PHARMACY

NACDS president, CEO urges students to make an impact during pharmacy lecture

BY Allison Cerra

ADA, Ohio The National Association of Chain Drug Stores president and CEO Steve Anderson honored pharmacy icon Albert Sebok for his commitment to the industry during the Inaugural Sebok Pharmacy Lecture at the Ohio Northern University Rudolph H. Raabe College of Pharmacy.

Albert Sebok, a Raabe College of Pharmacy alumnus, held a distinguished career as a pharmacist and healthcare advocate. Anderson noted that the lecture connects Sebok’s legacy to the students of the pharmacy school, and encouraged the students to become advocates for pharmacy to help advance the profession. His message to the pharmacy students focused on taking time to go beyond the day-to-day activities of being a pharmacist, and seeking ways to get involved in grassroots advocacy to take a stand for better health care.

“Pharmacy will become whatever people like you envision, and its advancement will reflect the energy with which you engage,” said Anderson. “Effective consultations and wise operational decisions, stitched together over the course of decades, create an impressive career. But Albert Sebok has accomplished even more than that. His commitment to pharmacy goes far beyond talk of a distinguished career. It also defines what it means to be part of, and to advance, one’s profession.”

The annual lecture was established by alumni and friends to honor Sebok, a 1953 graduate. Additionally, Sebok was an original member of ONU’s Pharmacy Advisory Board and the founder and instructor of the college’s contemporary pharmacy practice class. He received an honorary doctorate degree from Ohio Northern in 1988.

To view Anderson’s speech, click here.

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PHARMACY

Schnucks Pharmacies offering free prenatal vitamins to expectant mothers

BY Alaric DeArment

ST. LOUIS January is National Birth Defects Prevention Month, and a Midwestern supermarket pharmacy chain is giving expectant mothers free prenatal vitamins to mark the occasion.

Schnucks Pharmacies, part of the Schnuck Markets company, will begin offering free prescription prenatal vitamins to pregnant women at its 103 stores under its Health and Wellness Program beginning Monday, Schnucks announced.

“It’s a major investment for our company, but we feel a responsibility to help where we can,” Schnucks VP pharmacy Michael Juergensmeyer said in a statement. “Due to economic considerations, many patients don’t refill prescriptions for chronic conditions, let alone take prescription prenatal vitamins for wellness care. We share doctors’ concerns and recognize the need to make good prenatal care more affordable for all.”

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FDA commissioner Hamburg salutes healthcare professionals for H1N1 efforts

BY Alaric DeArment

SILVER SPRING, Md. Healthcare professionals got a big “thank you” from the head of the Food and Drug Administration.

FDA commissioner Margaret Hamburg sent a letter to healthcare professionals thanking them for their efforts during the 2009 H1N1 influenza outbreak.

“In November, I wrote to thank you for your efforts during the 2009 H1N1 influenza outbreak and to provide information about the development and FDA approval of the H1N1 vaccines,” Hamburg wrote. “I mentioned our continuing robust efforts to monitor the safety of these vaccines and now would like to reassure you that, to date, the safety assessment is very encouraging.”

As of Dec. 30, nearly 100 million vaccines have been distributed, with 94% of adverse side effects described as “non-serious,” such as soreness, according to a Jan. 8 statement by the FDA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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