Script Your Future Goes Red at Macy’s

Script Your FutureOn February 3rd, UCSOP students and faculty members held a community outreach event by the local Macy’s store in the Charleston Town Center Mall. This event served as an opportunity for our students and faculty to educate the public about medication adherence and cardiovascular health while promoting Script Your Future and the Go Red For Women Campaign.

SNPhA and ACCP spear-headed this event along with numerous other student volunteers to reach out to the Charleston community. Posters about cardiovascular health, risk factors for heart disease, knowing the signs of a stroke, and smoking cessation were all made available to the public. Our students were available to provide education, resources, and answer questions about these materials as well. Students also provided free blood pressure screenings and raffles to those who stopped by the booths! Overall, this event was a huge success and a fun way for our students to engage our local community in taking the right steps to heart-healthy living.

UCSOP students and faculty at the Charleston Town Center Mall Macy's hosting a Script Your Future event

UCSOP students and faculty at the Charleston Town Center Mall Macy’s hosting a Script Your Future event

Dr. Kristy Lucas, Ms. Jane Condee, and Ms. Barbara Smith

 

 

Cycling Event Held at UC to Promote Cardiovascular Health

Contributed by Brandon Gray, Class of 2019

Cardiovascular health is an extremely important component of leading a long, enjoyable life. Unfortunately, West Virginia has been inadequate in this category for several years. For example, West Virginia is the third highest state in the country in terms of “Fair and Poor Health Status”, “Physical Inactivity”, and “Obesity” (1). Individuals who do not take care of his/her cardiovascular health can develop cardiovascular disease, which is commonly known as heart disease. When looking at gender, it was shown that heart disease was the cause of death in 22.8% of males and 22.2% of females in 2011(2). However, this can easily be prevented by leading a healthy lifestyle, and managing cardiovascular health risks consistently and effectively. Conditions that can lead to heart disease include: atherosclerosis (plaque build-up on the artery walls), heart failure (when the heart is unable to efficiently pump blood to the entire body), and narrowing of the heart valves causing blood flow to be restricted. Keeping a healthy heart will increase one’s life expectancy as well as increase their quality of life.

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Cyclers on UC’s campus!

The UCSOP Student Chapter of The American College of Clinical Pharmacy (ACCP) held a cycling event to educate the public about the importance of cardiovascular health. Cycling has been shown to bring countless benefits to an individuals heart health, as well as overall health including: strengthening the heart muscles, strengthening bones and muscles, lowering the resting pulse, reducing blood fat levels, reducing body weight, decreasing blood pressure, increasing good cholesterol (HDL), decreasing bad cholesterol (LDL), reducing stress and anxiety, improving mood, etc (3). This event was a great opportunity to show the community how critical it is to have a healthy heart, and what benefits come with cardiovascular health. The cycling event had a wonderful turn out. Several members of the University of Charleston campus and Charleston community attended the event to spread awareness of heart disease and the several life-threatening problems that are associated with it. Every individual that came out and expressed their support and concern, will now be able to educate others about heart disease and how/why it is a growing tragedy in West Virginia. The goal of this event was to educate others on how heart disease can be improved and/or prevented with fun physical activities such as cycling.

References

  1. Fast Facts. (2016). wv.gov. Retrieved 17 October 2016, from http://www.dhhr.wv.gov/hpcd/data_reports/Pages/Fast-Facts.aspx
  2. Frequently Requested Statistics. (2016). org. Retrieved 17 October 2016, from http://www.wvdhhr.org/bph/hsc/Statserv/Stat_Triv.asp
  3. Health Benefits of Cycling | Organic Facts. (2013). Organic Facts. Retrieved 17 October 2016, from https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/other/health-benefits-of-cycling.html
  4. Myers, J. (2003). Exercise and Cardiovascular Health. Circulation, 107(1), e2-e5. Retrieved from http://circ.ahajournals.org/content/107/1/e2

AAPS & NCPA Host Health Fair for American Pharmacists Month

On October 29th, 2016 the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (AAPS) along with the National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA) chapters at UCSOP hosted a diabetes health fair at Fruth Pharmacy on Oakwood Road. This diabetes health fair was one of many events put together by the various organizations at UCSOP in honor of American Pharmacists’ Month.

