert-gibson-alumnus-educator-advocate
  2. Remington Honor Medal [Internet]. American Pharmacists Association; Available from: http://www.pharmacist.com/remington-honor-medal-0
  3. Robert D. Gibson Scholarship [Internet]. APhA Foundation. Available from: http://www.aphafoundation.org/gibson-scholarship-campaign

Contributed by: Kathleen Jackson, P3 Class of 2017

The Road to Pharmacist Provider Status

Contributed by: Anojinie Karunathilake, Class of 2017

P1070662Background of Pharmacy

Pharmacy practice has evolved from dispensing medications to a comprehensive clinical, consultative, educational and a more patient centered practice. The value of pharmacist services in collaborative drug therapy management is widely recognized. Pharmacists continue to hold highest ratings as the most trusted healthcare professionals in Gallup Poll. Given this recognition by patients, it is important that pharmacists continue to provide high quality patient care and increase services that are provided to patients, which can be further enhanced by pharmacists obtaining the provider status.

What is provider status?

‘Provider status’ at the federal level consists of a listing of healthcare professionals included in the Social Security Act (SSA) whose services are eligible for Medicare Part B reimbursement. These healthcare professionals include physicians, physician’s assistants, certified nurse practitioners, qualified psychologists, clinical social workers, certified nurse midwives and certified registered nurse anesthetists1.

Title XVIII of SSA that describes provider status does not recognize pharmacist services as eligible for reimbursement under Medicare.   In Medicare part B, pharmacists are omitted as listed providers which limits access to pharmacists services to Medicare beneficiaries2,3.

Legislation

HR 5924 (House of Representatives) and S. 3145 (Senate) are written to amend title XVIII of Social Security Act to provide coverage under Medicare program of pharmacist services. This act is also known as the ‘Pharmacy and Medically Underserved Areas Enhancement Act’

Role of the Pharmacist

Many Americans do not have access to primary healthcare and is expected to get worse as the Medicare enrollees are expected to grow in the future. According to Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA)- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Medically Underserved Areas/Populations (MUA/MUP) is defined as “having too few primary care providers, high infant mortality, high poverty or a high elderly population”6. Many areas in West Virginia state are considered as medically underserved areas6. Pharmacists obtaining provider status will help patients in MUA gain access to pharmacists’ services, which increase their quality of life, health outcomes and cost-effectiveness.

According to a report brief published by Institute of Medicine, there are at least 1.5 million preventable adverse drug events (ADE) that occur in the U.S. every year7. These ADE are costly for patients as well as their employers, hospitals and insurance companies. Being a trusted healthcare professional with direct access to patients, pharmacists can provide educational services to reduce incidents of ADE.

Medication adherence also is an area where a pharmacist can make a significant impact. Poor medication adherence estimated to cost around $100 billion a year in the U.S., is a reason for 33-69% of all medication-related hospital admissions8. Especially, almost 50% of patients with chronic diseases do not take their medication properly9.   By increasing pharmacist services through provider status, pharmacists can help improve patients’ medication adherence as well as disease management.

Current Situation

Many pharmacy organizations and several chain pharmacies have been instrumental in advocating for the provider status for pharmacists. Many are involved in writing letters to their representatives in Congress encouraging them to support provider status bill. Currently, a majority of U.S. House have co-sponsored H.R. 59210.

With the momentum building and many more supporters joining to advocate for H.R. 592/S. 314, hopefully pharmacists’ contributions towards healthcare teams and patient services will be recognized as an integral part of healthcare in the near future.

