137 posts categorized "Pharmacy Practice"

12/01/2015

Pharmacy Alumnus is Now His Own Boss

ReneAfter 15 years of working in pharmacies, Rene Rodriguez PharmD'08 is now his own boss.

Rodriguez has put his Philadelphia College of Pharmacy education and experience to use by opening the doors of Tens Pharmacy, the only independent pharmacy in the Roseland/Essex Fells, New Jersey area. The store opened to the public on Monday, Aug. 3, but held its official grand opening celebration on Friday, Nov. 20.

Although Rodriguez is a resident of Parsippany, his decision to open a location in Roseland stemmed from hearing positive feedback about the area.

“This location caught my eye because the shopping center was really busy,” he said. “Eagle Rock Avenue is a great street with lots of small businesses. I read a lot about Roseland and it is a great place for that.”

Rodriguez has been working as a pharmacist for the past eight years after earning his doctor of pharmacy degree from University of the Sciences. However, he began his journey working in both independent and chain pharmacies nearly 15 years ago because of his keen interest in medicine and helping people around him live better.

Watching his father’s success with his business growing up inspired Rodriguez to pursue a similar path.

“My father definitely inspired me growing up,” he said. “Watching him putting the time and dedication made [owning a business] something I’ve always gravitated towards.

For Rodriguez, he plans to use his business to zero in on the needs of the patient and ensure their health is top-priority.

“My goal for the public is to care for everybody and make sure everyone’s living better and well-informed about the medication they take,” he said. “I want them to have less problems and have to go to the doctor less.”

He adds that while chain pharmacies have their place in the business, independent pharmacies offer a more personal approach to medication dispensing, as the business can work one-on-one with the patient in a way that big stores cannot.

“I’ve worked in a lot of independent pharmacies, and we’re more focused on working individually with the customers and providing the best customer service,” he said.

Rodriguez said that smaller pharmacies tend to focus more on customer service rather than the number of prescriptions filled or the amount of money being made. “We are more about the patients and seeing family’s grow. It’s more about the patients for the smaller guys,” Rodriguez said. “My goal is to call everybody by their first name when they come in.”

Tens Pharmacy not only focuses on the patient’s comfort by building personal relationships, but by offering medicine delivery as well. Rodriguez explained that the pharmacy will deliver medication straight to households free-of-charge, allowing patients who are sick to receive treatment right to their doorsteps. He also plans to make personal accommodations for patients who may be inconvenienced when picking up their medications.

“If a patient goes on vacation, we can work ways around that because I do not want to see anyone go without meds,” he said.

Continue reading Roseland's newest pharmacy focuses on personalized attention...

11/24/2015

PCP Student Has Developed a Keen Interest in the Business Side of Pharmacy

PrincyJohnPrincy John PharmD’17 touts a laundry list of accomplishments as a pharmacy student and leader at University of the Sciences. Over the past four years, she has completed competitive pharmacy internships, organized the University’s annual Pinkathon fundraiser, and served as a student ambassador.

“USciences is filled with valuable experiences and if you are motivated to put yourself out there and make the most of every opportunity, you will have a lot to gain in return,” said John. “I cherish my faculty and staff mentors who have motivated me and believed in me throughout my college journey.”

John has particularly enjoyed her freedom to explore the different avenues of pharmacy through various courses and professional organizations offered on campus. By doing so, she developed a keen interest in the business side of the pharmaceutical industry and decided to pursue a minor in pharmaceutical and healthcare business.

As a pharmacy intern with Hahnemann University Hospital, John provides assistance in the compounding, preparation and distribution of medications, under the direct supervision of a registered pharmacist. She also performs tasks related to the daily operation of the pharmacy.

Last summer, John gained a unique set of skills as a clinical intern for a New Jersey-based healthcare communications firm, P-Value Communications. She was able to share her pharmacy and healthcare education with her team members so that they were able to understand the subject matter and develop successful marketing materials for their clients. John said she was oftentimes asked to explain diseases and conditions, interpret technical data, and conduct literature searches for her team.

