PHARMACY

Students gear up for Medication Adherence Team Challenge

BY Ryan Chavis

WASHINGTON — February marks the launch of the third annual Medication Adherence Team Challenge, a month-long, intercollegiate competition among health profession student teams and faculty. The competition is coordinated by the National Consumers League, the lead organization on the national Script Your Future campaign.  

The Challenge is intended to help create solutions to raise awareness about medication adherence as a critical public health issue. This year, it will be sponsored by the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy, the National Association of Chain Drug Stores Foundation, the American Medical Association, the National Community Pharmacists Association, American Association of Colleges of Nursing and the American Pharmacists Association.

“This year’s Student Challenge is strengthened by the involvement of a diverse group of sponsors from multiple sectors of the healthcare system. One of the best hopes we have to improve America’s culture of nonadherence is to train the next generation of healthcare professionals to be proactive about engaging their patients, and that starts in the classroom through the innovation brought forward by health professions faculty,” Sally Greenberg, NCL executive director, said.

At the end of the Challenge, select schools or colleges will be nationally recognized for their efforts.

"Everyone wins when patients take their medication as prescribed to achieve optimal health outcomes," AMA president Ardis Dee Hoven, M.D., said. "As a sponsor of the challenge, the AMA is pleased to work with other healthcare professionals to improve the health of our patients and avoid unnecessary health problems."  

Over the past two Challenges, more than 3,000 future healthcare professionals counseled more than 18,000 patients and reached more than 3 million consumers in their efforts. Last year’s award recipients included: St. Louis College of Pharmacy, University of Charleston School of Pharmacy, University of the Pacific Thomas J. Long School of Pharmacy & Health Sciences, Touro University College of Pharmacy California and the University of Mississippi School of Pharmacy.

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CDC updates immunization schedule recommendations

BY Michael Johnsen

ATLANTA — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Monday published an updated "Immunization Schedule for Adults Aged 19 Years or Older, 2014," in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report

The primary updates for the 2014 schedule include adding Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) vaccine to the figures and updating information in the footnote about persons for whom Hib vaccine is recommended; adding information to the influenza vaccine footnote and contraindications table regarding the newly licensed recombinant influenza vaccine (RIV) and information about the use of RIV and inactivated influenza vaccine among persons with egg allergies; moving the footnote for pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV13) recommendations before the pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPSV23) recommendations because PCV13 should be administered first among persons for whom both vaccines are recommended; and clarifying information about the timing of the second and third doses of human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine, use of meningococcal vaccines among adults and recommendations for tetanus, diphtheria, acellular pertussis (Tdap) and tetanus and diphtheria (Td) vaccines (9–10).

Because of space limitations, many details of the full ACIP recommendations for each vaccine are not included in the schedule, and interested healthcare providers should refer to the full ACIP recommendations. In addition, changes in recommendations for specific vaccines might occur between annual updates to the adult immunization schedule. ACIP recommendations for specific vaccines are available at CDC.gov/vaccines/hcp/acip-recs/index.html.

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H-E-B to operate hospital pharmacy for Medical Center Hospital

BY Michael Johnsen

ODESSA, Texas — The Ector County Hospital District board of directors on Tuesday approved an outpatient pharmacy agreement with H-E-B that will bring a full-service pharmacy to Medical Center Hospital’s campus sometime this year, according to a report published by Odessa American

“We hope that it will help our patient care by working with patients on discharge to get their medicines before they leave the hospital and educating them on the drugs,” Tony Ruiz, COO Medical Center Health System, told OA. “So we see a tremendous benefit as far the quality of care that’s delivered.”

The 1,100-sq.-ft. pharmacy is expected to open by fall.

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