References

  1. APhA. Provider Status: What pharmacists need to know now. 2013. http://www.pharmacist.com/provider-status-what-pharmacists-need-know-now. Accessed January 6, 2016.
  2. ASHP. A bill to amedn title XVIII of the Social Security Act to provide for coverage under the Medicare program of pharmacist services. 2015. http://www.cqrcengage.com/ashp/app/bill/487919. Accessed January 5, 2016.
  3. O’Brien JM. How nurse practitioners obtained provider status: Lessons for pharmacists. Am J Heal Pharm. 2003;60:2301-2307. http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/464663.
  4. Congress.org. HR 592- Pharmacy and Medically Underserved Areas Enhancement Act. 2015. https://www.congress.gov/bill/114th-congress/house-bill/592/text?q={“search”:[“HR+592”]}. Accessed January 6, 2016.
  5. Congress.org. S.314 – Pharmacy and Medically Underserved Areas Enhancement Act. 2015. https://www.congress.gov/bill/114th-congress/senate-bill/314/text?q={“search”:[“S.+314”]}. Accessed January 6, 2016.
  6. HRSA DHHS. MUA Find. http://datawarehouse.hrsa.gov/tools/analyzers/muafind.aspx. Accessed February 14, 2016.
  7. Medicine I of. Preventing Medication Errors: Report Brief. 2006. https://iom.nationalacademies.org/~/media/Files/Report Files/2006/Preventing-Medication-Errors-Quality-Chasm-Series/medicationerrorsnew.pdf. Accessed January 6, 2016.
  8. Osterberg L, Blaschke T. Adherence to medication. N Engl J Med. 2005;353:487-497. doi:10.1056/NEJMra050100.
  9. APhA. Improving Patient Care. 2015. http://www.pharmacist.com/sites/default/files/files/Making the Case (2015).pdf. Accessed January 7, 2016.
  10. APhA. An Update from Tom Menighan, CEO of APhA. 2015. http://echo4.bluehornet.com/hostedemail/email.htm?CID=31858955709&ch=59FBFD48BBC77F7D250F6152F0853DFB&h=101a58de85df02e6330c32f53b58b43c&ei=7dMpdFyNK. Accessed January 7, 2016.

Celebrating Black History: Wendell T. Hill Jr. (1924-1995)

WTHJSpecial Note: During the Month of February, Black History Month, will be highlighting African Americans who have contributed significantly during the profession.

Wendell Talbot Hill Junior was born in 1924 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, but was raised in New Jersey. Hill served time in the Army during World War II. Once he returned from the war, he went on to attend Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa. Dr. Hill also attended the University of Southern California where he received his masters and doctoral degrees in pharmacy. Upon graduation, he continued to teach at the University of Southern California between the years 1950-1960. During this time, he also became the chief pharmacist at the Orange County Medical Center in California. (1)

In 1977, Hill moved across the country to Washington, D.C. and took on the position of Dean of Pharmacy at Howard’s College of Pharmacy from 1977-1994. While being the Dean of Pharmacy, Dr. Hill was famously known for assisting in establishing the pharmacy school as well as assisting in the school gaining accreditation. (2) Along with being the Dean of Students, he also held many respected positions such as the president of the American Society of Hospital Pharmacists.

Hill received many prestigious honors such as the Bowl of Hygeia from the A. H. Robbins Pharmaceutical Company. He also was awarded The A. K. Whitney Award  in 1989 from American Society of Hospital Pharmacists. (1) At the beginning of his acceptance speech he stated, “Receiving this award is the highest point of my 39-year career in pharmacy”. (3, p292) Sadly, Hill passed away on March 18, 1995 due to cancer. (1) In the year 1997 though, Drake University’s College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences posthumously presented Dr. Hill the Lawrence C. and Delores M. Weaver Medal of Honor Award. (2)

References:

  1. Wendell T. Hill Jr. Dies at 70 [Internet]. The Washington Post; 1995 March 23 [cited 2015 September 15]. Available from: http://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/local/1995/03/23/wendell-t-hill-jr-dies-at-70/1fa70690-b5bb-4120-8ad0-cf32c7655457/
  2. Katie Knorvosky. Drake to Honor Wendell T. Hill Jr. with Weaver Medal [Internet]. Drake University; 2007 April 13 [cited 2015 September 15]. Available from: http://news.drake.edu/2007/04/13/drake-to-honor-wendell-t-hill-jr-with-weaver-medal/
  3. Wendell T. Hill, Jr. Taking Charge of the Profession [Internet]. ASHP: 1989 [cited 2015 September 15]. Available from: http://www.harveywhitney.org/wp-content/uploads/pdf/1989.pdf

Contributed by: Jessica Rizzo, P3, Class of 2017

Celebrating Black History: Chauncey Ira Cooper (1906-1983)

CICSpecial Note: During the Month of February, Black History Month, will be highlighting African Americans who have contributed significantly during the profession.