Beyond her feats as a student-pharmacist, John said she is proud of the role she has played in organizing the Pinkathon event to raise money for breast cancer research.

“This event is truly a symbol of collaboration on campus because it continues to unite hundreds of USciences students from different campus organizations for the sole purpose of raising money for the Linda Creed Foundation,” she said.

She also remains active in several of USciences’ student-chapters of professional organizations, including Drug Information Association, American Pharmacists Association-Academy of Student Pharmacists, and American Society of Health-System Pharmacists.

For now, John is focused on completing her doctor of pharmacy degree in 2017 and hopes to someday work for a pharmaceutical company where she can combine her dual interests in pharmacy and business.

11/17/2015

PCP Grads Pursue Residency Programs at the Johns Hopkins Hospital

Ekeoha-ijeomaSoon after Ijeoma Ekeocha PharmD'09 graduated from University of the Sciences in 2009, she followed her dream career as a pharmacist at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore

During her time as a hospital pharmacist, Dr. Ekeocha became particularly interested in emergency medicine, internal medicine, diabetes management, patient education, and academia. After five years in that role, Dr. Ekeocha recently made the decision to expand her knowledge and education in the field and became a pharmacy practice resident at Johns Hopkins Hospital earlier this year. She plans to continue her training with a second year specialty residency.

Dr. Ekeocha said she is thankful to the hospital’s pharmacy department for providing her with a unique opportunity that will help her achieve her goal of becoming a clinical faculty member at a large academic institution.

Tolan-meghanRecent graduate Meghan E. Tolan PharmD’14 is also wrapping up a two-year health-system pharmacy administration residency at Johns Hopkins. This competitive program also gave her a chance to pursue an MBA in healthcare management at the Johns Hopkins Carey Business School.

Dr. Tolan’s professional interests, include quality improvement, regulatory affairs, clinical and operational management, transitions of care, academia, and professional pharmacy organizations. She currently serves as the resident member of the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists Commission on Credentialing.

10/20/2015

PCP Student Explored Regulatory Side of Pharma Through Eli Lilly and Company Internship

Naiya_patelWith more than a year to go until she completes her doctor of pharmacy degree, Naiya Patel PharmD’17 has already got a dose of various aspects of the pharmaceutical industry. She has completed internships in regulatory affairs, research and development, and retail pharmacy to help identify her career niche, and most recently worked as a regulatory intelligence intern with Eli Lilly and Company in Indianapolis.

“The enduring legacy of the Lilly name at University of the Sciences is one of great pride, so it was a real honor and privilege for me to use my pharmacy education and training during my summer internship with Eli Lilly and Company,” said Patel.

USciences has launched the careers of many innovative and pioneering individuals in the field of healthcare, including the founders of six of the world’s leading pharmaceutical companies. Among those companies is Eli Lilly and Company, which was established by Dr. Eli Lilly (Class of 1907) and his father, Josiah K. Lilly (Class of 1882).

The Lilly legacy at USciences continues today, as the special relationship between the two institutions is acknowledged through scholarship and internship programs. The Eli Lilly and Company Internship Program offers USciences students, like Patel, a unique opportunity to spend a summer in Indianapolis gaining firsthand work experience in their field.

As a regulatory intelligence intern, Patel was charged with gathering and analyzing regulatory information for impact or changes pertaining to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s laws, procedures, and guidelines. She also reviewed industry-related literature and news about the pharmaceutical industry as well as documented and organized technical file information.

"One of the aspects of this internship that was of great value was the ability to have one-on-one meetings with employees from different departments within the company," said Patel. "I truly learned of the various opportunities that this industry has to offer for pharmacists as well as expanded my professional network." 

Of special interest and importance to Patel is that she was able to present her research to the regulatory intelligence department at Eli Lilly and Company, including Robert Metcalf, vice president of global regulatory affairs.

