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CEO Blog: Scott Knoer, MS, PharmD, FASHP

Scott Knoer is the 13th executive vice president and CEO of the American Pharmacists Association. Before joining APhA in 2020, Scott served as Chief Pharmacy Officer for the Cleveland Clinic. He also served in pharmacy leadership roles at the University of Minnesota Medical Center, Fairview, and the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston.

Read more about Scott

Published on Tuesday, October 19, 2021

American Pharmacists Month: You stand by us all

As we reach the midpoint of American Pharmacists Month, we must continuously honor the pharmacists who do heroic work every day in the face of incredible pressures. Pharmacy workforce shortages exist in almost every area of the country. Corporations can seem insufficiently responsive to the stresses of pharmacy practice. Patients may aggressively challenge the professional judgment of pharmacists and other pharmacy personnel. A toxic mixture of vaccine misinformation and disinformation fuels distrust. Keeping up-to-date with the rapidly evolving vaccine guidance from government authorities can be difficult. We recognize these problems and are thankful for your invaluable work.

As you may have seen on social media, we’re proud to partner with Johnson & Johnson this month on the You Stand by Us All campaign. Our aim is to elevate your stories on our social channels—we hope you’re able to share some of your inspiring stories, too. We encourage you to join the campaign on social media using the hashtag #YouStandByUsAll. As part of the APhA and Johnson & Johnson American Pharmacists Month campaign, we’ve co-released a brief video thanking pharmacists for their amazing work. I hope you’ll watch it, if you haven’t already.

Though these kind words may be welcome and perhaps even helpful, they’re not nearly enough. APhA's world revolves around members like you—your career, your well-being, your knowledge, and your future. All our members are heroes and patriots who save the world every day. That’s why we’ll never stop fighting for you. We exist to serve all pharmacists in all practice settings, to help you provide the best care to your patients and make the biggest possible impact on the health of our communities, nation, and world.

I continue to be in awe of how you’ve responded to the COVID-19 pandemic. For a brutal year and a half, pharmacists and pharmacy teams have placed their patients’ safety ahead of their own and embraced both the challenges and opportunities of the crisis. For your unending bravery, selflessness, resilience, and tenacity, APhA thanks you.

Today, pharmacists have practice authorities that go way beyond dispensing. We’re diagnosing, preventing, and treating COVID-19; helping Americans stay up-to-date on all their routine vaccinations; and delivering care in new ways such as telehealth. The federal government has opened its eyes to what pharmacists can contribute to public health efforts and realized that they can count on us. For stepping up to the plate and expanding patients’ access to life-saving services, APhA thanks you.

Our members are immunizers and educators. Over the past year, APhA has focused on empowering pharmacists in their efforts to build vaccine confidence among their patients—the impact of which cannot be overstated. Patients can trust their pharmacists to listen to their concerns without judgment and to share unbiased and accurate information. For initiating and sustaining those conversations, APhA thanks you.

Pharmacists and pharmacy teams have taken on the role of advocate by talking to decision-makers about the urgent need for federal provider status recognition and pharmacy payment reform. For spreading the message about our successes and untapped potential, APhA thanks you.

APhA members have engaged with the organization’s work to promote fairness and health equity by dismantling structural racism. For taking time to reflect on your thoughts and behaviors, identify and confront unconscious biases, and learn about social determinants of health, APhA thanks you.

Please keep using us as a resource for education and practice tips. Visit our website; come to our conferences; use our platforms to connect with your colleagues; strengthen your advocacy skills; hit us up on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or YouTube; listen to our podcast, Locked on Pharmacy; and access our tools to prevent burnout and relieve stress.

You stand by us all, and APhA stands by you. It is our honor to be your champion; and forevermore, we’ve got your back.

Thank you, and have a wonderful American Pharmacists Month!

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