130 posts categorized "Pharmacy Practice"

09/30/2015

Alum's Pharmacy Nationally Recognized for its Service to Community

HealthMart_Tepper_093015Pharmacy alumnus Craig Lehrman P’89, a second-generation pharmacist who learned the business from his father, was recently honored for consistently providing care and services that add measurable value to patient healthcare and community wellness. His independently-owned Tepper Pharmacy, located in Wynnewood, Pa., is one of 10 pharmacies across the country to receive the Health Mart Community Healthcare Excellence Award.

After graduating from Philadelphia College of Pharmacy in 1989, Lehrman gained most of his pharmacy experience working for others before he achieved his goal of owning a pharmacy in 2011. Over the past four years, Lehrman and his staff have continued to build upon Tepper Pharmacy’s rich 30-year history of delivering personalized care to the community.

“I was interested in the business aspect of pharmacy, but it was my father that guided me into the profession of pharmacy,” he said. “I was looking for a store to buy and even considered opening a new store from scratch, until the perfect opportunity arose to take over Tepper Pharmacy.”

In this new era of chain pharmacies and mail order prescriptions, one of the hallmarks of independent pharmacies, like Tepper, is their ability to understand and cater to the unique needs of their community.

“I want the service that we provide to make us unique,” Lehrman said. “The personal interactions we have with our customers is what makes us stand out and it is an important part of what makes Tepper Pharmacy a successful business.”

Beyond the traditional services most pharmacies offer, Tepper Pharmacy’s staff includes an employee who specializes in fittings for compression stockings and sleeves and is also an expert in durable medical equipment and wound care, a pharmacist who specializes in managing the medications for long-term care facilities in the area, and a pharmacy team that services local dialysis centers.

To help the community stay healthy, Tepper Pharmacy administers vaccinations, offers free delivery anywhere in the Philadelphia metropolitan area, and makes every attempt to fill all prescriptions by stocking a large inventory. These specialized and personalized services are just a few examples that exemplify the concern Lehrman and his pharmacy staff have for the community.

The Health Mart Community Healthcare Excellence Award program is a component of the Health Mart Healthy Living Tour, which is on the road to celebrate and recognize community pharmacists for the important role they play as trusted healthcare providers in their communities—helping to educate and counsel on a variety of conditions that can be better managed with the help of a pharmacist.  

“Health Mart pharmacies fill a gap in today’s busy healthcare system by providing broader access to clinical services and medication counseling, and our pharmacists often serve as the first point of care for everyone from new parents to grandparents,” said Chuck Wilson, vice president of Health Mart. “We recognize that issues like diabetes and obesity are serious epidemic affecting millions of Americans, and these 10 pharmacists have proven themselves as go-to resources for those in their community managing these diseases.”

Pharmacy Prof Says Some Patients with A-Fib Should Be Prescribed a New Drug

Atrial Fibrillation, commonly referred to as "a-fib,” has become recognized as a cardiac health concern that in many cases can lead to stroke and death. There are currently nearly 3 million cases in the United States—and, by 2050, it is projected that more than 7.5 million people will have a-fib.

With so many Americans living with this condition, Dr. Sarah Spinler, a clinical pharmacy professor at University of the Sciences, believes that some patients with a-fib should be prescribed a new oral anticoagulant drug instead of warfarin—a blood thinner also known by its brand name Coumadin.

Earlier this year, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved edoxaban, a new oral anticoagulant manufactured by Daiichi Sankyo. The drug is marketed under the brand name Savaysa and joins three other new drugs in the new oral anticoagulant marketplace:  dabigatran (Pradaxa) from Boehringer Ingelheim, rivaroxaban (Xarelto) from Johnson & Johnson, and apixaban (Eliquis) from Pfizer and Bristol-Myers Squibb.

All four drugs were designed to overcome the limitations of warfarin, which has long been available as an inexpensive generic drug but which requires extensive monitoring and dose adjustment and has numerous interactions with other drugs and foods.

As the mainstay a-fib treatment, Dr. Spinler said warfarin has proven to be a highly effective therapy, but it does have several limitations, including dietary effects, drug-drug interactions, and a need for regular international normalized ratio monitoring.

READ: Pharmacy Times: Choosing an Anticoagulant for Afib ft. Dr. Sarah Spinler

“Patients with well-managed warfarin treatment may not see a big benefit when switching to a new oral anticoagulant drug,” said Dr. Spinler. “However, patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation who are unable to maintain a therapeutic international normalized ratio level with warfarin should be prescribed a drug such as dabigatran, apixaban, and rivaroxaban.”