Patel also previously held a summer internship with Emcure Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc., in Brunswick, New Jersey, where she was exposed to the research and development side of the industry. Over the past year, she has also gained retail pharmacy and patient engagement experience at Aspire Pharmacy, an independent community pharmacy in West Philadelphia.

Aside from her practical work experience, Patel also serves as president of the Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy student chapter at USciences. This professional organization is open to all pharmacy students with an interest in managed health care. Its mission is to promote and develop the application of pharmaceutical care in order to ensure appropriate health outcomes for all individuals.

Daraprim – The Ultimate Drug Pricing Outrage?

Drug priceBy Dr. Daniel A. Hussar, 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 from which this editorial was taken.

Pyrimethamine (Daraprim) was initially approved in the United States in 1953 for the treatment of patients with malaria. It was subsequently determined to be of value in the treatment of toxoplasmosis, a relatively uncommon but sometimes fatal parasitic infection for which patients with compromised immune systems (e.g., patients with AIDS) are at greatest risk. Pyrimethamine is a component of the regimen that has been considered to be the most effective treatment for toxoplasmosis.

Pyrimethamine was originally developed and marketed by the Burroughs Wellcome Company (subsequently acquired by the company now known as GlaxoSmithKline). Following expiration of its patent, the product and its trade name Daraprim have been acquired and marketed by several other companies. Generic formulations of the drug have either been unavailable or available on only a limited basis because the drug is used so infrequently that generic companies have not considered it commercially feasible to market. As recently as 5 years ago, the cost of Daraprim was about $1 a tablet. The US marketing rights to the drug in the United States were sold by GlaxoSmithKline in 2010, and the rights to the drug have been sold several additional times during the last five years. In the period preceding August, 2015 Daraprim was marketed by Impax Laboratories at a cost of $13.50 a tablet.

Turing Pharmaceuticals

In August, 2015 Impax sold Daraprim to Turing Pharmaceuticals. Shortly prior to that time Impax discontinued distributing the drug through the traditional pharmacy system and restricted its availability to a controlled distribution system, resulting in only very limited supplies of the drug remaining available in general distribution.

The CEO of Turing is a former hedge fund manager and a former CEO of a small pharmaceutical company (Retrophin), another company that acquired an older infrequently prescribed drug (tiopronin [Thiola] for the prevention of cystine kidney stones) that was not available from other sources, and then markedly increased its price.

Following its purchase of Daraprim in what has been described in commentaries as an "overnight" price increase, Turing raised the price of Daraprim from $13.50 a tablet to $750 a tablet. The company and its CEO initially attempted to justify the price increase by describing it as a great business decision that would be of benefit for all of its stakeholders. The previous price was identified as unprofitable and the drug was portrayed as being so infrequently prescribed that the impact of the price increase would be minuscule. The Turing CEO was quoted as saying, "This isn't the greedy drug company trying to gouge patients, it is us trying to stay in business" (New York Times, September 20).

Outrage!

Daraprim is not the first drug for which the availability of an older drug has been limited/restricted/controlled with a resultant sharp increase in its price. Examples include tiopronin, doxycycline, cycloserine, isoproterenol, repository corticotropin injection (H.P. Acthar Gel), and hydroxyprogesterone caproate (Makena). However, the outrage regarding the Daraprim price increase from patients, health professionals, legislators, Presidential candidates, and the public has been immediate and intense. This response is certainly due, in large part, to the huge amount of the price increase, profit being the single motivation for the increase, and the arrogance of the company and its CEO in attempting to justify the increase. This situation has also occurred during a time period in which numerous concerns have been voiced about the prices of many drugs, including important drugs for chronic hepatitis C infection, cholesterol-regulating drugs with a unique mechanism of action, and many anticancer drugs.

