Profiles in Pharmacy — a conversation with Brad Schmidt, PharmD — 10/01/2018

Profiles in Pharmacy — a conversation with Brad Schmidt, PharmD — 10/01/2018

October is American Pharmacist Month. Every October comes and goes, and typically I’ve never celebrated this fact when it comes to Pharmacy. I always liked Halloween parties, but never discussed Pharmacy much outside of the Pharmacy.  Only in the past few years have I thought about purchasing food for my staff and/or honoring a fellow Pharmacist with kind words and acknowledgement about our shared calling and responsibilities to the communities that we serve through the practice of pharmacy. I remember discussing Pharmacist Month in school vaguely, but it never really was on my radar.

A few weeks ago, I thought — wouldn’t it be cool if I could interview some pharmacists that I respect and do a brief profile of their careers to celebrate their accomplishments and acknowledge openly my appreciation to what they’ve given to the profession. Simply stated..how can we as a profession move our profession forward if we never discuss our admiration for each other, and/or discuss openly how to create a more open dialogue about how to create a fair market for both consumers and the practicing pharmacist.

Over the next month, I hope to profile up to 8 Pharmacists. Each profile will consist of an interview and picture of the Pharmacist in their practice setting. I hope you as the reader gain an appreciation for the art and science of pharmacy and the people who encompass our profession.

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Our first Profile in Pharmacy is of Brad Schmidt, PharmD

Brad graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2001 with his Doctor of Pharmacy. He earned his Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry from Gustavus Adolphus College in 1995. He is the Staff Pharmacist for Peds Rx Pharmacy Solutions and has been my work partner at the Pharmacy since we opened in September 2013. 

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Sam:  How did you come about pharmacy? 

Brad: I grew up in a small town — thought about becoming a physician — then got more interested in chemistry when I went off to college — I ended up talking to my local pharmacist in town and got more into the profession from there.