Dr. Chauncey Ira Cooper was born on May 31, 1906 in St. Louis, Missouri. Dr. Cooper made a great impact on the history of pharmacy and is acknowledged as one of the most influential activists of minority pharmacists of the 20th century. His first step into the profession of pharmacy began when he completed his pharmaceutical chemist degree (PhC) at the university of Minnesota. Subsequently thereafter, Cooper became instructor at Meharry Medical College in the Department of Pharmacy. Here he made a great difference in the lives of minority students in the pharmacy profession. He energized minority students, especially the African American students. He helped them achieve their goals and pursuits of becoming future pharmacist through words of encouragement and taking the time to mentor the students. Dr. Cooper wanted the students to know that no one and nothing should hold them back from reaching their goals. He was an inspiration to African American pharmacy students at Meharry Medical College.

His efforts towards helping minority students reach academic excellence were recognized by Howard University continued at Howard University were he was was selected as the Dean of Howard University in 1941. Not only was this an outstanding and memorable honor for Dr. Cooper, but it was also a great moment in the history of pharmacy. He became the first African American to be appointed to a prestigious administrative role at a college of pharmacy in the United States. This was an especially significant moment for all minority students and professionals in the profession of pharmacy.

Several years later, Dr. Cooper came to the realization that there was a need for a pharmacy organization that was centered upon the needs of minority community.  Therefore in 1949, he became the founder and first president of the National Pharmaceutical Association (NPhA). The organization was structured to provide minority pharmacy professionals with a positive and encouraging atmosphere to share ideas, converse, and build lasting relationships/connections within the field of pharmacy. A student chapter affiliate was created based upon NPhA and it is called Student National Pharmaceutical Association (SNPhA). SNPhA is a respected and prominent organization found in American colleges of pharmacies dedicated to promote the excellence and uniformity amongst minority pharmacy students as set forth by Dr. Cooper.

Dr. Chauncey I. Cooper sadly passed away on September 20, 1983 yet his contributions made an unforgettable mark on the history of pharmacy.

References:

Chauncey I. Cooper Chapter Excellence Program. (n.d.). Retrieved September 22, 2015, from: http://snpha.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/CIC-Points-Updated-2014.pdf

Worthen, D. (2006). Chauncey Ira Cooper (1906–1983): Champion of Minority Pharmacists. Journal of the American Pharmacists Association J Am Pharm Assoc., 100-100.

Worthen, D. (2006). Chauncey Ira Cooper (1906–1983): Champion of Minority Pharmacists. Journal of the American Pharmacists Association J Am Pharm Assoc., 100-100. Figure 1.

Contributed by: Vista Khosraviani, P3, Class of 2017

Communication Skills are Essential for Pharmacists & Medication Adherence

SOP script your future_FB newsfeedPharmacy students are among the smartest people I know—hands down! Their propensity for science and math contributes to their ability to process large amounts of complex information. I am constantly impressed by the mental prowess of my students.

A scientific mind is indeed key to success in pharmacy school and in the pharmacy profession but I urge any student thinking about entering the profession to also consider the importance of communication skills—in particular, interpersonal communication skills. We all know role of the pharmacist in health care includes: medication therapy management, point of care testing, and monitoring and changing medications via collaborative practice. As the role of the pharmacist in health care increases, it will be even more important for pharmacy students to hone their communication skills.

I often remind our students at UCSOP that breaking information down into digestible pieces for patients is crucial. In fact, the average American reads at the 7th grade level (not at the pharmacy school level). It takes finesse to explain complex information related to medication and disease management in layperson’s terms (so patients and their caregivers understand). It also takes strong interpersonal communication skills to effectively manage one’s emotions and respond effectively to the emotions of one’s patients. In fact, some research has started to suggest that the higher a health care provider’s emotional intelligence, which includes relational skills, the better health outcomes for a patient.