The Daraprim experience has become a "lightning rod" that has galvanized attention to all examples and reasons for which many have concerns about drug prices. It has to be the worst nightmare for the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) and the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) that represent the interests of the pharmaceutical companies, and are very concerned that their member companies' motives and actions might be considered to be similar to those demonstrated by Turing. BIO issued the following statement in response to the Daraprim situation:


"Turing Pharmaceuticals was a member of BIO for a brief period of time and is currently no longer a member. The company and its leadership do not reflect the commitment to innovation and values that are at the core of BIO's reputation and mission. For that reason, BIO determined, after a review of Turing's membership status, that the company did not meet our eligibility criteria, and we took action to rescind its membership and return its membership dues."

I commend BIO for taking this action. However, an evaluation of "the commitment to innovation and values" of certain other companies is also warranted. Although the price increase and statements from Turing may be the most blatant and arrogant to date, some other companies are also engaged in similar practices that are motivated only by the anticipation of large profits.

The storm of criticism and anger regarding the price increase for Daraprim resulted in an announcement from Turing several days later that it would lower the price although, at the time this is being written, the reduced price had not yet been identified. Turing also attempted to convey a message that the higher price was needed to fund research regarding toxoplasmosis and the development of educational programs and new drugs from which patients would benefit. It also indicated that the medication would be provided to patients with financial need. However, its singular motivation for high profits had already been exposed, and its belated attempt to claim it was interested in patients only further eroded its credibility.

A better outcome

The antitubercular drug cycloserine was developed in the 1950s but is seldom used in current therapy. However, it is of value in the treatment of patients with potentially life-threatening multi-drug resistant tuberculosis that is resistant to conventional antitubercular regimens. Cycloserine capsules have been supplied by The Chao Center, a nonprofit organization that is part of the Purdue Research Foundation, at a cost of $480 for 30 capsules. It recently sold the product to Rodelis Therapeutics. When it was learned that Rodelis planned to increase the price of cycloserine to $10,800 for 30 capsules, Chao requested that the rights to the drug be returned. The two companies agreed that the sale of the drug would be canceled and the rights to the drug were returned to Chao. Although Chao considers it necessary to raise the price to approximately $1,050 for 30 capsules, this is only about one-tenth of the price Rodelis had planned to charge.

Other options

The Daraprim experience represents an abuse of the drug distribution system and undermining of its already fragile financial viability. These situations must not be tolerated. One strategy is to have the company that initially obtained approval for the drug or a generic pharmaceutical company supply the drug at a low profit margin. The situation described above in which cycloserine is supplied by a nonprofit organization is a variation of this approach.

Another option is to have compounding pharmacists obtain the medication and prepare the appropriate dosage forms. Although there are restrictions with respect to pharmacists compounding formulations that are commercially available, this situation needs to be reconsidered and exceptions to the restrictions explored.

Another option is to obtain certain medications from a Canadian pharmacy. I have not been an advocate for US residents obtaining medications from Canada and other countries. However, it is my understanding that pyrimethamine tablets cost between $6 and $7 each from a Canadian pharmacy, compared to $750 that Turing was planning to charge in the US. This difference can't be justified and current restrictions must be reconsidered.

The concerns about the prices for new drugs and other drugs that still have patent protection are complex and beyond the scope of this commentary. However, for older drugs for which the patents have expired, the options identified above should be actively pursued to prevent greedy profiteers from exploiting the drug distribution system by restricting availability and charging astronomical prices. Pharmacists, other health professionals, and patient groups must work with legislators and the Food and Drug Administration to remove restrictions that currently limit the extent to which affordable medications can be provided for patients.

10/06/2015

PharmTox Alum Valued 'Large Breadth of Resources' Available at USciences

082Recognizing the valuable role her pharmacology and toxicology education has played in her career, Erina Jacinto Ph/Tox’09 returned to University of the Sciences to offer words of advice to current undergraduate students during the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences’ second annual Student Recognition Ceremony on Oct. 2. Her most important take-home message to the students was to become more familiar with the large breadth of resources USciences has to offer, and take advantage of them.

During her time at USciences and shortly thereafter, Jacinto was involved in an elaborate research project with her faculty mentor Peter Harvison, PhD, measuring the effects of hepatotoxic agents on HepG2 cells. Her involvement in this research project resulted in her co-authorship of two papers in prominent toxicology journals.