While AAPS’s vision focuses on the development of products and therapies through research, a major part of their mission is to bring together all individuals involved in the pharmaceutical sciences in order to best serve patients. We saw this health fair as an opportunity to do just that. We were able to collaborate with students from other organizations that focus specifically on community pharmacy, but with whom we still share the ultimate goal of patient service.

“Through this health fair, we were able to embrace and exemplify the idea that while there are many facets and specialties within the field of pharmacy, we are all dedicated to the education and treatment of patients.”

At this event, AAPS and NCPA provided free blood glucose and blood pressure screenings to individuals in the Fruth Pharmacy store. Approximately 15 UCSOP students volunteered for this event between the two organizations. This event served as a great opportunity for P2 students to practice their newly-learned blood glucose and blood pressure monitoring skills on actual patients. P3s were able to use this an opportunity to interpret scores, as learned in our pharmacotherapy II class, and explain to patients their results.

AAPS & NCPA Students at Fruth at Oakwood Road's store hosting their health fair!

AAPS & NCPA Students at Fruth Pharmacy at Oakwood hosting their health fair!

During this health fair, we were able to serve approximately 30 patients. Many of these patients were highly engaged in their own health; they knew what medications they were taking and knew what their normal values were. These patients appreciated the opportunity to quickly test their blood pressure and blood glucose to make sure they were reaching their goals. However, we also interacted with patients who had very little knowledge of blood glucose and blood pressure screenings. With these patients, we had the chance to educate them on why each test was important and explain consequences of high readings. There were also patients who understood the screening methods and knew they were diagnosed with diabetes, but did not seem to take their diagnoses seriously. These patients mentioned having family histories of diabetes and seemed to think that it was inevitable that they too develop diabetes. For these patients, we stressed the importance of taking medications as prescribed and regularly checking their blood glucose and blood pressure.

This health fair served as an opportunity to reach out to the Charleston community. Through this event, we were able to educate members of our community, bring attention to our school of pharmacy, and promote the profession of pharmacy. AAPS and NCPA, two organizations that may not seem to be associated, were able work together and support one another.

Contributed by: Suyasha Pradhan, AAPS Vice-President, Class of 2018

APhA – American Pharmacists Association

During the month of April, UCSOP will be featuring our many student organizations. At UCSOP, we believe that co-curricular experiences (outside the classroom) allow our students to practice their pharmacy skills and serve our communities. 100% of our student body is a member of at least one organization and our students participate in over 25 community health fairs each year serving over 5,000 patients. 

The American Pharmacists Association (APhA) national organization was founded in 1852. With 62,000 presently active members, it is now the largest association of pharmacists in the United States. Members of this organization include practicing pharmacists, student pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, and pharmaceutical scientists. The University of Charleston School of Pharmacy is very fortunate to have a local chapter of this widespread national organization.

P3s LaTasha Marshall and Beverly Okoroji, P2 Rafi Saadallah, and P4 Melanie Richmond present a poster for APhA's Operation Heart.

P3s LaTasha Marshall and Beverly Okoroji, P2 Rafi Saadallah, and P4 Melanie Richmond present a poster for APhA’s Operation Heart.

Locally, our APhA-ASP chapter at the University of Charleston School of Pharmacy has over 100 student pharmacist members. Coincidently, it is also the largest student organization within the school of pharmacy. Having a lot of active members allows the organization to cover many different areas within the pharmacy field. One of our busiest and most exciting campaigns takes place annually in the month of October. Nationally, October is recognized as American Pharmacists Month. During this time, we as an organization sell American Pharmacists Month apparel, advocate publicly for the profession, and show our appreciation for the pharmacists and faculty that educate and prepare us for our future career.

