One of the great joys I have as dean is to receive notes from patients, preceptors and many others telling me about the difference one of our students has made. Here is one such letter about P4 student Sara Miernicki:
“I know we all get very busy with our daily responsibilities and there seems to never be enough time, or at least that is how I feel most of the time. But I wanted to take a moment to let you know that I encountered one of your School of Pharmacy students recently at the CVS in Coventry and was quite pleased how she handled me as a customer. Her name is Sara Miernicki and about a month and a half ago I dropped off a few prescriptions. One of them when I picked them up was over $50. I asked Sara why it was not covered and if I could get a generic brand. She was very helpful in explaining that the way my physician had written the prescription it was for a different one than I had received in the past and there was no generic available. She said she would contact the doctor’s office for me and see if she could fill it how I usually have it filled.
About a month later I went back to pick up the prescription that had been filled with Sara’s help and assistance but it had been too long and the medication had been put back into circulation. Coincidentally, Sara was there to assist me again. I had to drop another prescription off and let her know that I could pick them both up another time. It was pouring rain and I had three young children in the car (at the drive up window). My daughter had just broken her arm and I needed to get her Motrin to help with the pain. I let Sara know that I knew it was not her responsibility to do this but asked if I could purchase the Motrin from the window instead of taking all three kids in the store in the pouring rain. She not only let me do this, she brought the three different flavors over to let my daughter choose the flavor she liked best. It was truly a wonderful demonstration of customer service!
Sara made a definite impression on me and my kids (my daughter wants to know more about the School of Pharmacy!!). It was such a nice experience to know that the pharmacists you train are good citizens and community members – in addition to good pharmacists. Sara made a big difference to me on more than one occasion and I thought I should let you know.
From the time our professional and graduate students first matriculate, we remind them that their job is to care for patients; some will be doing so directly (as did Sara) others will be doing so indirectly though their research, but it’s what we expect of all UConn School of Pharmacy graduates.”
New Head, Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences
I am very pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Debra Kendall, Board of Trustees Distinguished Professor, as Head of the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences effective July 1st. Dr. Kendall replaces Dr. John Morris who has decided to return to the faculty after 8 years of distinguished—and highly successful—service. Dr. Kendall is an internationally-recognized scholar whose work focuses on cannabinoid receptors. Her research has received funding from numerous prestigious granting agencies including the NIH, which has continually supported her work for over two decades. An accomplished teacher as well as scholar, we look forward to her leadership of one of the nation’s most distinguished pharmaceutical sciences departments.
Palmer Endowed Professor in Community Pharmacy Practice/Assistant Dean for Practice & Health Policy Partnerships
Dr. Marie Smith, Head of the Department of Pharmacy Practice, has been named the inaugural Henry A. Palmer Endowed Professor in Community Pharmacy Practice. Dr. Smith’s recent scholarship, especially her Medicaid Transformation Grant from CMS and her paper focused on the pharmacist’s role in the medical home, as well as her work in e-prescribing, has and will have a direct impact on pharmacy practice, especially in the community. In addition, Dr. Smith, through her scholarship and service, is playing an ever-greater role in practice-based research and public policy discussions. In order to formalize these activities, Dr. Smith will also be appointed Assistant Dean for Practice & Public Policy Partnerships. Dr. Smith will remain as Head of the Department of Pharmacy Practice.
Graduate Student Celebration
This May, we held our first annual Graduate Student Celebration focused on recognizing the research accomplishments of our graduate students. Developed by Assistant Department Head Dr. Amy Anderson, the program included presentations from one graduate student in each of our pharmaceutical sciences disciplines: medicinal chemistry, pharmaceutics, and pharmacology/toxicology.
Pharmaceutics Seminar, Archana Rawat
“Standardization of USP Apparatus 4 Method for Performance Testing of Microspheres”
Medicinal Chemistry Seminar, Lalit Deshmukh
“αIIβB3: Tale of Two Cytoplasmic Tails”
Pharmacology/Toxicology Seminar, Igor Gurevich
“Feedback Loop between Retinoic Acid Receptors and Novel Coregulator TNIP1”
CPNP New Investigator Award
Dr. Megan Ehret’s poster presentation was awarded the New Investigator Award from the College of Psychiatric & Neurologic Pharmacists for her work in correctional mental health.
Professional Student Portfolios
The P4 students who began their advanced pharmacy practice experiences (APPE) in June will now be sharing their electronic student portfolios with their preceptors prior to the start of each rotation. The Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) has implemented new standards for all U.S. Schools/Colleges of Pharmacy and now requires pharmacy students to maintain a portfolio. The RxPortfolio, which we are using as our portfolio platform, is a wonderful electronic tool for our UConn pharmacy students to archive, organize, and share their professional activities and develop a resume/CV. The portfolio will allow preceptors to have a better understanding of the student’s experiences and abilities prior to the start of the rotation. Preceptors can utilize this information in the design of some of the activities during the course of the rotation.
American Geriatrics Society Posters
Dr. Sean Jeffery and several of his students and fellows made a significant impact at this spring’s American Geriatric Society Meeting presenting a number of posters.
AGS abstract #: 773837 ; Lee D, Jeffery SM, Gill T et al.
Title: Medication Complexity in a Population of Community-Living Older Persons: The Health, Aging and Body Composition Study
Final Poster ID#: C46 Presented 5/14/10, Orlando FL
AGS Abstract #: 778208; Li L, Jeffery SM, Perkal M, Walke L
Title: A Multidisciplinary Model of Care for Medication Management in Older Surgical Patients
POSTER#: C124 Presented 5/14/10, Orlando FL
AGS Abstract #: 783648. Rozolosky D, Li L, Jeffery S, Walke L.
Title: Progressive tremor, truncal ataxia, and acute mental status changes after use of buproprion in an 84 year-old man with renal impairment
POSTER#: D10 Presented 5/14/10, Orlando FL
American Geriatric Society Presidential Poster Session: AGS abstract #: 771724 Jeffery S, Hanlon H, Aspinall S et al.
Title: The Quality of Warfarin Prescribing and Monitoring in Veterans Affairs Nursing Homes
Presented 5/13/10, Orlando FL
Enjoy your summer!
Robert L. McCarthy, Ph.D.
Dean and Professor