Reduced doses of new oral anticoagulant drugs may also be appropriate for patients with nonvalvular a-fib and moderate to severe chronic kidney disease with CHA2DS2-VASc scores of 2 or greater (this score calculates stroke risk for patients with a-fib). These new drugs also tend to require fewer dosing changes, Dr. Spinler added.

09/29/2015

PCP Student Provided First Aid During Papal Weekend in Philly

Joellen2After a successful Papal weekend in Philadelphia, the medical tents are down and volunteers, like student-pharmacist Joellen Friedman PharmD’16, are back to their routine schedules. Friedman spent the eventful weekend as a first-aid volunteer with the Philadelphia Medical Reserve Corps.

“Our first-aid tent was one of the more active ones in the city, and we took care of several patients who experienced minor scrapes and blisters, falls and fainting, and asthma exacerbations,” said Friedman.  “As a pharmacy student, I was able to use my skills to take patient medical histories and talk to our clinicians about the care we were providing.”

Over the weekend, 10 medical tents were set up around the city staffed by volunteers with the American Red Cross, Philadelphia Fire Department/EMT, Philadelphia Department of Health, and other local EMS squads. Six smaller stations were designed to treat problems like blisters or mild dehydration, while four larger medical tents were set up to take care of patients with more serious problems, like fainting.

During her 12-hour shifts on Saturday and Sunday, Friedman served as her team’s volunteer shift coordinator, which put her in charge of managing the patient record system, keeping track of attendance, and communicating with supervisors at the other first aid and medical tents in the city.

Friedman said she has a passion for using her pharmacy education to help others, and recently completed an interprofessional medical mission trip in Jamaica to provide essential medical services to Jamaicans in critical need of quality medical and dental care, health awareness education, and pediatric care.

09/21/2015

USciences Holds PT, PCP White Coat Ceremonies in September

PCPCoat15Philadelphia College of Pharmacy recently held its annual White Coat Ceremony for nearly 160 student-pharmacists on Sept. 19. Each year, this ceremony is a significant and meaningful tradition that symbolizes the students' commitment to the profession of pharmacy and the professionalism that is expected of students within the College of Pharmacy and in their eventual practice.

During the ceremony, the students were asked to recite an oath in which they pledge their professionalism and commitment to clinical care and service.

Click here to see the PCP White Coat Ceremony photo gallery.

Similarly, more than 75 doctor of physical therapy students joined the ranks of professionals following the 11th annual White Coat Ceremony on Sunday, Sept. 12. White coat gifting at the ceremony was presented by Physical Therapy Department Chair Dr. Marc Campolo, and Interim Dean of Samson College of Health Sciences Dr. Michelle Cohen.

Donning their white coats, the students also recited the Oath of a Physical Therapist, a gesture to reinforce their commitment to working with patients compassionately and to enhancing their health and well-being.

Click here to see the DPT White Coat Ceremony photo gallery.

These ceremonies are an annual rite of passage for fourth-year students in the University’s six-year PharmD and DPT programs, who have begun the clinical education portion of their education and will now receive hands-on training through part-time and full-time clinical education experiences.

08/19/2015

PCP Students Provide Faith-Based Healthcare to Underserved Philly Residents

SMI_20151Five students from Philadelphia College of Pharmacy collaborated with more than two dozen medical, dental, podiatry, and nursing students from various colleges across Philadelphia during this year’s Summer Medical Institute (SMI) Philadelphia. This three-week health outreach program is sponsored by the Medical Campus Outreach ministry of Tenth Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia and Esperanza Health Center.

“Teams of health professions students helped address the health and spiritual needs of residents in the Kensington and Hunting Park neighborhoods of Philadelphia,” said Daniel Hussar, PhD, Remington Professor of Pharmacy at University of the Sciences. “This unique experience allowed students to learn how to integrate their faith with their responsibilities as health professionals.”

After initial training sessions, Sherilin Joe PharmD’16, Rebecca Shatynski PharmD’16, Julie Varughese PharmD’16, Megan Pellett PharmD’16, and Christina Besada PhSci’17 joined their peers to conduct door-to-door health outreach in teams throughout the neighborhoods—offering diabetes and blood pressure screenings, as well as nutrition and healthy lifestyle education.