Our APhA-ASP organization hosts an annual patient counseling competition. During this event, student pharmacists counsel a mock patient on a specific medication, and then UCSOP faculty judge each patient interaction and determine a winner. This exciting opportunity allows pharmacy students to have an authentic, valuable experience with professional feedback in a non-threatening environment. The winner also receives a paid trip to attend the APhA annual meeting in the spring, which is in Baltimore, MD this year. This is just one of many “perks” available to APhA-ASP members at the University of Charleston.

Within our chapter, we have many sub-committees that target different areas within the large umbrella of pharmacy. Operation Self Care, for example, educates students, pharmacists, and the general public on the significance of using over the counter medications safely and effectively. Similarly, GenerationRx provides information on prescription drug abuse, and the importance of taking the proper medication as prescribed. Other committees include Operation Immunization, Operation Diabetes, and Operation Heart

As with many major disease states, pharmacists can play an imperative role in preventing and managing cardiovascular disease. In 2009, Archives of Internal Medicine published a study demonstrating that collaboration between pharmacists and physicians resulted in better hypertension (high blood pressure) control. In 2014, 84 of the student chapters of APhA-ASP incorporated Operation Heart committees into their chapters, and we are hopeful that participation will continue to grow. Being the public’s most accessible health care provider, we as students and pharmacists should make an effort to educate our patients and advocate for our profession.

Contributed by: Celine Quevillon (APhA Secretary, class of 2017) and Lindsay Tincher (APhA Self-Care Co-Chair, class of 2017)

UCSOP Class of 2018 Hosts Health Fair at Local Pharmacy

Starting this fall the Class of 2018 has set out to reinforce the vision of the University of Charleston School of Pharmacy, which is to provide optimal healthcare to patients in rural Appalachia and other areas. The Class of 2018 has met this vision this semester by hosting a health fair at the Family Life Pharmacy in Comfort, West Virginia. This pharmacy serves a very rural part of West Virginia and gave us the opportunity to touch many patients lives that may not have the means of accessing health care on a regular basis.

Throughout the day we offered blood sugar and blood pressure checks, along with general information on diseases and ways to stay healthy. We also had the privilege of a local nurse participating in the fair and giving out flu shots to any patients who wanted them. All of the patients we interacted with that day really seemed to enjoy our company and information they received.

I personally participated in this activity and by doing so I feel as though I learned some great skills that I can apply to my future in pharmacy. We all learned how to effectively deliver medical information in a way that made sense to the patients. One of the more difficult parts of the day  was adjusting to accommodate the elderly patients. All of the student pharmacists had to come up with a way to aid in patient care with those who may not hear or see as good as they used to. This can be a real challenge when trying to accurately deliver or obtain information.

In total we interacted with around sixty patients throughout the day. We are hoping to make this a routine health fair and would love to see it happen multiple times throughout the year. In the upcoming semester the Class of 2018 along with a health fair is trying to organize a golf tournament for a local charity. We not only want to touch the lives of patients by interacting with them directly, but we also want to help the organizations that aid patients with chronic diseases provide better services and also monetary support. Our hope with doing activities in our community is that we can at least make a difference in one patients life if not many. If we can make a difference in a patient’s life, then that makes everything we are doing worthwhile.

Contributed by: David Poe (President, class of 2018).Poe, David

Pharmacist Day at the WV Legislature

The University of Charleston School of Pharmacy joined Marshall University School of Pharmacy (MUSOP) and West Virginia University School of Pharmacy (WVUSOP) to help promote the profession of pharmacy and impact public health for all West Virginia residents during the 2015 Pharmacists Day at the Legislature. The event was held at the State Capitol Complex on Monday, February 23, 2015. Under the guidance of Drs. Capehart (WVUSOP), Gardner (UCSOP), Lucas (UCSOP), and Wolcott (MUPDATL PhotoSOP), over 300 pharmacy students participated to help advocate for the profession and for our patients.

In total, 31 groups of students (5-6 per group) met with delegates and senators to share the pharmacists’ role in health care delivery. Many representatives were more than willing to take time out of their busy schedules to meet with students and talk about upcoming legislation and public health concerns. Information about medication adherence was also distributed to 389 persons as part of the University of Charleston’s Script Your Future Campaign.

