Dr. Marie Smith Receives 2011 Award for Innovation in Pharmacy Practice from ASHP Research and Education Foundation

Marie A. Smith, Pharm.D., has been named the recipient of the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) Research and Education Foundation’s 2011 Award for Innovation in Pharmacy Practice. The award is one of five that are awarded annually as part of the ASHP Foundation’s Literature Awards Program.  The Literature Awards Program recognizes original, significant contributions to biomedical literature by pharmacists. All Literature Award recipients exemplify excellence in research and writing that foster improvements in the medication-use process, pioneer new uses of technology and pharmacy personnel and promote the pharmacist’s role in patient care. The awardees will be formally recognized during the 2011 ASHP Midyear Clinical Meeting in December in New Orleans, La.

Dr. Smith is the Dr. Henry A. Palmer Endowed Professor in Community Pharmacy Practice and the assistant dean of practice and public policy partnerships at the University of Connecticut School of Pharmacy. Her winning article, “Why Pharmacists Belong in the Medical Home,” was co-authored by David W. Bates, M.D., M.Sc., Thomas Bodenheimer, M.D., and Paul Cleary, Ph.D. It appeared in Health Affairs (Health Aff (Millwood). 2010 May;29(5):906-13.).  “It is truly an honor to be recognized by peers for our scholarly work,” says Dr. Smith. “However, it was even more inspiring to hear from so many pharmacy colleagues across the country who have used the article in a timely manner to justify or expand pharmacy services in medical home/primary care settings.”

Dr. Smith and her team wrote the first, extensive, original article about the pharmacist’s role in the medical home. The detailed description of pharmacists’ roles in this setting allows stakeholders to actually envision the services that should be integrated for medication therapy management in primary care. It describes the drug therapy problems patients encounter with less well-managed care, citing evidence from the literature. The authors also provided examples of existing evidence-based care delivery models to demonstrate how these practices have produced important clinical and economic results from integrated pharmacists’ medication therapy management services into care delivery.

The article stimulated the pharmacy profession to engage in more widespread health reform conversations and encouraged more pharmacists to think about the policy implications of their practice and research endeavors. It has also spurred pharmacy leaders to approach health care executives and physician colleagues to challenge the current paradigms and to justify pharmacists as active participants in patient-centered medical home planning and implementation initiatives with a focus on addressing practice gaps—especially with the safe and effective use of medications in primary care settings.  “Medication management is too critical and important to leave to any one person or profession,” says Dr. Smith. “It requires a team-based, interdisciplinary approach that is one of the principles of the Primary Care Medical Home. Pharmacists have the training and clinical expertise to detect, resolve, monitor and prevent medication-related problems across the continuum of care to assure safe, evidence-based, cost-effective medication use.”

The ASHP Foundation will recognize Dr. Smith, along with the other 2011 Literature Award recipients, on December 7, 2011, at an awards breakfast in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Related Resources

The Literature Awards Program, which was established in 1970, has recognized more than 400 practitioners for their significant contributions to the literature of pharmacy practice. For more information regarding this award, please visit our Web site at www.ashpfoundation.org/litawards.

About the ASHP Foundation

The ASHP Research and Education Foundation (www.ashpfoundation.org) was established in 1968 by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) (www.ashp.org) as a nonprofit, tax-exempt organization. As the philanthropic arm of ASHP, our vision is that patient outcomes improve because of the leadership and clinical skills of pharmacists, as vital members of the health care team, accountable for safe and effective medication use. Our mission is to improve the health and well-being of patients in health systems through appropriate, safe and effective medication use.