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Sam: Can you please describe your career path and what you’ve done during your career and please don’t be modest.  
Brad: I got out of pharmacy school — I floated in a retail chain for a while — but, I really didn’t find that rewarding or something I enjoyed (CVS Pharmacy 1 year). So, once an opportunity to work at a pediatric outpatient pharmacy came about I took it (Children’s of Alabama 7 years). Some years went by when I wanted to try something different, so I found a job as a Clinical Pharmacist at UAB (1 year). Then I left that position and took a job doing mail order (CVS 2 years). Mail order was a nice hourly job that was family conducive, but then the facility closed down. Then I moved onto working in Home Infusion (Walgreen Home Infusion 2 years). Then in 2013 we met, and I’ve been at Peds Rx for the past 5 years (Pediatric Outpatient Pharmacy for Children’s of Alabama).  So all in all, I have 12 years of pediatric outpatient pharmacy experience. I do like different things, I like changes, and I never wanted to do the same thing for 30 years — so I’ve always believed that you never know your true passion until you try something. Thus, I’ve tried different things over the years. 
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Sam: What does your family think you do at work
Brad: Well my wife, she’s a pharmacist, so she understands what I do.  In regards to the dispensing role, she understands that we are a resource for information for the hospital, and help patients get their medications situated for discharge from the hospital, do prior authorizations and overrides, and overall increase access for patients to receive appropriate pharmaceutical care… so that’s my wife…
But Everyone else in my family thinks I just count drugs and make kids feel better. 
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Sam: How do you see the future of pharmacy practice in the next 20 years
Brad: I see pharmacists as being dispensers being phased out — and more medication therapy management reviews like whats being done with Medicare Part D.. I see the role of technology increasing — remote dispensing will continue to push forward — more centralization of pharmacy with Amazon and Big Chains. Less corner store drug stores — less chain stores and more automation with central pharmacies. Independents will continue to fill the void with a niche market. 
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Sam: Is being a Pharmacist what you thought it would be
Brad: I would probably say umm… I would say starting off yes, but after practicing for 18 years — things have changed — there’s less focus on the patients and things have become more number driven. The scope of practice ( clinical positions) isn’t what I expected. Which is good. Residencies were just starting when I was graduating but now most of the graduates look into residencies now. The thing that surprised me is that it’s become less patient focused with the financial pressures due to the market constraints that has created a barrier for entry to the little guy. Which we as pharmacists have to fight for. In school we talk about pharmaceutical care and patient wellness — and in the real world it’s more like fill 500 scripts and just get the work done.. 
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Sam: What do you think of October being American Pharmacists Month?
Brad: Unfortunately I think that most times — maybe only a 1/4 to 1/3 of the places I’ve worked at even celebrated Pharmacists month — most of management, patients, and even the parents didn’t know about Pharmacists Month.  And even within the profession there’s not a lot of recognition. Only 25 to 30 percent of the time have I received a thank you or been given recognition for Pharmacists Month. 
Overall I’m glad it’s there, but in reality it’s not as recognized as some of the other professions. We’re not a very organized profession — we’re divided in some ways and because of this there’s division in how we celebrate the month. The nursing association and medical associations bring about the importance of their professions — but when was the last time our association did something to recognize the profession through something like a commercial. The month comes and goes and we go to work and go home. But hopefully as the years go forward we will become more organized and united for the month of October. 
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Sam: What would you tell a new grad?
Brad: Since they already graduate then it’s too late 😉 laughter… 
There’s a lot of opportunities out there — the PharmD degree has many opportunities and there’s a lot of diversity within the profession — thus there’s alot of things to be involved in and ways with which you can be challenged. I tell new grads to always take your time in the final check and always go with your gut instincts and don’t get distracted during that final verification step. Pharmacy is a small world so don’t ever burn bridges.  Even if you don’t like someone part peacefully. Don’t burn bridges — pharmacy is a small world. 
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Sam: How must pharmacy school change to keep up with the changes taking place in the workplace and the business market? 
Brad: They are definitely focusing on residency and clinical opportunities — unfortunately they have gotten away from the traditional roles which has caused a bit of a learning deficit. They’re beginning to lack some of the basic skills of pharmacy practice, like understanding dosage forms, etc.. Which causes the newly practicing pharmacist to not immediately understand how to dispense or compound. 
In terms of the business side — the schools hurt the profession a bit. From 2001-2005 they added pharmacy schools and in 2009 during the recession the job market became tighter. Thus, from a business standpoint the market has become slightly over saturated with pharmacists. 
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Sam: Is there anything you would like to add?  
Brad: Only thing I would like to add, is that I’m proud to be a Pharmacist, I’m proud to have made relationships with Patients and staff — but as far as moving forward we need to be more united as a profession and have organization and be united. The times have changed — and we must be united. If we don’t carve out our niche in the new world we could be wiped out as a profession. We need to come together so that we’re not eaten up.. 
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Sam Blakemore IMG_1742 is the Pharmacy Manager of Peds Rx Pharmacy Solutions. Connect with him via: LinkedIn Support the effort and PURCHASE MERCH.

Session 2 — August 1, 2018 — Last Class Session

Session 2 — August 1, 2018 — Last Class Session

Congratulations on being complete!

Session 2 was successful. Six students completed this non-credit course and did well. They are now prepared to become registered pharmacy technicians and begin the process of becoming functional/capable assistants to practicing Pharmacists in a community pharmacy setting.

The final session consisted of talking, encouragement, and a review of the Session 2 — Final Exam.

Review the Audio of this Session: 

The final day of class we took pictures:

If you enjoyed this session please continue to follow my blog and share your reviews of the lecture materials. Review Session 2 Materials if you would like to have a RECAP. T-Shirts commemorating this session are available for purchase on Amazon.com. BUY MERCH — T-SHIRTS SOLD on AMAZON

Lastly, the highlight of the session is when the students took over and became the teachers of the material — that really shows their passion and grasp of the material covered. Check it out yourself!

 

Thanks again for the memories and congratulations to those that completed the session!

August 1st 2018 😉

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Sam Blakemore IMG_1742 is the Pharmacy Manager of Peds Rx Pharmacy Solutions. Connect with him via: LinkedIn Support the effort and PURCHASE MERCH.