P3 Kyle Sargent performing a blood pressure reading as Ms. Smith counsels a patient.

P3 Kyle Sargent performing a blood pressure reading as Ms. Smith counsels a patient.

In addition to advocating for the profession, Ms. Barbara Smith, an instructor and preceptor for UCSOP, organized a blood pressure and diabetes health fair at the Capitol to help educate individuals on the importance of monitoring their blood pressure and blood glucose levels, as well as providing them with a blood pressure reading while on site. In total, 60 patients had their blood pressures and diabetes risks screened, helping to demonstrate the importance and versatility of pharmacists in a healthcare system.

Contributed by Peter Relvas UC SOP Pharmacy Student & Graduate Intern, Office of Professional and Student Affairs.

Script Your Future Continues!

The campaign with the goal of encouraging patients to take their medications reliably and responsibly is officially underway! As promised, the Script Your Future committee has delivered an impressive schedule with over 16 different events, many over the span of multiple days.

The committee is utilizing an interdisciplinary approach, and there are at least 25 pharmacy students involved, as well as many physician assistant students. This method allows members from different areas of the health care system to work and communicate together. This affords the patient a better and more unified treatment and experience. Professor Melissa Garrett, from the Physician Assistant Program, has been instrumental in organizing the PA students, while Dr. Susan Gardner, Ms. Jamie Bero, and P2 John Robinson have rallied the pharmacy students.

PA and PharmD students spreading the message about medication adherence.

PA and PharmD students spreading the message about medication adherence.

Appalachian Regional Hospital Educational Booth!

Appalachian Regional Hospital Educational Booth!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Supporting the School of Pharmacy’s Mission Statement, events have been aimed at targeting under served, rural communities. Individuals in these committees often have difficulty accessing reliable health care information and professional help. To aid in the Script Your Future initiative, the committee has helped at-risk patients receive the proper education to help ensure medication adherence is achieved.

Not only did the committee focus on rural community outreach, but also attempted to incorporate more technology into events. For various health fairs and booths, students were encouraged to bring their iPads with them to help further patient education. Patients are being asked to take a pledge on the Script Your Future website using the iPads, promising that they would continue to take their medication correctly.

Below is the schedule for the entire Script Your Future campaign:

Date Event Activity Timeframe Persons Responsible
January 20 Appalachian Regional Hospital (Beckley) Patient Education 1pm-4pm UC Pharmacy & PA Students/Professor Garrett (PA)
January 21 UC Student Involvement Fair Booth with information & computers for students to Take the Pledge 11:30am-1:30pm UC Pharmacy Students
January 22 Rural Health Day at the Legislature Booth with information & computers for attendees to Take the Pledge 9am-1pm UC Pharmacy & PA Students/Ms. Bero
January 22-February 22 Fruth Pharmacy (OH, KY, WV) Education materials in all prescription bags and all Fruth locations Coordinated by UC Pharmacy Students/Dr. Bennett
Week of January 26 (National Drug Awareness Week) Tweet-A-Thon Take the pledge and tweet us @UCSOP with #UCSYF Week-long Coordinated by UC Pharmacy & Pre-Pharmacy Students/Dr. Gardner
January 31, February 7 & 28 UC Basketball Games (Eddie King Gymnasium at UC) Booth with information & computers for attendees to Take the Pledge (raffle items) UC Pharmacy Students/Ms. Bero
January 31 Ripley Health Fair Health fair along with SYF information UC Pharmacy Student Organization
February 2 American Heart Association Day at the Legislature Booth with information & computers for attendees to Take the Pledge UC Pharmacy & PA Students/Ms. Bero
February 3 American Lung Association-Lung Force Breakfast (Embassy Suites) Booth with information & computers for attendees to Take the Pledge UC Pharmacy Students/Dr. Gardner/Dr. Easton
February 6 Go Red for Women Event at UC (Health Fair and Speaker) SYF/Medication Adherence information with patient discharge papers Health Fair in Rotunda 8:30am-12pm; speaker 12:15-1pm Erma Byrd Gallery (Riggleman Hall) UC Pharmacy & PA Students/Ms. Bero/Dr. Lucas/Ms. Smith/Professor Garrett/Dr. Gardner/Dr. Simon
February 10 Highland Hospital’s Health Education 101 (Advance Health Care at UC) Presentation on Medication Adherence followed by opportunities to Take the Pledge 6-7:30pmRoom 105 of the Pharmacy Building Dr. Gardner
January & February 2015 Hispanic Community Outreach Wallet cards to area restaurants UC Pharmacy Students/Dr. Gardner
February 23 Pharmacist Day at the Legislature Booth with resources, computers to Take the Pledge & Health Fair 9am-1pm UC Pharmacy Students/Dr. Lucas, Ms. Bero & Dr. Gardner/Ms. Smith
February 24 Ranielle Medical Center Patient Education 1pm-3pm UC Pharmacy & PA Students/Professor Garrett
January & February 2015 Ohio Obleness Health Hosptial SYF/Medication Adherence information with patient discharge papers UC Pharmacy Students
February 2015 New River Community & Technical College (new location in Beaver, WV) SYF/Medication Adherence information with patient discharge papers UC Pharmacy Students/NRCTC Nursing and Medical Assistant Students/Dr. Gardner (Crystal Pak, P2)