Students also lived together in community, and learned first-hand the impact of social, cultural, emotional, spiritual, and economic factors on individuals’ health. Through interaction with clinicians and staff members at Esperanza Health Center, Dr. Hussar said the students were able to observe an effective model of Christian primary healthcare.

Here’s a break-down of the recorded visits and activities completed by the students during SMI:

  • 630 visits to homes were conducted with health screenings provided
  • 787 blood pressure screens
    • 97 new positives for pre-hypertension were identified
    • 117 new positives for hypertension were identified
  • 756 blood sugar screens
    • 68 new positives for diabetes were identified
  • 737 BMI screens
  • 130 dental screens
  • 68 received in-home HIV testing
  • 200 people received asthma education
  • 917 people were prayed with
  • 87 people requested church follow-up

Following the conclusion of SMI, USciences students made follow-up phone calls to individuals with whom visits were made.  They also met with alumnus Neil Pitts P'73, PharmD'04 and visited the Miriam Medical Clinic that he started at Berean Baptist Church in North Philadelphia.

08/12/2015

College-Bound Students: Don’t Forget to Pack These Necessities, Says USciences Prof

Hewitt-3189Thousands of students across Greater Philadelphia will soon start the next chapter of their lives as they begin their college journeys away from home. But with their new freedom comes the exposure to millions of germs while living and studying in close quarters with others, said Stacey Gorski, PhD, assistant professor of biological sciences at University of the Sciences in Philadelphia.

“Because students share many of the same spaces and items in places such as residence halls and dining areas, many germs can spread quickly and easily,” said Dr. Gorski, who specializes in immunology. “It’s scary when you think about it, but the more you know about their risks, the better you can protect yourself.” 

So as students pack their bags with necessities like clothing, bed linens, accessories, and electronics, Dr. Gorski also encourages them to remember to pack the following items to help minimize their contact to germs:

  • Flip flops for the shower. Communal bathrooms in residence halls—thanks to their generally moist nature—are breeding grounds for germs, such as fungi, bacteria, and viruses. Shower sandals can help protect students from catching viruses that can cause warts and fungi that commonly cause athlete's foot.
  • Laundry detergent. Students are probably unaware that they are sharing their bed with bacteria, yeast, and other fungi that can lead to skin infections and respiratory issues. Regularly washing bed linens, changing pillows, and showering at night can help reduce the number of germs in a student’s bed. Students should also avoid using their beds as seating areas for guests.
  • Disinfectant wipes. Viruses like the norovirus—commonly associated with gastrointestinal disease on cruise ships, but also a rising cause for concern on college campuses—can live and potentially infect a person for up to 7 days after being deposited on a surface. That’s why it is a good idea to wipe down shared objects, such as eating areas, desks, doorknobs, and keyboards, daily with disinfectant wipes.
  • Hand sanitizer.  Although soap and water works best for killing germs, alcohol-based hand gels can work in a pinch, especially for individuals who use public transportation, or do not have access to a sink for extended periods of time.

On a more serious note, Dr. Gorski also urges college-bound students to consider getting the HPV and influenza vaccinations. Both males and females should receive the three-dose HPV vaccine to protect themselves against preventable cervical, mouth, and throat cancers. She also added that flu shots are the best way to protect students against influenza and possibly missing weeks of class due to the highly-contagious virus. 

MEDIA COVERAGE:

HealthAug. 21, 2015:
Add Germ Fighters to College Packing List

07/21/2015

Jamaican a Difference: PCP Students Complete Interprofessional Medical Mission Trip

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Left to right: Pharmacy students Joellen Friedman, Brie Kassamura, Nitin Bagga, Julian Kam, Grace Park and Monika Cios.

Pharmacy student Nitin Bagga PharmD'16 observed closely as a middle-aged Jamaican woman—with teeth rotted well into her gum line—underwent an oral exam at a free health clinic in Kingston. Until that day, the woman had no means of getting medical attention or hope that the pain would come to an end.

Stories like this highlighted all of the reasons why nearly a dozen pharmacy students and professors from University of the Sciences made the journey to Jamaica last month to participate in an interprofessional medical mission trip.

It was a mission to help others, to learn about a culture 1,500 miles from Philadelphia, to gain work experience, and to come away better people. It was a mission to give back.

“This trip was a humbling experience to say the least…seeing the poverty in different parts of the world and being able to help so many in need was extremely rewarding,” said Bagga. “Working with the different healthcare professionals on the trip has prepared me to be the best pharmacist I can be.”

