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Actions for today, hope for the future
Michelle Powell 398

Actions for today, hope for the future

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Today's Perspective

Kristin Wiisanen, PharmD, FAPhA, FCCP

The pharmacy profession is in the midst of a crisis. I frequently speak with student pharmacists and new graduates who are understandably concerned. Although each individual’s situation is unique, there are a few things I share with these pharmacists in response.

First, be patient. APhA and other pharmacy associations are very aware of this plight and are advocating daily on your behalf with your employers and in Washington for regulatory and legislative change. It will not happen overnight, but I do believe change is coming and pharmacists’ working conditions will improve. They must improve.

Second, use your voice. Join APhA and stay current with initiatives such as workplace well-being and advocacy for key issues like provider status through the Pharmacy and Medically Underserved Areas Enhancement Act.

Third, as much as you are able to, diversify your practice, innovate, and collaborate with others to take control of your workplace well-being.

This month’s Pharmacy Today cover story provides examples of pharmacists who have innovated to create new practice models in community, consultant, specialty, health system, and other practices. For example, Jena Quinn, PharmD, owner of Perfecting Peds and her team of pediatric pharmacists serve children in long-term care, medical daycare, or home health to prevent pediatric polypharmacy. To demonstrate the value of the pediatric pharmacist, Quinn collected data on 1,355 pharmacist interventions and showed a decrease in hospital and emergency department admissions, fewer medications used, and a cost savings of nearly $500,000 annually.

In this issue of PT, you’ll also find the latest on treating coughs and colds in children and whether or not ashwaganda can be a stress reliever. You’ll learn the latest on pitfalls of online pharmacies, concerns about COVID-19 vaccine access, and collaborative practice agreements in the United States. Catch up on your CPE with this month’s article on communicating with patients about OTC medications.

Are any of the actions I shared above going to change working conditions overnight? No, not even close. But until change comes—and it will come—know that your cries are being heard. APhA and others are working tirelessly for legislative, regulatory, and workplace changes. I encourage you to join APhA to strengthen these efforts, learn more about the progress we are making, and amplify your own voice. ■

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