After completing her research, she accepted a position with Merck through Lancaster Laboratories—where she worked in the lab as a biologist before being promoted to a group supervisor. Within two years of graduating from USciences, Jacinto was responsible for overseeing a team of analysts who performed good manufacturing practice evaluations on the varicella virus.

Throughout her four year career with Lancaster Labs, Jacinto played a pivotal role in standardizing the testing schedule and lab space using Six Sigma principles to increase efficiency—which resulted in a 50 percent reduction in assay lead-time and doubling of sample throughput.

Jacinto now works as a remote site monitor for Pharmaceutical Product Development, LLC—a contract research organization in Blue Bell, Pennsylvania. In this role, she oversees clinical trials which are executed according to federal regulations, as well as reviews study data from various sources, collects study documentation, resolves issues, and requests outstanding information. Jacinto also went on to complete her MS in pharmaceutics from Temple University in 2014.

Philadelphia College of Pharmacy held its second annual Student Recognition Ceremony for undergraduate students in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences on Friday, Oct. 2, 2015. This ceremony recognized the importance of the bachelor of science programs in helping the college fulfill its mission.

10/05/2015

Lifestyle Factors Could Put College-Age Women at Higher Risk of Breast Cancer, Says USciences Prof

IMercier_250x350Breast cancer prevention needs to become a shared conversation among women of all ages because it can strike at any age and is generally more aggressive when diagnosed in women under the age of 50, said Isabelle Mercier, PhD, a pharmaceutical sciences professor at University of the Sciences. With hopes to spark that discussion, Dr. Mercier compiled some key prevention awareness tips for young women.

“Unfortunately, college-age women generally do not consider themselves at risk for breast cancer,” said Dr. Mercier. “However, there are several risk factors that contribute to the development of breast cancer that need to be understood early in life to prevent the development of breast cancer down the road.”

By the end of 2015, more than 231,000 new cases of invasive breast cancer are expected to be diagnosed in the U.S. Of those cases, approximately 40,000 individuals will not survive, said Dr. Mercier. Women in their early 20s need to become aware of some key risk factors associated with breast cancer:

  • Check your family tree. A family history of breast cancer, particularly in a mother or sister, can increase the chance for developing breast cancer. Genetic testing is recommended for young women with prevalence of breast cancer in their families.
  • Watch your weight. Obesity is responsible for up to 20 percent of cancer-associated deaths in women. Being overweight or obese increases the risk of breast cancer by creating a cancer-friendly environment through fat cells.
  • Exercise regularly. Women who strive for at least 2.5 hours per week of moderate-intensity activity – like brisk walking – reduce their risk of breast cancer by 18 percent.
  • Limit alcohol consumption. According to research from Washington University School of Medicine, if a female averages a drink per day, her risk of breast cancer increases by 11 percent. Studies show that alcohol possesses estrogenic activity, thus promoting the growth of breast tumor cells.
  • Annual doc visits. Although mammograms are not recommended for women under the age of 40, young women should still see their primary care doctors each year for clinical breast exams. They are also encouraged to conduct self-examinations throughout the year.
  • Limit tobacco use. Women who smoke have an increased risk of developing breast cancer, especially if they become smokers early in life. Smokers have increased levels of both estrogen and testosterone that might disrupt the endocrine signaling in women and contribute to the development of these tumors.

An important part of Dr. Mercier's research focuses on cancer prevention. The role of vitamin C intake on breast cancer development, progression, recurrence and response to anti-cancer therapy remains unclear. That’s why Dr. Mercier and her research team at USciences are currently studying the role of dietary supplements on cancer risk, as well as evaluating new biomarkers for early detection of breast cancer. 

Media exposure:

KywOct. 8, 2015
Healthy College Lifestyles Can Help Women Prevent Breast Cancer
Audio1

Breast cancer is rare among college-age women, but lifestyle choices made during those years can be life-saving years later.

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.

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