Bagga was accompanied on this trip by his classmates Joellen Friedman PharmD’16, Brie Kassamura PharmD’16, Julian Kam PharmD’16, Grace Park PharmD’16, and Monika Cios PharmD’16; and pharmacy professors Drs. Shelley Otsuka, Jessica Adams, and Yvonne Phan.

The pharmacy group from USciences joined a large team of healthcare practitioners and professional students from Nova Southeastern University and Women of Health Occupation Promoting Education (H.O.P.E.) to provide essential medical services to Jamaicans in critical need of quality medical and dental care, health awareness education, and pediatric care.

By the end of the trip, the team had provided care to more than 3,000 patients at prisons, churches, schools, and hotels across rural and urban communities in Jamaica. In fact, the USciences pharmacy team filled more than 5,000 prescriptions for these patients.

The Philadelphia College of Pharmacy students had many responsibilities before, during, and after the mission trip, said Dr. Otsuka. They prepared for the trip by updating the medication guide-use tools, reviewing the medication formulary, developing patient education pamphlets, creating a continuing medical education presentation handout, and constructing a research project that included a protocol. In addition, they held disease-state topic discussions with their instructors to help review treatment guidelines.

MissionTrip
Joellen Friedman PharmD’16 provides patient counseling to a mother and her young daughter.

The students also collected donations from pharmaceutical companies, alumni, and local businesses, such as SunRay Drugs and ACME Savon Pharmacies. As a result of their efforts, approximately 75 different medications were used to treat a variety of patient conditions in Jamaica. They also held fundraisers in the spring to offset their housing expenses for the trip and to raise money to purchase medical supplies, including gloves, hand sanitizer, and Ziploc bags—which functioned as the medication vial.

During the trip, the students had the opportunity to work alongside healthcare practitioners and students in the fields of medicine, physical and occupational therapy, and dentistry. They also managed a closed formulary system and maintained an accurate medication inventory system, as well as filled, compounded, and labeled medications, and counseled patients on new medications—all under the guidance of their professors.

When the students returned to Philadelphia, Dr. Otsuka said they took stock of their inventory, wrote self-reflection essays, and gathered and analyzed data for a scholarly project. She said they plan to submit an abstract and research poster for the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists' Midyear Clinical Meeting, and share their experience with peers and underclassmen this fall.

Throughout the trip, each healthcare profession interacted with pharmacy in a unique and collaborative way, said Park.

“Pharmacy was truly an equally integrative part of the healthcare system and care of the patient,” Park said. “Being able to be a part of that and see it occur in one room was an unforgettable experience.”

CLICK HERE TO SEE A PHOTO GALLERY FROM THE TRIP

07/16/2015

Dr. Hussar's Column: Time Out!

Daniel A. Hussar is the Remington Professor of Pharmacy at University of the Sciences' Philadelphia College of Pharmacy. He serves as the author and editor of The Pharmacist Activist newsletter (http://www.pharmacistactivist.com) from which this editorial was taken.

HussarMy primary symptoms were fatigue and shortness of breath upon exertion that continued to worsen. A visit to my family physician in mid-April revealed abnormalities in my electrocardiogram (EKG) and a low hemoglobin concentration. I was referred to my cardiologist who ordered an echocardiogram and a stress test (that was very brief because of my acute shortness of breath). The results suggested probable blockage of blood vessels, a need for cardiac catheterization, and an expectation that I would need to have one or more stents inserted. My cardiologist responded to the results of the catheterization by observing that he was "thrilled but surprised." He was thrilled because the procedure did not identify any problem associated with my heart or blood vessels, but surprised because he expected otherwise. This was great news but not an explanation for my worsening symptoms, and an appointment with a hematologist was scheduled.

Several days later I experienced a minor cut while shaving with bleeding that would typically stop within seconds. However, the bleeding did not stop and continued for 10 minutes, 15 minutes. . . , and still did not stop. My wife Sue indicated that we should go to the Emergency Department of our local hospital but I did not feel that was necessary, primarily because I thought we would be viewed as over-reacting for going to the Emergency Department for a shaving cut. Fortunately, Sue's better judgment prevailed. My evaluation revealed a further reduction in the hemoglobin concentration and other hematologic abnormalities. I was admitted to the hospital and the hematologist ordered additional blood studies and a bone marrow biopsy. A diagnosis was determined – acute myeloid leukemia (AML). The hematologist informed me that the best hospital to be treated for AML was the Abramson Cancer Center (established through the generous philanthropy of healthcare management leader and pharmacist Leonard Abramson) at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania (HUP), and insisted that I be admitted the next day.