Session 2—July 26, 2018—Final Exam Review

Session 2—July 26, 2018—Final Exam Review

You will have a seventy question final exam Tuesday July 31, 2018.

Please review Session 1’s Final Exam to get an idea of what to expect — Final Exam — PDF of Exam Administered May 22, 2018 & Lecture May 23, 2018

If you were not in class please review the audio from July 26, 2018 — 

The bulk of the final exam will consist of the following topics: 

  1. Top 200
  2. Pharmacy Law
  3. Days Supply Calculations
  4. Compounding Calculations
  5. Pharmacy Workflow
  6. Insurance Billing

Questions or concerns feel free to email me. Thanks!

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Sam Blakemore is the Pharmacy Manager of Peds Rx Pharmacy Solutions. Connect with him via: LinkedIn

Session 2 — July 18, 2018 — Lecture 7

Session 2 — July 18, 2018 — Lecture 7

LECTURE: 

Labetalol 10mg/ml recipe used, recipe can be found using the following link: http://www.mipedscompounds.org/sites/default/files/standard-formulations/Labetalol.pdf

  • Prescriber: Dr. House
  • Dose: 50mg BID
  • Days Supply: QS to 30 Days
  • Pharmacy Dispensing: Sam’s Discount Pharmacy
  • RX# 0023 Date Rx Written: 7/12/2018 Date Rx Compounded: 7/18/2018
  • Fictional Patient Name: Fred Johnson
  • Compounding Standards used was USP 795: http://www.usp.org/compounding/general-chapter-795
  • Pharmacist: S. Blakemore

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Questions: 

  1. How many ml’s must be dispensed for 30 day supply? 300ml
  2. What is the patient’s dose in milliliters? 5ml bid
  3. Would it be appropriate to dispense a 30 day supply? No, the stability is only 28 days, but to keep compounding simple, we will use a round number and dispense 300ml.
  4. How many tablets will we need to compound this prescription? 10mg/ml x 5ml = 50mg/dose x 2 doses/day =100mg/day x 30 days = 3000mg. To compound we will use 300mg tablets. 3000mg/300mg/tablet = 10 tablets will be used to compound.

 

Homework: Review Compounding Log, Review Compounding Recipe, Create a Prescription Label based on Alabama Law

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Sam Blakemore is the Pharmacy Manager of Peds Rx Pharmacy Solutions. Connect with him via: LinkedIn

 

 

Session 2 — July 17, 2018 — Lecture 6

Session 2 — July 17, 2018 — Lecture 6

This lecture will be conducted by Janiece, a Certified Pharmacy Technician. There will be no audio recorded for this lecture. The lecture and lab will consist of the following:

  1. Brief Lecture covering Drug Information: Lecture 8 — April 25, 2018
  2. Lab: Errors and Omissions — Prescriptions Labeling based on Alabama Law: Alabama Law Regarding Prescription Labeling

In addition please review Lecture 5 and the following content to be prepared for your Quiz. 

  1. Please Review: Errors and Omissions — July 12, 2018
  2. Please Review: Lecture 6–April 19, 2018
  3. Please Review Answers: Answers to Lecture 6 & 7 Handout

Quiz: To be Posted Upon Completion

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Sam Blakemore is the Pharmacy Manager of Peds Rx Pharmacy Solutions. Connect with him via: LinkedIn

Session 2 — Quiz 3 — July 5, 2018

Session 2 — Quiz 3 — July 5, 2018

Audio for Session 2 — Lecture 4 — July 5, 2018 will be published next Wednesday July 11, 2018 

Please review Quiz 3

After reviewing this Quiz, please review Session 2 — Quiz 1 & Quiz 2 PDF Documents

Please review the links from the previous post Preparation for Quiz 3 and lecture on July 5th 2018

Keep Studying! This session is almost complete!

For questions please feel free to contact me. Have a great weekend!

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Sam Blakemore is the Pharmacy Manager of Peds Rx Pharmacy Solutions. Connect with him via: LinkedIn