Pharmacists can also increase medication adherence by effectively communicating with patients through medication adherence monitoring, medication reviews, and patient counseling. As we at UCSOP are engaged in the Script Your Future Challenge, a nationwide medication adherence campaign supported by the National Consumers League (www.scriptyourfuture.org), it’s important that we take time to note the importance of communication skills for pharmacy students. Developing these skills now, will help students serve their current and future patients as well as highlight the important role pharmacists play in patient care.

  • 50-60% of patients do not take their medications as prescribed
  • Lack of adherence leads to over 125,000 deaths in the U.S. each year and contributes to $290 billion dollars in health care costs
  • Almost 30% of patients stop taking their medications before their supply runs out

Imagine being someone who has the power to educate patients about the importance of adherence simply through conversation and counseling? Pharmacists do not have to imagine this because it’s what they do each and every day.

If you are a pharmacy student, consider honing your own communication skills by following these simple tips:

  • Check to make sure your non-verbal and your verbal communication match.
  • Actively listen without interrupting.
  • Express empathy by acknowledging that someone may be having a hard time
  • Ask questions about what would help the situation? What is a reasonable action a person can take given their resources and limitations?
  • Ask for feedback from faculty and preceptors regarding how you can improve your communication skills.
  • Identify your strengths and weaknesses in regard to communication and then develop three strategies that will help you overcome those weaknesses.

Enhancing your communication skills now, while in pharmacy school, could help a patient be more adherent to their medication and it may even save someone’s life.

Dr. Susan Gardner is Assistant Dean for Professional and Student Affairs at the University of Charleston School of Pharmacy.Dr. Gardner

Don’t forget to take the pledge to take your meds at: www.scriptyourfuture.org. Follow tips about medication adherence on Twitter @UCSOP.

Celebrating Black History: Leo Vinton Butts (1898-1956)

LBSpecial Note: During the Month of February, Black History Month, will be highlighting African Americans who have contributed significantly during the profession.

Born in July of 1898, Leo Vinton Butts was someone who would pave the way for many individuals. Butts was one of the first African Americans to prevail in both the fields of athletics and academics. In 1913, he enrolled in Madison High School in Wisconsin. While attending high school, he was very active participating in sports, namely basketball, track, and football. While Butts was a great athlete of each, he excelled in football, starting two full seasons on the offensive line. This feat would be far from the peak of his athletic career.

The following year in 1918, Butts joined the University of Wisconsin to play football. In only the second game of the season, he was entered into the game as a right guard. This event made him the first African American to play in a game for Wisconsin. While data is limited as to how much he played the remained of the season, it is noted that Butts’ presence was significant enough to where he travelled with the team to away games.

Aside from prevailing and exceeding in athletics, Butts also led the way with the academic side of things. While at Wisconsin, Butts also sought out a degree, that of pharmacy. In 1920, je was the first African American student to graduate from the Wisconsin School of Pharmacy. One of Butts’ most well known work is ‘The Negro in Pharmacy,” his thesis work examining the conditions and state of African American pharmacists during the early-to-mid 20th Century.

After schooling, Butts worked several years as a postman before he was finally able to purchase his own drug store. Butts personally operated the drug store for the remained of his lifetime up until his death.

Leo Vinton Butts played a major role in paving the way for both African American athletes and scholars, notably in the field of pharmacy. In his thesis, he explained the stature and greatness of the pharmacy school at Wisconsin, and how the profession has limited, if any ties to the African American culture. Being the first African American to graduate in the program, it is easily understood how Leo created a path for other students as well as bringing diversity into the program.

I personally am interested in Leo’s feats with regards to doubling as a scholar and an athlete. To play football and to earn a pharmacy degree are highly impressive when accomplished separately. Doing both at the same time is truly impressive.. Having competitive sports in my earlier years, and currently being in pharmacy school, I understand the amount of dedication required for each. I have copious amounts admiration and respect for the each feat from Leo, all as while he broke new ground within the profession for many more to follow.

References:

Bond, G. Leo Vinton Butts ’20. UW Health Sports Medicine.

 Black Histoy Month, African American Pharmacists. Pharmacy Practice News. Issue : February 2007 , Volume 34:02

Contributed by: Matt Montavan, P3, Class of 2017