HUP

Following admission to HUP, the diagnosis of AML was quickly confirmed. A treatment "team" with extensive expertise and experience met with me and thoroughly explained the treatment plan they were recommending. I was very impressed with the approach they took in discussing the treatment they proposed. They wanted Sue and me to thoroughly understand it and to agree with it and approve it. We quickly agreed with the recommendations and I made the following observations:

I have a strong faith in God. To not agree with the proposed or another treatment plan would mean that my faith was not strong enough to believe that God could use this strategy to enable His will to be accomplished.

Although I have some knowledge about AML and the drugs used in treating it, I was fortunate to be under the care of a team of health professionals that had such extensive expertise that I had no questions about their recommendations and judgments, nor would I seek another opinion. I would note that the recommendations of the treatment team were in the context of the numerous uncertainties pertaining to the disease, patient risk factors, and the medications that make it impossible to predict treatment outcomes for an individual patient.

Induction chemotherapy was initiated that afternoon and, coupled with monitoring and the management of complications, I was hospitalized for more than 4 weeks. The ramifications of the disease and treatment resulted in much of my hospitalization being characterized by extreme fatigue and, at times, disorientation and confusion. Everything else, even reading and responding to emails, was put on hold.

Notwithstanding the inevitable challenges, I can't say enough about the excellent expertise and quality of the treatment and services provided by the health professionals, and the caring manner in which they provided them. These qualities were also exhibited by the support staff and I was impressed by how many of them had worked at HUP for many years.

Of special interest and importance to me was the fact that pharmacists, most of whom were my former students, were members of the treatment teams and had an important role in the recommendations and decisions regarding drug therapy. In my discussions with the physicians and nurses, it was a pleasure to hear how much they respected and valued the participation of the pharmacists as members of the team.

My hospitalization was anything but uneventful. In addition to the anticipated challenges presented by the disease and chemotherapy, I experienced unexpected events including a severe allergic reaction, an acute gout attack, impaired kidney function, and a twisted colon.

Discharge and readmissions

Following more than four weeks in the hospital, I was discharged to my home. However, three days later I experienced a fever and was readmitted to the hospital for treatment of an infection. Following a week of intravenous antibiotic therapy, I was discharged again. Three days later I again experienced a fever and was readmitted to the hospital. The infections were thought to be originating at the PICC line (peripherally inserted central catheter). A 7-day course of vancomycin via intravenous infusion was initiated and the PICC line was removed. Within four days the infection had cleared but it was considered important to complete the 7-day course of antibiotic therapy. However, there was another option that would avoid staying in the hospital for a longer period to receive vancomycin infusions. Linezolid (Zyvox) has a similar antibacterial spectrum as vancomycin and is effective following oral administration. Switching to linezolid should provide no change in the effectiveness of the antibiotic treatment and would permit earlier discharge from the hospital by as much as three days.

But there was another factor. My insurance coverage for medications requires prior authorization for the use of linezolid because of its cost (approximately $1,000 for the 6 tablets I would need). Prior authorization was requested and approved, but not for more than 24 hours after the request was initiated. Yet one more example of a broken prescription drug insurance system that would deny or delay the use of a drug that would avoid the much greater expense of several additional days of hospitalization.

I received the linezolid, was discharged from the hospital on a timely basis, and have been infection-free at home while experiencing significant improvement in my strength and mobility.

Treatment results

Following the completion of the initial chemotherapy, an appropriate interval of time is permitted to elapse and a bone marrow biopsy is then conducted to assess the effects of the treatment. The biopsy results provided the best news I could have hoped for – no evidence of leukemia cells! Approximately 3 weeks later, another bone marrow biopsy was performed and provided the same encouraging results. I am very thankful to report that I am now in remission! Because leukemia cells often recur, additional chemotherapy treatments (consolidation therapy) are recommended to reduce the risk of recurrence, and I am tentatively scheduled to have two of these treatments.

The support system

Sue was at the hospital for most of every day and our children and their families visited frequently. They were a wonderful source of love and encouragement. Close friends brought Sue to the hospital many mornings and picked her up in the evenings to spare her from dealing with the traffic, parking, etc. as part of the 45-minute trip. Many prayers were offered on my behalf. I also received very kind and gracious messages from many friends, colleagues, and current and former students via cards, emails, and on the Caring Bridge website where my son provides updates regarding my status (www.caringbridge.org/visit/danhussar). These greetings have been a great source of encouragement and I appreciate them very much. I am not in a position to personally acknowledge the numerous communications I received. However, many of those who sent them receive The Pharmacist Activist and I hope that they will accept these comments as evidence of my deep appreciation.