For more information on the events contact: Dr. Susan Gardner, Assistant Dean for Professional and Student Affairs, susangardner@ucwv.edu, 304-357-4879.

For more information about medication adherence: http://www.scriptyourfuture.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/Final-FAQ-for-About-Page.pdf

Contributed by Peter Relvas UC SOP Pharmacy Student & Graduate Intern, Office of Professional and Student Affairs.

UCSOP Promotes Diabetes Awareness

The University of Charleston School of Pharmacy is always looking to bring health awareness to its surrounding communities. Luckily, UCSOP is privileged to have students who passionately share this interest. This past week, a total of thirteen students and two faculty members reached out to six local high schools to try and make a difference in our community. Students teamed up and presented for approximately 15 minutes on a myriad of topics including obesity, diabetes, and the pharmacy school admission process.

On October 30th, P3 student, Juhee Kim presented at Charleston Catholic High School with P1 Glenda Athus and Dr. Susan Gardner, Assistant Dean of Professional and Student Affairs. “This was the first time I really got to interact with high school students who plan on going into the healthcare field. I felt like a pharmacist, educating individuals on the dangers of diseases and it was a satisfying experience to say the least,” said Kim.

Diabetes

P3 students Rend Hermiz & Al Fein role model a diabetes management discussion to students at George Washington HS in Charleston on Oct. 28 while P3 student, Jelena Radan facilitates.

Dr. Gardner, who also attended a session earlier in the week at George Washington High School, commented, “One of the things that makes our program so special is the commitment our students have to health education and community outreach.” The events are part of a month-long diabetes awareness initiative. And so, the topics of discussion at the high school sessions pharmacy school admission and UCSOP’s upcoming Diabetes Awareness Day, scheduled for November 8th. The UCSOP sponsored event consists of free cholesterol tests, blood pressure screenings, and diabetes risk tests. Pharmacy students will also share informative displays, make presentations, and offer door prizes.

Pharmacy school admission was another common topic of discussion for the high school audience, and UC campus tours will be offered during Diabetes Awareness Day on Saturday. The high school students asked questions pertaining to the different roles of pharmacists and the future of the profession. Current pharmacy students and Dr. Gardner were more than happy to answer questions and help outline the journey to becoming a pharmacy student, and ultimately, a pharmacist.

Community outreach programs, like those mentioned above, help pharmacy students develop their communication, clinical, and leadership skills, while helping local residents live healthier lives. UCSOP’s ability to offer such opportunities makes it a great choice for students looking to give back to their communities and help advocate good healthcare. Stay tuned for more updates on how UCSOP and its dedicated pharmacy students continue to make a difference in their community! And, please join us on Saturday for during our Diabetes Awareness Day!

Diabets2

 

Contributed by, Peter Relvas, UCSOP P3 student and Graduate Intern in the Office of Professional and Student Affairs.