Looking forward

The results of my initial chemotherapy are very encouraging but I am realistic in recognizing that the disease can return and have a very different outcome. Even more importantly, I have experienced an even greater appreciation for the value of my faith, and for the prayers, love, support, and encouragement provided by my family, friends, and many others whom I have had the privilege of coming to know.

This experience has been a "time out" during which I have had much more time to think about my priorities. I feel that God has more for me to do which will include showing greater support and encouragement for others with needs in the manner that they have been provided for me.


"The Lord is my strength and my shield;
my heart trusts in him and I am helped."
Psalms 28:7

Daniel A. Hussar

 

07/14/2015

PCP Student Says 'Pharmacists Play Vital Role in Health Care'

Deanna_BAs a Philadelphia College of Pharmacy student, Deanna Bauerlein PharmD’16 witnessed the value of pharmacists playing a greater role in direct patient care. In fact, she even had the opportunity to administer a vaccine to a patient during a recent clinical rotation at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

"Because Veterans Affairs facilities operate under federal law, their pharmacists have the authority to prescribe patients’ medications and manage their chronic diseases,” said Bauerlein. “I shadowed a pharmacist who specialized in the therapeutic treatment of diabetes, so it was interesting to see him interact with his patients and prescribe medications to treat high blood pressure and cholesterol.”

By expanding the role of pharmacists in the healthcare setting, Bauerlein said she noticed that patients were more likely to understand their medications, ask questions about their health, and adhere to their therapeutic regimen.

The collaborative approach to healthcare delivery is a very familiar concept to Bauerlein. Over the past few years, she has participated in University of the Sciences’ interprofessional education program with Cooper Medical School of Rowan University and Cooper Health System. This program is available to approximately 30 pharmacy students per class and spans the first three professional years of the PharmD program at USciences.

During the program, Bauerlein and her PCP classmates worked alongside Cooper medical students to run several free community health clinics for low-income residents in Camden, as well as shadowed healthcare providers in various settings, such as a women’s health center, an HIV clinic, and a nursing home.

“This was an eye-opening experience because I interacted with Spanish-speaking patients and it really pushed me to try and break the communication barrier,” said Bauerlein. “I provided them with free healthcare, but they helped me gain practical skills that can’t be taught in the classroom.”

Bauerlein said she has taken full advantage of USciences’ resources by building strong faculty relationships, joining professional organizations on campus, mentoring younger pharmacy students, and participating in hands-on educational experiences, such as the Cooper program.

She especially values the advice and guidance she continues to receive from her faculty adviser, Dr. Anisha Grover, assistant professor of clinical pharmacy at USciences.

As for now, Bauerlein is set to begin her next rotation in the behavioral health unit at Clara Maass Medical Center in Belleville, NJ, and is eager to graduate in the spring with her doctor of pharmacy degree.

Bauerlein discusses the most rewarding experiences from
pharmacy school in this 
Pharmacy Times clip:

 

07/01/2015

Recent PCP Grad Says 'Post-Grad Life is Golden'

JoseenWhile many students dread entering the real world after college, recent grad Joseen Chundamala PharmD’15 couldn’t be happier. The young pharmacist had a job lined up with Penn Medicine shortly after graduating in May, recently signed the lease to her very own apartment, and even purchased her first piece of furniture that was not from IKEA or Craigslist.

As far as Chundamala is concerned, post-grad life is golden.

After working towards her doctor of pharmacy degree over the past six years, Chundamala is now employed as a clinical pharmacist at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. Some of her responsibilities include preparing and dispensing medications, as well as designing, recommending, monitoring, and evaluating patient and age-specific pharmacotherapy regimens.


ChundChundamala said she felt confident and prepared entering the workforce because she spent the past three years as a pharmacy intern with Penn Medicine, as well as held various externships with Walgreens, Columbia University Medical Center, BioCentric, Inc., New Castle Rx, and Crownpoint Indian Health Services. She also values the strong pharmacy education and network opportunities she received as a student at USciences.

During her time at USciences, Chundamala was an active member in several on-campus organizations, such as the Alpha Sigma Tau National Sorority, American College of Clinical Pharmacy, American Pharmacists Association, and American Society of Health-System Pharmacists.

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